TRD SoFla’s most-read web stories of 2013

Dec.December 18, 2013 02:15 PM

From left: Residences at EDITION penthouse rendering; 17100 block of Collins Avenue and the Versace Mansion

In the South Florida real estate news world, nothing moves the needle quite like condos.

From record-breaking penthouse sales to the region’s evolving development pipeline, The Real Deal‘s South Florida readers flocked to any story covering the region’s condo market. Five of the site’s 10 most-read stories this year dealt with some form of the condo sector.

The most read story of 2013 involved a condo developer picking up a prime oceanfront development site in Sunny Isles Beach, a hotbed of luxury condo construction. Property Markets Group paid $30 million for less than one acre at 17141 Collins Avenue in September. The New York-based company teamed up with S2 Development of Aventura for the acquisition and future development of the property.

In an example of the aggressive value appreciation for oceanfront land in South Florida, seller Palermo Beach netted a 50 percent return on the $20 million it invested to buy the property in March 2012.

While Peter Zalewski’s October column on rampant money laundering in South Florida’s condo market probably did not discourage future buyers, it shed light on how criminals can use condo purchases to hide their ill-gotten gains from law enforcement.

Other condo stories that generated substantial reader interest included the record-breaking $34 million penthouse sale at the Residences at the Miami Beach EDITION in March and an in-depth look at the South Florida preconstruction pipeline in July.

With more than 175 new condo towers totaling nearly 24,000 units proposed in the tri-county area of South Florida through November, interest in the region’s condo market is only going to intensify in 2014.

Beyond condos, TRD readers wanted to know about how thousands of Florida borrowers facing foreclosure could avoid losing their homes because of the backlog of pending cases, the bankruptcy auction of the former Versace Mansion in South Beach and the battle for major retail tenants in Miami’s Central Business District.

Here are the most-read web stories of 2013:

1. Property Markets Group pays $30M for oceanfront site
2. Thousands of borrowers could elude foreclosure
3. Dirty cash is fueling condo recovery: ex-prosecutor
4. Miami penthouse sells for $34M
5. Versace mansion brings $41.5M, will be converted to hotel
6. SoFla has 46 condo towers in the pipeline
7. Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s sign Worldcenter leases
8. “MDLNY” star Luis Ortiz is leaving Keller Williams
9. Versace manse could become another Apple store
10. Leveraged buyout king pays $15M for SoBe condo

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