South Florida report

Real estate news in the Sunshine State

Jan.January 01, 2014 07:00 AM
Bloomingdale's at the Miami Worldcenter

Bloomingdale’s at the Miami Worldcenter

Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s ink Worldcenter leases

The developers behind two of the largest mixed-use projects in Greater Downtown Miami, Brickell CityCentre and Miami Worldcenter, are fiercely competing to attract strong retail tenants.

Worldcenter, a massive development with a planned 750,000 square feet of retail space, notched a major victory by signing Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s as anchors. Combined, they are set to occupy 315,000 square feet.

For Bloomingdale’s, the transaction represents its first foray into downtown. Macy’s has an existing Downtown location on East Flagler Street. The lease raises questions about that store’s future.

The nine-square-block Worldcenter site is positioned between Brickell CityCentre and Midtown Miami, and is experiencing a wave of residential development.

CityCentre developer Swire Properties has partnered with the Whitman family, which built and owns the Bal Harbour Shops, for the retail component of the $1.1 billion project in the financial district. No retail tenants have been announced, but recent reports indicate Mario Batali’s Eataly market is set to sign a lease there.

Real estate industry mobilizes for Art Basel

South Florida developers and brokers hustled to promote their residential projects and existing buildings to wealthy patrons of Art Basel Miami Beach, which drew tens of thousands of art enthusiasts to Miami last month.

Recognizing the potential for making contacts that could lead to sales, more than 20 real estate events were held throughout Miami-Dade County alongside the official Art Basel gatherings. Industry professionals bounced from party to party to chat up potential buyers.

Real estate brokerages Douglas Elliman and EWM hosted exclusive receptions at the two largest Art Basel locations. Elliman promoted its Miami and New York developments at the VIP Collectors Lounge inside the Miami Beach Convention center. EWM and affiliates at Christie’s International Real Estate sponsored Art Miami 2013 in Midtown and hosted an invite-only reception.

Faena Miami Beach developer Alan Faena also took the A-list route, hosting a private dinner party at the Collins Avenue site of the $1 billion mixed-use project. Guests included acclaimed director Baz Luhrmann and his Academy Award-winning wife Catherine Martin, who are working with Faena to reposition the former Saxony Hotel as part of the broader development. Leonardo DiCaprio and film mogul Harvey Weinstein also attended the bash.

Beckham, Miami set to talk soccer stadium site

Soccer legend David Beckham’s attempt to bring a Major League Soccer franchise to Miami took several turns last month.

Beckham’s investor group, Beckham Brand Limited, identified the southwest section of Biscayne Bay seaport PortMiami as a potential MLS stadium location. He asked Miami-Dade County officials to consider a 25,000-seat stadium, marina and waterfront promenade for the 25-acre site.

A group of commissioners gave initial approval to plans for the PortMiami zoning district that would allow private development, but they do not include a stadium.

Nevertheless, the county was ready to begin talks with Beckham on a site. “We hope to send a strong message to MLS and Beckham’s group to bring them here,” Mayor Carlos Gimenez said.


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