UPDATED, Sept. 28, 4:24 p.m.: A bulk sale of an aging condo building in Miami’s Edgewater neighborhood is moving ahead: A California firm that has been trying to acquire nearly all of the 254 units has secured about half.
And a second bidder that had previously promised unit owners at Bay Park that it would be working with Fort Partners, the developer of the Four Seasons properties in South Florida, has acknowledged a change of plans, sources told The Real Deal, as it also secures contracts with sellers.
The saga has pitted longtime neighbors against each other in a process that is already typically complicated and lengthy. At the same time, unit owners are facing more than $10 million in concrete restoration work and repairs needed to the 13-story condo building at 3301 Northeast Fifth Avenue, up to code.
The tragic collapse of Champlain Towers South in Surfside this summer has put older buildings under the microscope. Many unit owners and associations, up against millions of dollars in needed repairs, now may be more amenable to a bulk buyout offer. And developers, with little to no inventory of available waterfront land, will pay above market value for these properties, experts say.
Los Angeles, California-based Bomel Companies and Miami-based Aman Group each want to purchase Bay Park, and both are now offering $150 million. That breaks down to nearly $600,000 per unit, though the per-unit price will vary depending on each unit owner’s share of the building.
Bay Park was built in 1961.
The $150 million price is based on the value of the land. The site is zoned T6-36A-L, which allows for at least a 36-story building and 150 units per acre.
Bomel, which is not related to Bomel Construction, has secured signed contracts with 129 unit owners, and expects to fully execute an additional 15 contracts in the next 10 days, according to Benjamin Stein, associate with Bomel’s Florida Acquisitions group. Bomel’s goal is to sign contracts with 95 percent of the building, plus one, which would be about 242 units, so that it can terminate the condo and redevelop the property.
Bomel would pay 30 percent in cash and finance the rest with a mortgage. The company has built projects in California, Hawaii, New York, Miami and Israel, according to an offer letter obtained by TRD.
Aman is led by Vivian Dimond, a broker and investor who previously pitched her relationship with Fort Partners, a Four Seasons developer, to attract unit owners to sign contracts. Aman is not affiliated with Aman Resorts, an ultra high-end hospitality group.
Dimond’s offer at Bay Park includes a contingency for the first 50 sellers that executed agreements by mid-September. The offer also sets a closing date on or before the end of 2021.
Aman has secured contracts with more than 40 unit owners on track for a December closing, according to a copy of a letter sent to the building and obtained by TRD. The firm is also moving forward with contracts that are only contingent on securing 95 percent plus one, according to Jeff Cohen of Brown Harris Stevens.
Brown Harris Stevens is representing Dimond, while Douglas Elliman is working with Bomel.
Dimond said she has the financing in place to acquire the entire building, but declined to provide specifics. Dimond wrote that she is not “trying to block anyone” and intends to purchase the entire building.
In an email dated Sept. 15, Dimond wrote: “Further, and by way of this email, we are pleased to announce FORT PARTNERS LLC (owners of the FOUR SEASONS) as our development partner on this deal.”
Bill Thompson, a representative for Fort Partners, told TRD that Fort Partners and Fort Seasons are not involved. Fort Partners was expected to speak at an owners’ meeting more than a week ago, but did not show.
Dimond said that she has other partners she can work with. Dimond recently represented Dubai developer Damac Properties, the stalking horse bidder looking to buy the site of the tragic condo collapse in Surfside, in that deal.
All sales at Bay Park are subject to approval by the Bay Park condo association. Dimond’s offer to the first 50 sellers is contingent on the sellers obtaining waivers of the right of first refusal the association may have. Bomel’s offer is non-contingent, as long as it signs contracts with 95 percent, plus one, of the unit owners.
The association and property management company did not respond to requests for comment.
Carlos Rosso, a former executive at the Related Group who owns units in the building, urged owners to move quickly.
“We are like 90 contracts away from having not to spend $10 million on the concrete restoration. Do we want to [spend] that money and stay in an old building, or do we sell?” Rosso asked. “We’ve seen what happened at Champlain towers and we don’t want to see the same thing happen [here].”