Over the many years The Real Deal has covered South Florida real estate, we have referred numerous times to Miami’s push toward becoming a world-class city. We’ve quoted brokers, developers and designers on the subject in stories ranging from coverage of ever-taller towers to reportage on the Magic City’s appeal to investors abroad.
And this month, our cover story dives into an enormous project spearheaded by one developer — with many more investors in the mix, and on the hook — that exemplifies the first-class future Miami has always imagined for itself. The Design District promises to be a premier hub for luxury shopping, eating and for cultural experiences, too. Based on the deals we examined and the industry feedback we got, the project seems set to deliver. But questions about its ultimate success remain, and we explore all that here.
Much of the city’s reputation as an emerging global gateway can be attributed to its great interest to foreign buyers. While that affinity persists, currency devaluation and an unstable political climate worldwide continue to challenge South Florida brokerages to shift strategies to keep up their bottom lines. We look at a renewed focus on marketing to Canadian and U.S. buyers, and we rank the top agents in Miami and delve into how they’re adjusting to the downshift in the market. We also have the latest news and projects in the condo market starting. Homebuilders, too, are feeling the burn of the slowdown. We look at South Florida’s biggest homebuilders and the types of developments they’re pursuing in today’s market. We also examine the home mortgage market and the changes — some of which don’t bode well — that may be coming down the pike.
We also spoke to the top commercial lenders in the South Florida market to get their read on what financing looks like at this stage of the cycle. Those experts are counting on looser lending conditions under the new administration, and we look more at the Trump impact here. Elsewhere in commercial, the hotel market is not faring well, though it’s not all about Zika, but the office market appears to be on the upswing, thanks to the foreign investors who are MIA on the residential side of things. And the industrial sector is lighting up in South Florida thanks to the recent legalization of medical marijuana, which has sparked bidding wars over warehouse space.
And finally, in a Q&A with developer Alan Faena, we dive into the personal history and creative forces at work behind his eponymously named Miami Beach district.
Enjoy the issue!