The Don Vicente was originally built in 1895 by Vicente Ybor, who founded Ybor City. He used the property as the Ybor Land and Improvement Company. This was the planning and development office Mr. Ybor used in order to design and create many of the buildings of Ybor City. At the turn of the last century, the building became a health care clinic known as El Bien Publico, or “The Good Public.” Medical services in Ybor City were unique in the United States, as they were what can be described as beginning of what we now call HMO’s. In 1935 the clinic changed names to the A.A. Gonzalez Clinic, which continued to provide very affordable medical care to the residents of Ybor City until it closed in 1968.
The building then sat for three decades before being purchased by Jack Shiver. The thirty years had not been kind to the old Gonzalez clinic as fire and water damage ripped through floors and the ceiling. There were walls, and then there was the original marble staircase, that is still here today. It took two years and two million dollars to renovate the old clinic to what it is now today the Don Vicente de Ybor, Historic Inn and Venue.