Banyan Investment buys Gale Fort Lauderdale hotel from Harvey Hernandez

Recently completed hotel has not yet opened

The Gale Hotel with Harvey Hernandez
The Gale Hotel with Harvey Hernandez

Developer Harvey Hernandez sold the completed — but as yet unopened — Gale Hotel in Fort Lauderdale for nearly $23 million.

Property records show Hernandez’s Tiffany Hotel LP sold the 96-key hotel at 2900 Riomar Street on Fort Lauderdale Beach to Atlanta-based Banyan Investment Group. The boutique hotel traded for about $250,000 per room.

Paul Weimer

CBRE’s Christian Charre, Paul Weimer, Jennifer Jin and Andrew Pastorino, who could not be reached for comment, were listing the property.

The deal marks one of a few hotels to sell since the pandemic began, though developers are moving forward with plans for new projects.

Menin Hospitality principal Keith Menin said he is in talks with the new Gale Hotel owner to stay on as the operator. The 62,000-square-foot building includes a full-service lobby restaurant, a 400-square-foot meeting space, fitness center, and nearly 250 parking spaces that are shared with the Gale Residences. Menin has the Gale Hotel in South Beach, in addition to other hospitality concepts in South Florida.

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Christian Charre

Christian Charre

Records show Banyan Investment Group, a hotel investment and management group, financed the purchase with a $17.3 million mortgage from iBorrow, a real estate investment trust that provides short-term bridge financing.

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Hernandez’s Newgard Development Group completed the Gale Residences, a 129-unit project at 401 Bayshore Drive in Fort Lauderdale, in 2018. He partnered with Dev Motwani’s Merrimac Ventures on the development. Newgard financed construction of the hotel component with a $19 million loan. Owners of the condos can put their units into the hotel management program.

In September, Hernandez’s co-founder and minority partner at NGD Homesharing sued Hernandez and the company, alleging that it is headed to insolvency and needs a court-appointed receiver. NGD is one of the businesses Hernandez uses for development work, along with Newgard Realty and Newgard Development Group.