South Florida briefs: TRD’s monthly roundup of news from the Sunshine State

Jul.July 01, 2013 07:00 AM
Miami skyline

Miami skyline

Red-hot luxury sales lead So. Fla. housing recovery

South Florida’s luxury market is on fire, leading the region’s housing recovery with a spurt of priciest-ever sales. A $30 million deal for New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez’s nine-bedroom home set a new mark for Miami Beach and the $17.5 million paid for a Fort Lauderdale mansion smashed the Broward County record, the Miami Herald reported. “We’ve seen an increase in prices and demand,’’ said Sheryl Hodor of Prudential Florida Realty. During the real estate crisis, she said, the ultra-high end sagged but didn’t plummet. As Beth Butler of One Sotheby’s put it: “Last to drop, first to rally.”

A face-off for a $1B public project in Miami Beach

Two development teams are vying for the $1 billion-plus contract to overhaul the Miami Beach Convention Center and 52 acres of public land, the city’s biggest public works project in a century. Developers Portman-CMC and South Beach ACE are facing off for the project. (One of the companies behind South Beach ACE is New York–based Tishman Hotel and Realty, headed by Dan Tishman.) The project’s costs will be roughly split between the city, through a new penny tax on hotel beds, and the developer, who will lease the land. Both plans for the 52 acres call for condo homes, parks, cultural venues, retail shops and a hotel. City commissioners are expected to vote on the proposals July 17.

Related Group returns to affordable housing

The Related Group of Florida, the Miami area’s biggest developer, is investing more in affordable housing — both to ease the city’s acute shortage of low-income units and to balance its luxury-heavy portfolio, principal and co-founder Jorge Perez told The Real Deal. One in three of the Related Group’s 41 projects are in the affordable housing sector. When the real estate market collapsed, Perez had 11 condo projects under construction; 80 lenders held well over $2 billion in debt. “It’s partly diversification — we’re looking to not put all our eggs in one basket into condominiums,” said Perez. “It’s partly demand.”

More young New Yorkers go south for second homes

Many New Yorkers have found their second homes in South Florida. And they’re younger than ever before, brokers say. Today’s buyers are a hipper crowd and are “looking at Miami like they are looking in the Hamptons,” Douglas Elliman’s Jacky Teplitzky, who sells in both markets, recently told Manhattanites want Sunshine State homes that have all the extras — swimming pool, tennis court, spa, ocean view — and that are close to high-end shopping centers.

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