Miles Antique Mall building to be demolished, replaced by Hilton hotel

Jake Newby
Pensacola News Journal

After permanently closing at the end of 2020, Miles Antique Mall on Bayou Boulevard soon will be replaced by a hotel. 

Signage in front of the closed store at 5109 Bayou Blvd. indicates that a Home2 Suites by Hilton hotel will be built in place of the former antique store after it is demolished. 

Miles Antique Mall sustained significant damage during Hurricane Sally in September 2020, which was the catalyst for the owners to close a store with 62 years of history. Around the same time, owners Bill and Diane Campbell received an offer from a developer to buy the building and opted to accept. 

A sign announces a new Home2 Suites by Hilton coming soon to the location of the former Miles Antique Mall on Bayou Boulevard in Pensacola.

"An opportunity presented itself, and I knew that there probably would never come another time in my lifetime where the entire building had been emptied (because of the hurricane) and a developer had made me a fantastic offer at the same time," Bill Campbell told the News Journal during a December 2020 interview. "So I had to jump on it. You can’t go swimming without getting wet."

A timeline for construction was not clear Friday. The engineer listed on signage for the project and representatives with the credit union financing the construction could not be reached for comment Friday.

A sign announces a new Home2 Suites by Hilton coming soon to the location of the former Miles Antique Mall on Bayou Boulevard in Pensacola.

►When and why Miles closed:Pensacola's Miles Antique Mall closes permanently after 62-year run

Miles Antique Mall began as Miles Furniture Store, opening on Pace Boulevard in 1958. The store was co-owned by Bill Campbell’s father, W.E. Campbell, and businessman Miles Henslee, who owned the majority stake in the company.

A sign announces a new Home2 Suites by Hilton coming soon to the location of the former Miles Antique Mall on Bayou Boulevard in Pensacola on Friday.

In 1971, W.E. Campbell and Henslee built the 65,000-square-foot building on Bayou Boulevard that still stands today, and continued selling retail furniture made in America. In 2003, Bill and Diane Campbell bought the company, and after the 2008 recession, they converted it into an antique mall and renamed the store Miles Antique Mall. 

The business concept took off almost immediately. The store quickly filled with vendor booths selling antiques, toys, pottery, arts and crafts, furniture and a vast array of other goods. The vendors rented their booth space and the Campbells processed the sales and managed the store itself. 

The store eventually reached the status of Florida's largest antique mall. 

“It had a little bit of everything,” Bill Campbell said in December. "I had a lot of individual people, people as far north as Pennsylvania, bringing me truckloads of antiques. I had companies, like Waterfront Rescue Mission, that had booths. I had one lady that actually owned a toy store, and she closed it down and said, 'I get 100 times the traffic in your store, and all I have to do is pay the rent.'"

Jake Newby can be reached at jnewby@pnj.com or 850-435-8538.