The Real Deal Miami

Glaser sells Miami Beach office building to luxury watchmaker

John Simonian, president of Westime, bought the site for $5.25 million
By Keith Larsen | February 07, 2019 02:32PM

From left: Lyle Chariff, John Simonian, and Todd Glaser (Credit: Getty Images)

Todd Michael Glaser sold a four-story residential building in Miami Beach to a luxury watchmaker who is planning to convert the property to an office.

A company tied to the luxury spec home developer and his father-in-law, Mitchell Rubinson, sold the property at 2228 Park Avenue for $5.25 million, or $511.54 per square foot, to John Simonian, according to Lyle Chariff, president of Chariff Realty Group, which represented the seller.

Simonian is the president of Westime, a luxury wristwatch maker based in Los Angeles, with stores in La Jolla, Hollywood, and Miami.

The property at 2228 Park Avenue was built in 2006 and has been on and off the market since 2009. The four-story building is currently divided into two residential townhouse units. It was designed by architect Chad Oppenheim.

The buyer was represented by FIP Realty’s Roy Faith.

Chariff, who represented the seller along with Mauricio Zapata and Dan Blakeman, said the firm was able to sell the property within 60 days of securing the listing. Chariff said his group was able to sell the property quickly by marketing it as a commercial space rather than a residential opportunity.

The Los Angeles watchmaker became interested in the building after looking to buy a home in Miami Beach. He also wanted a small, non-traditional Class A office space since he planned to buy a home in the area, but had limited options in Miami Beach, according to Chariff.

Other potential buyers for the site were in similar situations, Chariff said. Many had migrated to Miami for tax reasons and wanted to establish small offices in the area, but sought to avoid the conventional luxury office towers in Brickell, Chariff said.

Increasingly, wealthy individuals from the Northeast are moving to Florida, where there is no state income tax. People living in high-taxed states are paying more in income taxes after President Trump’s 2017 tax plan limited state and local income tax deductions.

Glaser has built a number of spec homes in Miami Beach, including 5446 North Bay Road and 2821 Lucerne Avenue on Sunset Island I.