Satellite Motel

Cocoa Beach, Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA

Closed 1984

The Disappointed Tourist: Satellite Motel, Ellen Harvey, 2024. Oil and acrylic on Gessoboard, 24 x 18″ 61 x 46 cm). Photograph: Etienne Frossard.

From the glory dates of the Moonshot. Anon.

The Satellite Motel in Cocoa Beach was known for its neon sign, topped with a globe 10 feet in diameter and two orbiting satellites. Lightning struck the globe in the 1970’s and it fell for good in 1984 when the motel closed. The owner Tom Birkhead, a retired Air Force colonel, claimed that city ordinances prohibited its restoration.  The painting is based on an uncredited photograph.