Alan and Robert Potamkin rev up their real estate game with $10M Miami Beach purchase near Lincoln Road

Auto dealership tycoons bought a commercial building and parking lot on Alton Road

Alan and Robert Potamkin and the property at 1695 Alton Road in Miami Beach (The Potamkin Prize, BHS)
Alan and Robert Potamkin and the property at 1695 Alton Road in Miami Beach (The Potamkin Prize, BHS)

Auto dealership magnates Alan Potamkin and Robert Potamkin bought a potential commercial redevelopment site in Miami Beach for $10.4 million.

An entity managed by the brothers bought a parking lot at 1683 Alton Road and, next to it, a single-story commercial building at 1695 Alton Road, near Lincoln Road, according to records. Alan Potamkin and Robert Potamkin are co-chairmen of Miami Lakes-based Potamkin Automotive Group, the owner of 24 car dealerships across the U.S.

The seller, Sanel, an entity managed by Eleonora Zocco of North Miami, paid $8.1 million for the two properties in 2012, records show. The sites total 15,000 square feet. The 4,940-square-foot building was completed in 1999 and renovated in 2012.

Rich Tallman with Habitare International Realty represented the seller, and Marc Chasin with Urban Central Realty Advisors represented the Potamkins.

Chasin referred questions about the buyers’ plans for the site to the Potamkins. The brothers did not return phone messages seeking comment.

The building was leased to a BankUnited branch until last year, when the bank opted not to renew its lease, Tallman said. The seller decided to put the properties on the market with an asking price of $10.7 million, he added.

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The properties are zoned for mixed-use development. To market the site, Tallman commissioned an architect to design conceptual renderings of what could be built. A brochure shows a four-story building with ground-floor retail, a second-floor garage, short-term rental units on the third and fourth floors and two restaurant spaces also on the fourth floor.

“It was a marketing technique thinking [the site] would be a development opportunity,” Tallman said. “Most of the calls I received were from local developers and local bigwigs.”

The seller liked the Potamkins’ offer the most, Tallman said. “We came to a meeting of the minds that was copacetic to everybody,” he said. “And [Alan and Robert Potamkin] are great to do business with.”

The building and parking lot are on the corner of 17th Street and Alton Road, a block from Lincoln Road. The properties are also about a block south of a development site on Alton Road where Miami Beach developer Ronny Finvarb had planned to build a 36-key boutique hotel. However, Miami Beach approved a zoning overlay district in the city’s Sunset Harbour neighborhood that prohibits development of new hotels.

The sites are also near a renovated office building on Meridian Avenue, off Lincoln Road, that was recently acquired for $26.5 million by Juan Jose Zaragoza with Miami-based real estate fund manager Exan Capital.