Ex-Vornado CEO Fascitelli and partner score loan for South Beach hotel

Roughly 300-key hotel now has about $90M in financing

Rendering of the Washington Avenue hotel and Michael Fascitelli
Rendering of the Washington Avenue hotel and Michael Fascitelli

New York-based Imperial Companies has secured $45 million in construction financing for a hotel in South Beach.

Records show Washington Squared Owner LLC closed on the loan from Bank of the Ozarks, bringing the company’s total financing for the property to nearly $90 million.

Imperial’s Michael Fascitelli and Eric Birnbaum are building the roughly 300-key hotel at 601 to 685 Washington Avenue. Fascitelli was CEO of Vornado Realty Trust until his resignation in 2013 and is a member of Vornado’s board of trustees. Birnbaum also worked at Vornado, spending about six years at the company in the acquisitions and capital markets group as well as the in-house development team.

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As proposed, the seven-story building would include ground-floor retail and a third-floor amenity deck with a pool, private cabanas, club bar, outdoor and indoor cafe, and a concierge desk. The Z-shaped hotel is being designed by Morris Adjmi Architects and Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe & Associates with interiors by Ken Fulk. Imperial will self-brand the property, Birnbaum said. It will be completed in about two years.

The LLC paid $36 million for the Washington Avenue block in 2015. Birnbaum said Imperial is the developer and Turnbridge Equities, part of the buying entity, now owns a small portion of the site.

The hotel would be one of the first new large-scale projects on Washington Avenue. In 2015, Miami Beach commissioners approved an ordinance designed to bring hotels, fine dining and new retail to the street. David Lichtenstein’s Lightstone Group is planning Moxy South Beach, a seven-story, 202-room boutique hotel to replace aging storefronts at 915-947 Washington Avenue.