Tom Barrack’s Middle Eastern connections run deep, luxury car dealer Prestige Imports plans an auto spa: Daily digest

A daily round up of South Florida real estate news, deals and more for August 6, 2019

Aug.August 06, 2019 04:00 PM

Every day, The Real Deal rounds up South Florida’s biggest real estate news, from breaking news and scoops to announcements and deals. We update this page at 9 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 4 p.m. ET. Please send any tips or deals to [email protected]

This page was last updated at 4 p.m.


Prior to President Donald Trump placing an economic embargo on Venezuela, Trump’s business was selling condos to supporters and associates of the country’s leader Nicolás Maduro. More than six Venezuelans tied to either Maduro or his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, purchased Trump condos in New York City and South Florida before Trump became president, according to Politico. Several of the Venezuelans faced serious allegations of financial fraud in Venezuela. [TRD]


Luxury car dealer Prestige Imports is adding another facility to its over 10-acre North Miami Beach campus: Prestige Auto Spa, a car wash, gas station, restaurant and retail project. The 17,000-square-foot auto spa, at 15180 Biscayne Boulevard, is set to open by the fall, CEO Brett David told The Real Deal. Juice & Java, a health food concept based in Miami Beach, will open in a 3,100-square-foot space. Another retail concept is also expected to open there. [TRD]


Play “six degrees of separation” with Middle Eastern investors active in the U.S. real estate market, and chances are Tom Barrack’s name would pop up. The founder of Colony Capital is under scrutiny for his ties to the wealthy Middle Eastern nations of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Federal prosecutors are looking at whether Barrack, whose firm took in $1.5 billion from those two countries since his close friend Donald Trump won the Republican presidential nomination, sought to sway the Trump campaign and later the administration when it came to foreign-policy decisions. [TRD]


Another brokerage was sued for allegedly spamming real estate agents via text message. La Rosa Realty, a Celebration-based brokerage with four offices in South Florida, was sued in Miami federal court. The suit follows separate lawsuits filed earlier this year against Coldwell Banker and Naples-based Marzucco Real Estate alleging similar instances of unsolicited spamming via text messaging that run afoul of federal consumer protection laws. [TRD]


Barneys files for bankruptcy. Less than a day after reports that the department store chain was in talks for a bankruptcy loan, Barneys has secured $75 million in financing from Gordon Brothers and Hilco Global and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy as it plans for a formal sales process. The chain plans to close 15 of its 22 locations, but the Madison Avenue flagship — which accounts for one-third of the company’s revenue and has recently seen its annual rent nearly double — will remain open. [NYT]


Lennar acquires more land in South Dade. The country’s biggest homebuilder paid roughly $22 million for 79 acres in Homestead, west of Southwest 152nd Avenue. A trust tied to Keys Gate Realty sold the assemblage for nearly $280,000 per acre. [TRD]


The most-expensive condo sale in Miami-Dade last week was the $3.55 million closing of a unit at Il Villaggio in Miami Beach. Weekly condo sales volume totaled $62 million, about $20 million more than the previous week. [TRD]


Puerto Rico’s hotels and condos hit by political turmoil. The island’s lodging and luxury housing markets, still recovering from the fallout of Hurricane Maria, the Zika virus and a debt crisis, took another blow last week when Gov. Ricardo Rosselló resigned amid protests and scandal. Blackstone, which bet bit on the island’s promise in 2005, recently sold one hotel to a local builder and is looking to sell another. [WSJ] 


Investment bankers angle for lead role in WeWork IPO. With a relationship cultivated over many years and many deals, JPMorgan is expected to take first position in The We Company’s IPO syndicate, but rivals Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are close behind. JPMorgan has been the company’s — and CEO Adam Neumann’s — biggest lender, and is helping arrange an unconventional a $6 billion debt package that depends on the IPO raising at least $3 billion. [Bloomberg]


Inter Miami CF partner Jorge Mas plans to have the Miami Freedom Park stadium completed by 2022. The David Beckham-led group expects to spend its first two years at Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale, beginning in March 2020, and then move to Miami. Beckham has gone through multiple locations in Miami since he first started scouting properties years ago, but appears to be moving forward with the Melreese property near Miami International Airport. [Sun Sentinel]


Pebb Capital will acquire the Midtown Delray Beach mixed-use development site after all. Boca Raton-based Pebb will pay $40 million for the 7-acre property, in an Opportunity Zone, now that a legal fight between the project’s original owners has ended. The firm could break ground on Midtown Delray Beach by the second quarter of 2020. [TRD]


The owners of a V’s Barbershop franchise, linked to the family that owned the historic Yankee Clipper hotel, sold their waterfront Fort Lauderdale estate for $9.5 million.
Jenna and Keith Keltner sold the 6,055-square-foot home at 1749 Southeast 13th Street for $1,568 per square foot to a hidden buyer, a Nevada company called Grace 1749. [TRD]


Compass wants laid-off Uber employees to join their company. Just one day after Uber laid off a third of its marketing team, Compass’ chief creative officer Matt Spangler tweeted that they should come check out the open roles at Compass. The brokerage firm just announced a $370 million funding round on July 30 and in the midst of tripling its product-and-engineering team. [TRD]



Argentic Real Estate Investment LLC provided a $27 million loan to GV-IP 110 Tower Owner LLC for the 110 Tower, at 110 Southeast Sixth Street in Fort Lauderdale.


Compiled by Katherine Kallergis

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