ENCINITAS, Calif. — A pair of homes in Encinitas could soon be recognized nationally as historic landmarks. In August, a state commission will consider that distinction for two boathouses that have been docked in Encinitas for nearly a century.
The 50-foot, two-story boats, located in the middle of an Encinitas neighborhood, were never sea-faring and are actual homes built in 1928. They were built by Michigan man Miles Kellogg who used timber salvaged from a local bathhouse and an old hotel called the Moonlight Beach Dance Parlor – an 1888 hotel that failed to survive Prohibition, according to the Encinitas Historical Society.
"It's a perfect example of re-purposing or recycling which is very much a part of the DNA of Encinitas," said Tom Cozens with the Encinitas Preservation Association.
The two-bedroom homes, named the S.S. Encinitas and the S.S. Moonlight, are part of a six-unit apartment complex and are anchored in the history of Encinitas. News 8 footage seen below from 1978 includes an interview with a couple that lived in one at the time.
The two boathouses have changed hands over the decades. In 2008 the Encinitas Preservation Association bought the property for $1.5-million. The association is now pushing to get the two unique residences on a national historic registry.
The Office of Historic Preservation will hold a meeting Aug. 1 to consider putting the site of on the National Register of Historic Places. Representatives of the preservation group call it a slam dunk and say there shouldn’t be any issues unless someone appeals, but they don’t see that happening.
Currently, one boathouse is under renovation and the other one is occupied by a tenant.
Once the preservation association has paid down debt owed on the homes, it hopes to make one of the homes available for public tours on a regular basis. For the next several years, however, the organization needs to rent out the units in order to pay the mortgage and raise funds to restore them.
They estimate they will need $750,000 for their plans.
The boathouses are not currently open to the public but are located on Third Street to drive by and take a look.
From the News 8 archives, this 1978 report give us a look at who was living in the S.S. Moonlight 40+ years ago and a glimpse of the interior:
See below for a quick look inside the S.S. Encinitas as it looks in 2019: