Kid-friendly Brickell

A view of Brickell
A view of Brickell

Miami’s Brickell neighborhood is the heart of South Florida’s new building boom.

All kinds of developments are on the drawing board or are already going up. The highest-profile may be Swire Properties’ massive $1 billon mixed-use Brickell CityCentre — 5.4 million square feet of space divided into Class A office buildings and retail shops, a hotel, 800 apartments and restaurants.

But two other projects — both luxury condo towers — are getting noticed not for size or cost, but for whom they’re targeting as buyers: Echo Brickell and 1010 Brickell are reaching out to families.

Key International Sales’ 1010 Brickell is the newest of the 39 — yes, 39 — towers coming to the neighborhood. Designed by the Miami-based architectural partnership Sieger Suarez – known for Apogee South Beach, the St. Regis, the Porsche Tower and the Murano – the 50-story tower will have 387 units.

Sales are set to launch by mid-November, and 1010 Brickell intends to distinguish itself by targeting working couples with kids over international investors, said Liliana Paez, Key International’s sales and marketing director.

“1010 Brickell is a unique project for Downtown Miami in that it merges fashion with functionality,” Paez told The Real Deal.

1010’s amenities — many offered by most luxury towers, others tailored for the young ones and their parents — and its pricing are what Key International is counting on to draw families in.

A one-bedroom home starts at $300,000 and a three-bedroom unit tops out at $700,000, amounts that most upper-middle-class households in Miami can swing.

As for amenities, there’s a bowling alley and a soccer area, gourmet food service and private elevators. But there is also The Club at 1010, a duplex recreation center stationed on the 11th and 12th floors, with an all-glass fitness center, a children’s gymnasium, a gaming arcade, a spa and a swimming pool. The transparent design — one of Sieger Suarez’s signature aesthetics — will let moms and dads see their kids from any vantage.

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“You can be on the treadmill while watching your kid in the gymnasium,” Paez said, adding that Key International is able to give buyers so much at such moderate prices because it paid only $11 million — during the bust — for the tower’s 60,000-square-foot footprint.

That a new Downtown residential project is targeting families already living in South Florida shows just how much Brickell has changed. The neighborhood is better known as a bastion of foreign investors hungry for super-prime property and well-to-do businessmen working nearby.

“Today Brickell is place where everyday people want live and raise their kids,” Paez said. “They want city culture, while most investors want the beach.”

Like 1010 Brickell, Echo Brickell is offering more affordable homes. The 57-tower tower, developed by New York City-based Property Markets Group, will have 180 units. Construction is set to start in February. Prices start at less than $500,000, according to listing websites.

“Downtown Miami has become a real city with a lot of room to grow. Now when you say Brickell in South America, it is like saying Fifth Avenue,” PMG founder andprincipal Kevin Maloney told TRD.

Nearly all of Echo’s 180 units that have been placed on the market — Maloney is holding about eight penthouses for now — have been reserved; about half of those reservations have come for South American buyers.

About 20 percent have come from domestic buyers, he added.

Echo Brickell, though, will be built with both domestic and foreign families in mind, stressed Craig Studnicky, principal of ISG World, which is exclusively handling the tower’s sales and marketing.

“There are several thousand units being developed in Brickell, but Echo is … developed specifically for families,” Studnicky said.