The Real Deal Miami

Hospitality group owned by Yankees, Dallas Cowboys will help bankroll SkyRise Miami

Company owns and operates observatory in New York's One World Trade Center
June 27, 2016 03:00PM

Rendering of the SkyRise Miami tower

Rendering of the SkyRise Miami tower

It looks like Jeff Berkowitz will be getting some help bankrolling his $470 million SkyRise Miami development.

A hospitality group owned by a partnership between the New York Yankees and Dallas Cowboys announced Monday that it’s signed an investment and management agreement for Berkowitz’s project.

New Jersey-based Legends Hospitality Group said in the release that it will be responsible for “overall development and operation of the SkyRise experience.” That means the company will head up food and beverage operations, sales and marketing, all guest interactions and day-to-day management.

Besides its well-heeled owners, the company is also known as the owner and and operator of the One World Observatory at the top of New York’s One World Trade Center.

The announcement didn’t discuss terms of the investment agreement, but it did come with a new opening date: 2020. SkyRise was originally slated to open in 2018 when it was first going through the approval process.

Berkowitz’s planned 1,000-foot bayfront observation tower and entertainment venue has been mired in controversy, most notably because of its chief opponents: billionaire Norman Braman and county mayor candidate Raquel Regalado.

The two filed suit against both the developer and Miami-Dade County over a $9 million public funding agreement for SkyRise in 2014, and the fight reached a head this year when Berkowitz said he’d given up on pursuing any grants. A Florida Supreme Court ruling in September had put to rest other legal challenges from community activists seeking to stop the development. — Sean Stewart-Muniz