What you need to know about Lakeland’s historic homes + buildings

From what classifies a building as historic to where you can find them around Swan City, we’ve got the answer to your most pressing real estate questions.

Mediterranean Revival style historic home in the Biltmore/Cumberland district of Lakeland, FL

This Mediterranean Revival home was built around 1925.

Photo via Florida Memory

If there’s one thing besides swans that Lakelanders have an affinity for, it’s historic homes + buildings. While embarking on this journey to the past can be daunting, have no fear. We’ve rounded up a quick guide on Lakeland’s historic real estate to help you get the lay of the land.

What makes a property historic?

In 2023, the city’s historic preservation guidelines received an update. Now, buildings that were built before 1973 and have a distinct and authentic architectural style based on the time of construction can be considered “contributing structures.”

Historic home in Biltmore-Cumberland district of Lakeland, FL

This Biltmore/Cumberland historic home features a porte-cochere (aka a covered driveway).

Photo via Florida Memory

Key historic districts

  • Munn Park | Initially designed as a town square, this district was created before Lakeland even became incorporated in 1885. Afterwards, it served as the rail yard’s backdrop.
  • Biltmore Cumberland | This district alone contains 200+ historic buildings and is close to Lakes Hollingsworth and Bonny.
  • Lake Hunter Terrace | Despite rising up more than a decade after the other districts on this list, this development was the first of its kind to achieve historic status in Lakeland.
  • Beacon Hill | This neighborhood not only features breathtaking historic villas but is also close to local businesses and shopping centers on Lakeland’s south side.
  • Dixieland | This 160-acre neighborhood serves as the heart of the city with its central location, while maintaining a whimsical feel thanks to its cobblestone roads, oak trees, and walkable paths.
  • Lake Morton | Hailed as one of Lakeland’s oldest neighborhoods, East and South Lake Morton are best known for being the home to our city’s treasured swans, ducks, and blue herons — just to name a few.
A historic home with striped awnings and a gable roof

This historic house was home to former Lakeland mayor Edward L. Mack.

Photo via Florida Memory

Notable historic homes

Now that you’re an expert on historic homes, check out this quiz to test your knowledge on other historic buildings around Swan City.

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