The Miami Court was the first motel in Ocean City. Built in 1948 by Ridge Harman Sr. on 22nd Street and Philadelphia Avenue, the site is now the parking lot for Fish Tales and Bahia Marina.
The term motel comes from “motor-hotel.” A motel offered lower-priced accommodations in a less formal setting with “drive up to the doorstep parking.” This appealed to families with young children in the post-World War II “baby boom” era.
Within a decade, motels had sprung up all over Ocean City and the area from 15th to 33rd streets became known as “motel row.”
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Photo courtesy of Kathleen Harman