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Young Circle is the easternmost of three major traffic circles envisioned by the City of Hollywood’s (Florida) founder, Joseph W. Young. Eventually, it would serve as an anchor for Downtown Hollywood and become a source of frustration for many driving along Hollywood Boulevard and US1. As Florida underwent significant growth in the 1960s, Young Circle began its ‘mid-century’ transformation, where cornerstone structures from the city’s founding in the 1920s gave way to modern shopping plazas and several highrise buildings. The demolition of the Hollywood Bread Building in the Fall of 2021 reflects another metamorphosis for Young Circle and the loss of one of the few remaining significant connections to mid-century Young Circle.
Today Publix supermarkets are a fixture in South Florida, but in the late 1950s/1960s, the Lakeland-based chain was just expanding into the state’s southern counties of Broward, Dade (now Miami-Dade), and Palm Beach as they were undergoing substantial population increases. The Publix-Walgreens shopping plaza at the east of the circle led to the demolition of the Park View Hotel, which had occupied the location since 1922. Opening on January 29, 1963, Publix store #88 sported the ‘winged’ facade, a hallmark of Publix throughout the decade. At 21,000 sq. feet, it would remain one of the smaller Publix units until the location was vacated in 2018 when a significantly larger store opened as a component of a mixed-use building on the northeast side of Young Circle. Incidentally, a 1960s high-rise apartment complex, the Town House, had occupied the location until its demolition in 2014.
Designed as quintessential mid-century structures, the Home Federal Saving & Loan and the Hollywood Bread buildings anchored the southeast quadrant of Young Circle. When opening in 1964, the Home Federal building offered commanding views of Young Circle and the Atlantic Coast. The structure’s architect, James M. Hartley, served as the architectural consultant to the newly founded Nova University of Advanced Technology (now Nova Southeastern University) in Davie, Florida. A multi-use building, Home Federal Savings occupied the first four floors, the Patio Coffee Shop on the fifth floor offering breakfast and lunch from Monday to Friday, and twelve floors of apartments. The building was capped by Dick Cami’s (aka. Richard Camillucci) Top of the Home restaurant, which was recognized at the time for its fine continental dining and spectacular views.
Although known as the Hollywood Bread Building, the adjacent Home Federal Savings actually owned the structure with Hollywood Bread occupying the office spaces. Construction began in 1967, and it formally opened in 1969 with five office floors and six parking floors that accommodated 411 spaces for both buildings. In the 1940s, Hollywood Bread founder Eleanor Hansberry developed a diet bread recipe that included eight vegetable flours. Noted movie personalities of the era, including Ann Blyth, Dorothy Hart, and Virginia Mayo, served as product spokespersons leading to the “Hollywood Bread” name. Hansberry relocated the company headquarters to Hollywood, Florida, in the 1960s. In 1969, the nation would get a glimpse of her empire and the Hollywood Bread Building when Hansberry appeared in an issue of Vogue magazine.
Following the death of Hansberry in 1978, the company lost momentum and would eventually be liquidated. Beginning in the 1990s, the Hollywood Bread Building was without tenants and slid into a state of disrepair. The structure was purchased by a development company seeking to erect a mixed-use highrise. The landmark Hollywood Bread Building signage was removed prior to demolition, with developers noting its planned incorporation into the new structure. Demolition began in August and concluded in October 2021.
Another Young Circle landmark was Moy’s Chinese-American Restaurant and Cocktail Lounge, which drew attention with its brilliant blue roof and large Buddha statue out front making it easily recognizable on the Northwest quadrant. George and Jeanne Goon Moy, the owners, arrived in Hollywood from New York in 1945 (possibly 1946). Initially, they purchased the Blue Plate Special restaurant and converted it to Moy’s, and then they opened a second location in Ft. Lauderdale (1954-1961). Upon the passing of George Moy in 1973, the restaurant was sold, and the building was ultimately demolished.
Constructed in 1924 under the direction of Joseph Young, the Great Southern Hotel occupied the Southwest quadrant of the Circle. Its architect, Martin Hampton, worked with famed Florida architect Addison Mizner. As with many of Mizner’s works, the Great Southern was in the Mediterranean revival style. As this blog post is focusing on Young Circle in the 1960s, the Great Southern and the nearby segment of downtown along Hollywood Boulevard appeared in the 1969 film Midnight Cowboy and a screenshot can be seen on the Tiki Lounge Talk website. The Great Southern was demolished in 2020, and along with the 2021 loss of the Hollywood Bread Building – the Home Federal Building stands as the final substantial link to 1960s Young Circle.
- Hollywood Historical Society
- Broward County Digital Archives
- Florida Memory
- Publix Supermarkets
- Bothel, Todd L., and Dan Santoro. Lost Restaurants of Fort Lauderdale. Charleston, SC: American Palate, 2020.
- Mickelson, Joan. “Florida’s Hollywood: History and People.” FLORIDA’S HOLLYWOOD: HISTORY and PEOPLE. Accessed October 15, 2021. https://joanmickelsonphd.wordpress.com/.
- “The Fascinating Tale of Hollywood Bread Founder Eleanor Hansberry, Hollywood’s Own Mid-Century Glamour Queen • Hollywood Gazette.” Hollywood Gazette, June 16, 2020. https://hollywoodgazette.com/2018/09/26/the-fascinating-tale-of-hollywood-bread-founder-eleanor-hansberry-hollywoods-own-mid-century-glamour-queen/.
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