The Real Deal Miami

Ian Schrager’s Miami Beach condo tower nears completion – with some surprises

Condo docs show Edition’s $34M penthouse smaller than developer indicated publicly

October 21, 2014 02:47PM
By Peter Zalewski

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Residences at Miami Beach Edition rendering (inset: Peter Zalewski)

Residences at Miami Beach Edition (inset: Peter Zalewski)

International hotelier Ian Schrager took a step closer to the long-anticipated completion of his Residences At The Miami Beach Edition project with the filing of the official Declaration of Condominium for the ultra-luxury complex, but not without some surprises.

The 135-page condominium declaration recorded on Sept. 30 with the Miami-Dade County Clerk of the Court reveals Schrager’s project – officially known as the 2901 Collins Condominium – will have 25 condos – not the 26 units that are still being marketed on the project’s official website as of today – located in an 18-story structure fronting the Atlantic Ocean in Miami Beach.

The condominium declaration also shows the pair of penthouses in the project that reportedly went under contract in March 2013 for $34 million to a U.S. buyer who plans to combine the units into single condo will have 9,207 square feet of living space, less than the nearly 10,000 square feet cited by Schrager in a Bloomberg News article.

Even with the reduced square footage, the reported price tag for the two penthouse units as described in the condominium declaration works out to less than $3,700 per square foot, not the “record” $3,800 that Schrager announced some 20 months ago during an appearance on Bloomberg TV’s “In The Loop” program with Betty Liu.

Schrager declined to comment, according to a spokesperson.

No transactions have been recorded in Miami-Dade County for the 2901 Collins Condominium project as of Tuesday, so it is unclear if “half of the units” in the project went under contract for an average sales price of $3,000 per square foot, as Schrager said in the TV interview.

What is clear is that a trio of units in the 2901 Collins Condominium are being marketed for sale on the MLXchange at an average price of less than $2,530 per square foot at a time when a flurry of new projects are available for purchase.

As of today, the 2901 Collins Condominium is one of at least 27 new condo towers totaling 1,350 units to be developed in Miami Beach during this cycle, according to the preconstruction condo projects website

(For disclosure purposes, my firm operates the website.)

Overall, developers have announced nearly 290 new condo towers totaling more than 38,000 units on sites located east of I-95 in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.

For buyers of units in the 2901 Collins Condominium, the monthly maintenance fee will average about $1.47 per square foot, according to government records.

Based on this average, monthly maintenance fees for individual units in this ultra-luxury project are set to range from less than $1,250 to more than $7,350, according to the condominium declaration.

Buyers who purchase units in the 2901 Collins Condominium will be permitted to rent out their condos to tenants up to four times a year as long as the minimum lease is for 30 days.

The unanswered question going forward is whether Schrager will have any surprises in the coming months when buyers of the 2901 Collins Condominium are asked to close their purchases upon completion of the project.

Peter Zalewski is real estate columnist for The Real Deal who founded Condo Vultures LLC, a consultancy and publishing company, as well as Condo Vultures Realty LLC and CVR Realty brokerages and the Condo Ratings Agency, an analytics firm. The Condo Ratings Agency operates, a preconstruction condo projects website, in conjunction with the Miami Association of Realtors.

  • fupeter

    The Real Deal needs to seriously consider whether continuing its relationship with Peter Zalewski is truly beneficial to its product and reputation. It is embarrassing for the readers and for journalism as a profession that the same generic material is rehashed literally over and over again by this man from column to column. And I’m not just saying that — read his articles. The same lines and phrases are used over and over again in each article; he just swaps in and out the people/project he’s writing about. When is the last time one of his articles didn’t finish with the phrase “The unanswered question going forward…” followed by babble about how the market will fall apart sooner or later? His template is simple: he writes a few paragraphs about the topic at hand followed by numerous paragraphs filled with the same statistics as every other one of his columns. And lest we forget about the ever-present, shameless plugs for his profit-starved side companies. It’s great to have a journalist challenge the status quo from time to time; but to employ a guy who is nothing more than a Cassandra, whose entire living depends on doubting and erroneously frightening the public regarding the very marketplace that provides him any opportunity to make a living, I call foul. Ask the developers of the Crimson in Edgewater for their take on Peter Zalewski’s “expertise.” Our so called “expert” Zalewski somehow convinced them to give him the exclusive sales agreement for all of the units. Word on the street is that he didn’t sell more than one unit over the course of many months and was eventually fired and replaced by a real firm. Interesting that the same guy who is so hell-bent on his mission to convince everyone that the developers are all wrong is the same guy who was begging for an opportunity to sell their product. This guy is a fraud, plain and simple, and it’s unfortunate that he continues to have this podium to spew his sh*t from.

    • jake

      He only writes these articles to promote himself which is sad. Most journalist write because they love writing and giving great ideas/thoughts/facts to the public. If this guy knew so much about when the market was really going to drop out he would be a billionaire like Jeff Green. This guy is fraud.

    • al czverik

      Real Deal should reconsider this hire, without a doubt. While personal comments about the author are not necessary, it is clear that this “reporting” is far to sophomoric for the Real Deal.
      It’s as if the author is learning real estate as he blunders along.
      So The Residences at Edition Miami Beach has 25 registered units instead of 26 as initially advertised…. whoa…. Stop the presses!!! Nefarious developer, Peter knew it! OR is it that one buyer, bought 2 units and put them together under one unified title? 2 units combined =1 unit. 26 – 1 = 25.
      This author doesn’t know enough about real estate to fact check.

      The PH was widely reported to be sold for $34M for 10,000 square feet off of an initial plan. That the finished product is reported in the tax roll as 9,200 Sq ft is not news. Tax appraisers, building managers, developers, and flooring installers always have different measurements. Again, not news.

    • Kristian Toimil

      …It almost sounds like he is a Cassandra, knowing all (or in the case, the impending burst of the real estate bubble) but being believed by none.

  • realtalk

    This is pretty pathetic. This type of reporting definitely would not be celebrated nor published in the New York Real Deal. Too bad there is such a lack of talent in South Florida.

    This guy is chartering buses to charge people for pre-construction tours and his property is in foreclosure. How broke can you be? Physician heal thyself.

  • mondocondo

    This type of a smear job discredits the Real Deal and Zapewski. The points he makes are petty:
    – 26 v 25 units is easily accounted for by the consolidation of the penthouse, which the article even notes
    – The reported price of the penthouse sale of $3,800 vs. the $3,696 implied by the dec is only a 3% delta. Why call out a guy on a difference that small?
    The fact that Zalewski is a Cassandra and biased is hardly news, but to try to publicly embarrass a reputable developer over this type of nonsense is beyond the pale.
    This should be a red flag for the Herald as well, which has given this guy a byline.

  • Pondering

    It is clear that the commentators below are either involved
    with this project or have some sort of connection to be this irate, hiding behind a user name. To me, the
    message is very clear- buyers beware, be informed. Seems like someone is
    looking out for buyers like myself . Who else is going to go after the status
    quo? I don’t see anyone else doing it, for that I applaud you Zalewski.

    • Falafel


    • orly

      Sure, Peter and or his wife/employee. Whatever you say.

  • Li M.P. Crane

    I have to agree with the majority of the responders – Peter Zalewski is a detraction. TRD needs to be more concerned about it’s reputation for honest, unbiased reporting and, associating with Mr. Zalewski and allowing him to frequently write “articles” on the South Florida website is, IMO, a clear conflict of interest. TRD has become a go-to source for South Florida real estate news; do not blow it by continuing this relationship.