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The Tivoli Series

The Tivoli Hotel, the Grande Dame of the Riviera of the South, no longer exists.
She is gone forever; one of our many histo ric landmarks destroyed by Hurricane Katrina.
Photographs are the only reminder of what was once one of the premier destination
resorts of the Gulf Coast in the Roaring Twenties and the Thirties.

This page showcases the photographs taken shortly before the Tivoli was torn down by the wrecking ball. They are among my most favorite photographs because they epitomize the very soul of this once magnificent building. I wish I had known The Tivoli Hotel in its time of glory. Even in its state of total decline, all you had to do was close your eyes, conjure the sounds of an orchestra playing in the Grand Ballroom and your mind would take you back in time where your imagination takes over and you are actually there, dancing to the music, laughing and having a grand time.

To the ghosts of the Tivoli Past: You are sorely missed.



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Read the History of the Tivoli Hotel

 

Tivoli Photographs

 

"Window to Our World: View from the Tivoli"

Looking out from a 5th story front window
onto the ruins of the Biloxi Yacht Club piers
and Deer Island that had all vegetation killed.

Winner of two awards in 2006:
Best Photograph - Gulf Coast Art Association Annual Snow
Sun Herald Award - Best Photograph -
Ocean Springs Art Association Show 2006

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"Rooms for Rent"

A suite of abandoned rooms once pristine.

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"The Alcove"

A lighted alcove on the mezzanine floor that
goes nowhere, yet this unique area was part of the majesty that once was grand architecture.

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"Elegance Revisited"

If walls could talk, these walls graced by wide
crown molding and age showing by peeling paint
in the Mezzanine would have thousands of stories
to tell. Close your eyes and listen.

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"Doors to Nowhere"

Doors and doorways in a room
long abandoned.

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"Room 409"

When you stand in the darkened room across
the hall from Room 409, you can imagine
the visitors looking out over the Gulf
from their window.

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"Tivoli Destroyed"

This is the eastern side of the front of the Tivoli. Had it not been for the huge Grand
Casino gambling barge breaking loose from
its moorings, this hotel might could have been saved. The storm surge washed the huge barge over four lanes of Highway 49 and carried it westward where it hit the corner and knock a good portion of four stories away.

News stories told of how people who were staying in the newer (perhaps 50's era, but plainly a second rate motel) Tivoli Motel on
the property made their way to the top floor
to wait out the storm. Some of them drowned
in the storm surge before they reached safety.

Photo Available Upon Request.

"Penthouse Suite"

 


With light coming in from an outside window,
casting a daylight hue to the floor and walls
where it hits, the rest of this aging room must
have been one of the finest suites available.
The dumb waiter door to the left and overturned
table can be seen while the darkened raised
ceiling adds emphasis to the door that is opening.

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"Room with a View"

 

Although this room was on the eastern side
of the hotel, visitors still had a view of
the Gulf to their right. This photograph
shows what was left of the George Ohr
Museum that was designed by world-
renound Frank Ghery
and had begun construction before Katrina
hit. With walls gone from the casino barge,
it had a much better view than when the
hotel was in operation.

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"Tivoli's Folly "

 

Taken from the mezzanine, this enhanced photograph
of the damaged eastern walls shows what was left
of the grand ballroom. Remnants of the fancy
light fixtures hung from the ceiling. Can't you
hear the music playing in a ghostly mist?

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The Old Tivoli Hotel

This is a historic postcard of the Tivoli Hotel in its heyday. There was a swimming pool in the front where visitors could swim and look at the view of the Gulf.

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Note Cards

A box of ten 5 X 7 note cards printed on Strathmore Watercolor Paper card stock.
The set will contain ten Tivoli images with envelopes that are suitable for framing.
Price: $45.00 plus $5.00 shipping and handling.

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Purchase Tivoli Collection Images


Sizes vary because of the format of the photographs. Due to the fact that some of
these photographs were taken with a Mamiya 645 medium format camera, some of
the sizes are not equivalent to those taken with a 35mm camera.

Southern Creations, Inc. uses a professional Epson printer that is used by many
professional photographers. Using special archival papers, images are rated to last
for at least 100 years provided they are framed behind glass and kept out of direct sunlight.
All price quotes do not include matting.

 

Please allow time for images to be sized and printed as they are printed to order.
Any size over 12 X 19 (either dimension) will be printed by a lab, so allow extra time.

 


No fine art photographs will be shipped as a digital file by e-mail.
Actual prints may be ordered.

All Rush Orders - Add $25.00
(as in "I need it today or tomorrow")
Please allow adequate time to custom print (or order from a photo lab a large print)
and mail before the date you need the photograph(s).

Contact

228.388.4088

All images are printed in house on archival Premium Luster paper on a professional printer with archival inks rated to last 100 years. Sizes range from 8 X 12 for most images to 16 X 20 (not including mats).

Larger sizes available by special order. They will be printed on quality paper from a reputable photo lab. Rights of use are available.


Purchase Other Fine Art Images

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Copyright Notice for Linda S. Nix Photographs and Images:

Any unauthorized use of any photographs on any of these web pages is prohibited by law.

Contents of this page, including all text and photographs, are copyrighted
by Linda Saxon Nix and may not be copied, downloaded,
or used in any manner
without her written consent.


(Copyright 1997 - 2010 by Linda Saxon Nix).

None of these photographs are in public domain. They may not be downloaded, printed, manipulated, made into web graphics or Paint Shop Pro tubes, used on personal or corporate web pages, used as art reference,  stored, reproduced electronically or digitally, used in or placed in any image or photography gallery, online or print without explicit, written permission. If you see anyone offering any of my photographs in any form on the Internet
or elsewhere, please contact me at the e-mail address above.

The Story of
The Tivoli Hotel
Circa 1927

 


"The Tivoli Hotel was one of the few remaining Grande Dame resorts of the 1920s, built during a time when the Mississippi Gulf Coast was known as the American Riviera. The hotel was featured as an apartment hotel with 64 guest rooms on four floors. The first floor contained a striking barrel-vaulted lobby with a magnificent ballroom to one side and the large dining room to the other." The ballroom could be viewed from an open mezzanine over a short wrought iron rail. The Mezzanine contained excellent architectural features, some of which are pictured in Nix's photographs. From that vantage point, one could see elegant chandeliers hung by long chains from a two-story tall ceiling.
A different report stated that the Tivoli "boasted 100 rooms with private baths and 24 apartments with baths and kitchenettes". A spacious verandah spanning the length of its façade gave guests a continuous panorama of the Gulf. It had five stories, a swimming pool in front, and was surrounded by picturesque Live oaks. The view of the beach area was outstanding.
According to newspaper accounts, the Tivoli opened "in a whirl of dancing, a kaleidoscopic blaze of color and a musical festival of barbaric jazz." Over the years, more modern hotels came along and The Tivoli slowly skipped into the past. Through the years, many attempts have been made to restore the building to its former glory, including plans to turn it into a halfway house, a resort, and a health center, and, lastly, a casino. Despite these efforts, the building was sitting empty except for the homeless and the transients who burrowed in, using mattresses that were left over, waiting to be called a Grande Dame once again, when Hurricane Katrina hit on August 29, 2005.
My personal impression of the Tivoli as I photographed it was that it was a unique and fascinating structure. I found myself wanting to go back in time to experience the splendor that her guests must have enjoyed. More than that, I wanted The Tivoli to be preserved. The building had lovely arches, ornamental ironwork railing, and little balconies to look over, and ornamental woodwork and where walls met ceilings. Although it was dirty and in disrepair, I found much to delight in, and many artistic scenes to capture. Even the peeling paint on the walls and doors expressed faded dignity.
Several years ago a New Orleans developer had an option on the property, with plans to redeveloping it into high-end condominiums. The plans went nowhere because the owner had wanted to turn it into a small-scale casino. The Tivoli was built like a ten ton cement barricade. It had solid concrete structure and stairwells, was adorned with arches and crown molding, and would have lasted for centuries had the Grand Casino barge not broken loose and been hurled into the southeast corner by the powerful storm surges to destroy the lobby and three more floors. It was the Grand Casino barge that ultimately destroyed it. Had the barge not hit its southeastern corner, it could still be standing today. I feel sure that, since it would have been one of the very few historical landmarks left on the Coast, it would have been refurbished and stood in its glory once again.
I feel most fortunate that I was able to go inside the Tivoli twice during the spring and summer of 2006 and photograph the faded elegance of the once Grande Dame. These photographs are some of my most poignant and memorable images.
The Tivoli was demolished the week after my last photo shoot. With each click of the shutter I had wished it could have been refurbished to its original grandeur. With a few blows from the wrecking ball, it was demolished and is forever gone. It exists only in the photographs and the memories in the recesses of very old minds. It is my pleasure to be able to share some of those poignant memories with you.

Linda Saxon Nix ~ December 2006

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This page created January 27, 2007
Updated 4/9/0, 5/10/08, 1/13/10, 5/5/10