Aria Development Group completed YotelPad Miami, the first new flexible, short-term rental-friendly condo and hotel project in downtown Miami.
Aria, led by principal David Arditi, partnered with the Kuwaiti firm AQARAT to develop the 31-story building at 227 Northeast Second Street. The project has been in the works since at least 2014, and its latest version was expected to be completed in 2020.
Arditi said construction was delayed by the pandemic and the logistical challenges that came with it. “A lot of life happened in the last several years,” he said, pointing more recently to challenges with getting materials.
The pandemic hit a year or so into construction, which began in 2019, Arditi added.
The project’s 231 condos are sold out, and sales of 131 units have been recorded so far for nearly $45 million. Closings began in March and are expected to be completed in mid-June, Arditi said. Prices started at $250,000.
In addition to the condos, YotelPad Miami includes 222 hotel rooms, which Yotel calls cabins.
YotelPad Miami marks the first Yotel-branded development in the city. After launching sales in early 2018, it sold out within a year and a half. Since then, a number of developers have launched and sold out similar projects in Greater Downtown Miami that also allow units to be rented out on a short-term basis.
Aria Development is also nearly sold out at 501 First, a similar development at 501 Northeast First Avenue in Miami, which launched condo sales last year and offers short-term rental friendly units, Arditi said.
Buyers of YotelPad’s residential “pads,” or condos, have no restrictions, and they can participate in the hotel’s short-term rental program. OneWorld Properties, led by Peggy Olin, handled sales and marketing. Buyers hailed from China, Mexico, South America and elsewhere, Arditi said.
“I can use it 365 days a year if I so choose. I can also rent it out 365 times a year if I so choose, and everything in between,” Arditi said. “The concept of the maximum flexibility is what’s appealing.”
The condos are on floors 15 to 30, and they range from 425-square-foot studios to 700-square-foot two-bedroom units with living, kitchen and dining areas. Residents and guests can access three robot butlers via an app that can deliver food, drinks, gifts and documents.
Amenities include bike storage, a coffee bar, a co-working space, pool deck, fitness center and a pet salon, according to a release. The building also has a lounge on the top floor with a game area, chef’s kitchen and private dining space. GPG Hospitality will operate the food and beverage, including restaurants Mazeh on the ground floor and Float at the pool deck on the 14th floor.
The developer paid $5.5 million for the corner development site in 2013, and financed construction with a $76.3 million loan from Bank OZK. Aria is in the process of paying back the construction loan, Arditi said.
AQARAT, in addition to Starwood Capital Group, United Investments Portugal and the Talal Jassim Al-Bahar Family Office, are shareholders of Yotel. The micro-hotel brand has 15 Yotels around the world, five YotelAir (airport hotels) and two YotelPads, including Miami, according to its website.
Arditi said he hopes to build another Yotel development in South Florida, but has not found a site yet.
“We’re absolutely open to more projects,” he said.