Melo nabs $248M refi for downtown Miami apartment towers

Pair of 52-story towers are next to College North Metromover stop

From left: Carlos Melo, Jose Luis Ferreira de Melo and Martin Melo of Melo Group (Melo Group, iStock)
From left: Carlos Melo, Jose Luis Ferreira de Melo and Martin Melo of Melo Group (Melo Group, iStock)

The Melo Group scored a $247.5 million refinancing for its Downtown 5th apartment towers, the developer’s first multifamily project in Miami’s Central Business District.

Melo, owned and led by Jose Luis Ferreira de Melo and his sons, Carlos and Martin Melo, completed the pair of 52-story towers with 1,042 units in August. The buildings are on the corner of Fifth Street and North Miami Avenue, near the College North Metromover stop.

(Source: Melo Group)

Melo obtained the 10-year loan with a fixed interest rate of just over 3 percent from Freddie Mac, according to Peter Mekras of Aztec Group, who arranged the deal on behalf of the borrower. Berkadia’s Miami office is the servicer for Freddie Mac, Mekras said.

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The Melos, who hail from Argentina and moved their business to Miami after seeing the city’s potential during a 2001 visit, have completed more than 6,000 condos and apartments in and near the city, according to a release issued in August.

Most recently, the family put a full city block in Miami’s Arts & Entertainment District under contract for $105 million, to eventually develop residential high-rises with retail.

Melo already has completed several rental towers in Miami’s Arts & Entertainment District, including Miami Plaza, Melody Tower, Square Station and Art Plaza.

Melo’s more recent push into downtown Miami includes plans for a second multifamily high-rise, the 57-story Downtown 1st. The developer scored a $75 million construction loan for the project in November.

In Miami’s Edgewater neighborhood, Melo built the 648-unit Aria on the Bay condos, and now is working on Aria Reserve, a roughly 800-unit, two-tower condo development.

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