Private island to be developed as Privé

Luxe, twin glass condo towers are planned for the eight-acre site in Aventura

Aug.August 12, 2013 01:00 PM

BH3, a company founded in 2009 acquiring debt on “opportunistic” South Florida projects, has partnered with the scion of a prominent Aventura developer family to jointly develop a high-end, two-tower condo on a private island they are naming Privé, principals Daniel Lebensohn, Charlie Phelan and Greg Freedman told The Real Deal.

The Cohen family, credited with developing the land for what is now Williams Island during the 1960s, sold the eight-acre private island to an affiliate company of Gary Cohen and BH3 Management LLC called Privé Developers LLC. The now-vacant island connects by bridge to Cohen’s Mediterranean-style single-family home development, Island Estates, as well as Williams Island.

Privé Developers have submitted plans from the Miami-based architectural firm Sieger Suarez to build twin, 16-story glass towers with a raised, glass floor-to-ceiling lobby and the first residential floor perched 68 feet above sea level, offering views of the waterway and the ocean, according to renderings shared with TRD. The 160 apartments will range in price from $1.7 million to more than $6 million. The towers — as well as the island — are to be known as Privé.

“We believe that South Florida has a very bright future,” Lebensohn told TRD.

The company learned of the island through mutual acquaintances of Cohen after buying the debt on a handful of high-profile properties that stalled during the recession, including Trump Hollywood, Fontainebleau Sorrento and 1805 Ponce in Coral Gables. BH3 sold out all the units in Trump Hollywood in Hollywood Beach in 18 months, and subsequently bought the distressed debt on 1805 Ponce from Ocean Bank last December.

Pre-sales are set to open on the newly-christened island next month.

Correction: A previous version of this article misstated that Gary Cohen sold the island to BH3. The Cohen family sold it to a Gary Cohen affiliate company and BH3. It also misreported the height of the lobby. The first residential floor is 68 feet above sea level.

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