The Real Deal Miami

Miami is a billionaire homebuyer’s paradise — these are some of its most important luxury condos and mansions

February 21, 2016 12:00PM
By Business Insider

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Welcome to Miami, home of the fabulously beautiful and fabulously wealthy.

Foreign buyers — many of them anonymous — have poured cash into Miami’s real-estate market for years. Think mansions priced at over $20 million, condos pimped out with private rooftop pools, and spec houses with wild extras. Big-name architects like Renzo Piano, Rafael Viñoly, and Zaha Hadid are knee-deep in the Miami property game, turning the city’s skyline into a feast of postmodern towers.

A recent report from RealtyTrac noted that real-estate transactions in South Florida hit a record in 2015, closing 114,002 single-family home and condo sales.

“It’s a buyer’s market,” luxury real-estate broker Oren Alexander of Douglas Elliman told Business Insider. Alexander and his brother, Tal, are known for listing high-end properties in New York and Miami, including the $50 million penthouse at the top of Manhattan’s Plaza Hotel.

“There’s no bigger transfer of wealth than from New York to Miami right now,” Alexander said.

But lately there’s been talk of softening markets in New York and Miami. Some have said there has been a slower influx of foreign capital thanks to a weakened Brazilian real and Russian ruble. Meanwhile, stricter regulations on all-cash, anonymous real-estate purchases — a favorite of foreign investors — have been introduced, potentially throwing some cold water on the boom.

Let Business Insider be your guide to some of the most noteworthy pieces of property in this beach paradise.

This stretch of Florida coast is bursting with high-end properties, from luxury condo developments to celebrity-owned estates. Each neighborhood has its own vibe, whether the urban landscape of downtown or the secluded getaways of Indian Creek.

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Google Maps

Market fluctuations don’t change the fact that for many, the convenience and benefits of the Miami area just can’t be beat, Alexander says. Celebrities and hedge funders have certainly caught on, fueling the continued development and constant sales.

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Let’s start up north, at Sunny Isles Beach. The Ritz-Carlton Residences is a 52-story tower where a 51st-floor penthouse — with its own infinity pool, terrace, and five bedrooms — has already sold for upward of $21 million. About 60% of the other units are also spoken for, though the tower isn’t scheduled to be complete until 2018.

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Also at Sunny Isles Beach: the Residences by Armani Casa, which is being developed for a whopping $1 billion. It’s a 60-floor tower topped by a penthouse that’s listed for $15 million — and when you buy the penthouse, you’ll also get a free trip to Italy to meet designer Giorgio Armani. There are 308 units in the massive tower, starting at $1.85 million. Curbed Miami reports that more than half have already sold.

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Just south is 252 Bal Bay Drive, an independent residence developed by Alexander and his father, Shlomy. Priced at $36 million, the waterfront estate can also come with a Jaguar and a yacht. The last time this team worked together on a spec house — at 3 Indian Creek — it sold for $47 million, which in 2012 was a record for Miami.

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A few blocks down, you’ll find the enclave known to locals as Billionaire’s Bunker. Indian Creek Village is home to figures like business tycoon Carl Icahn, hedge funder Eddie Lampert, and supermodel Adriana Lima. There are 35 homes scattered across the island, with an average value of more than $21 million.

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Next up, 87 Park is an oceanfront condo complex ensconced in 40 acres of pristine parkland. Scheduled for completion in 2018, this is architect Renzo Piano’s first residential project in the US, and penthouses are expected to sell for as much as $45 million.

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In the heart of Miami Beach lies Pine Tree House, a brand-new spec home with its very own two-story water slide attached to the house. The $34 million property houses six bedrooms in its 13,500 square feet, and it also has 100 feet of water frontage onto Indian Creek Canal.

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Miami Beach’s luxe 18-story Faena House — just built last year — includes billionaire hedge funder Ken Griffin’s top-floor penthouse, which recently hit the market for $55 million. When he bought it, it was the most expensive real-estate deal in Miami. The beachfront condo tower offers valet and concierge service, two pools, and a spa and fitness center with ocean views.

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Architect Zaha Hadid is designing the 62-story One Thousand Museum, a luxury condo complex in Miami’s Museum Park. The six-bedroom penthouse unit is more than 15,000 square feet and priced at $50 million. It comes with a private indoor pool and elevator — but all future residents will be able to make use of the rooftop helipad and top-floor lounge space.

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects

One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid Architects

One River Point (lit up in the rendering below) is the latest of the Miami River luxury developments. A double tower connected by a skywalk 800 feet up, its penthouses are listing for over $14 million, while a nearly 15,000-square-foot “sky villa” is priced at over $35 million.

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Brickell Heights is another monster double-tower condo development in Miami’s financial district, complete with twin rooftop pools. It boasts an Equinox gym and SoulCycle studio inside the complex, as well as a community vegetable garden. A three-bedroom unit will run you a couple million once it’s complete in early 2017.

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Out on Key Biscayne, this new 10,000-square-foot seven-bedroom contemporary mansion clocks in at just under $30 million. That’s because it has 100 feet of private sunset-facing beach with Miami skyline views — a rare combination.

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