Thursday, February 01, 2007


In southern Florida, the Town of Jupiter is considering annexation of Jonathan’s Landing. Now, there’s nothing particularly unusual about that, and while Jonathan’s Landing is an upscale golf course community, what preceded it was out of the ordinary.

Salhaven was a 1950s retirement community built for members of the Upholsters International Union. The name “Salhaven” referred to longtime union president Sal B. Hoffman. Hoffman envisioned a self-contained village where northern retirees could bask in the tropical sun alongside former co-workers. Salhaven had a lounge, a restaurant, an arts and crafts center, an auditorium, a cafeteria, and an educational building. A key service and feature of the Salhaven development was a convalescence center where retirees and non-retired union members received long-tern medical care. All of the buildings, including the houses, were built in a simple yet modern architectural style.

Salhaven received national press coverage, and was featured in the New York Times and Time magazine. However, the village never really caught on with its intended residents, who may have been reluctant to leave family, friends, and all that was familiar to move to an isolated part of Florida.

In the 1970s, a group of medical doctors bought Salhaven and sold 600 acres for what became Jonathan’s Landing. The Salhaven convalescence center evolved into the Palm Beach-Martin County Medical Center, which is now the Jupiter Medical Center.

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