The Real Deal Miami

Trump Group just scored a $558M construction loan for The Estates at Acqualina in Sunny Isles

Loan is the largest condo construction loan in Miami this cycle
By Keith Larsen | October 03, 2018 11:00AM

Rendering of the Estates at Acqualina, Jules Trump (Credit: The Closing)

UPDATED October 3, 1:06 p.m.: The developers of The Estates at Acqualina in Sunny Isles Beach just scored a $558 million construction loan from Bank OZK, marking the largest condo construction loan in Miami-Dade County this cycle.

The loan will allow the affiliates of Trump Group, led by Jules, Eddie and Stephanie Trump (who are of no relation to President Trump) to fund the completion of the two 50-story towers at 17901 Collins Avenue. The loan will allow construction of the north tower, which had been on hold, to move forward, Jules Trump said.

Trump Group secured the loan from the Arkansas bank formerly known as Bank of the Ozarks, which is one of South Florida’s most active construction lenders. The $558 million loan includes a $71 million mortgage the developers received last year from Bank OZK.

The project opened its sales gallery in 2016 and the project broke ground in May and the first tower is now 65 percent pre-sold, according to the developer. Residences at The Estates at Acqualina are priced from $4.2 million to $14 million with penthouses priced up to $35 million. Condos at the 245-unit luxury development range from 2,917 square feet to 9,000 square feet, and from three to seven bedrooms.

The project will be open to residents in late 2020, according to a press release.

“Since launching The Estates at Acqualina, our clients have demonstrated excitement about this project resulting in strong pre-sales, and now their confidence is being matched by the banking community,” said developer Jules Trump in a statement.

He said sales are overwhelmingly from domestic residents from the Northeast, a contrast from previous projects where the development group has seen more foreign buyers.

The development’s common areas will be created by fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld. In addition, The Estates at Acqualina will have three single-family homes and three, two-story penthouses that will all have private pools.

The Estates at Acqualina will also include 50,000 square-feet of amenities including a spa and fitness center, an ice-skating rink, bowling lanes, a movie theater, golfing and Formula One simulators, children’s playroom, and a speakeasy. A restaurant plans to be announced later this year.

Bilzin Sumberg’s Alexandra Lehson and Jim Shindell represented Trump Group in the transaction. Gary Saul and Meredith Singer of Greenberg Traurig served as condominium counsel.

Banks and traditional lenders have been reluctant to make large construction loans in Miami over the past few years. Bank OZK is one of the few exceptions. The regional bank provided more than $1.2 billion in construction loans in the Miami metropolitan area from 2013 through 2017, according to the company’s annual reports. In Miami-Dade alone, the bank was the largest condo construction lender for the county’s biggest projects.

Correction: A previous version of the story incorrectly stated that the new construction loan does not include an existing $71 million loan. It does.