Developers score $76M construction loan for Airbnb-branded condos in downtown Miami

Planned 37-story, 343-unit project has been fully presold for months

Ricardo Vadia, Jon Paul Perez, and Oscar Rodriguez with District 225
From left: Ricardo Vadia, Jon Paul Perez, and Oscar Rodriguez with District 225

The developers of District 225, an Airbnb-branded condo project planned for downtown Miami, secured construction financing.

Related Group, ROVR Development and BH Group received a $76 million loan from Madison Realty Capital, a New York-based lender, for the 37-story, 343-unit condo building at 225 North Miami Avenue. District 225 has been fully presold for months, and construction is underway, said ROVR’s Oscar Rodriguez.

Units ranged in price from the $300,000s to the $800,000s and from studios to two-bedrooms. About half of the buyers are from Colombia, Mexico and Argentina.

The units will be delivered fully furnished and finished, so buyers can rent them out easily, and Atlantic & Pacific will manage the short-term rentals, which will be listed on Airbnb. Amenities will include indoor racquetball and basketball courts, a rock climbing wall and rooftop pool deck.

Demand has remained strong for condos with short-term rental flexibility, prompting a number of developers to enter the market with new projects. PMG and Greybrook plan to launch sales soon of a newly completed short-term rental friendly building in downtown Miami that was expected to be delivered as rentals, but will be sold as condos.

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District 225 is expected to be completed in 2024, Rodriguez said.

Coral Gables-based ROVR’s principals, who both previously worked for Miami-based Related, identified the assemblage and brought it to Related, according to Rodriguez. The site is east of ROVR’s Grand Station Apartments, which it developed in partnership with the Miami Parking Authority. (Retired Yankees shortstop Alex Rodriguez is an investor in the project). Related and ROVR are also the successful bidders of the College Station site, which they will also develop with the Miami Parking Authority.

Rodriguez said ROVR is looking to do more short-term rental friendly condo projects in “urban settings” where he expects developments to be successful.

Related is also partnering with Merrimac Ventures to co-develop a short-term rental-friendly condo tower, called The Crosby, within the nearby Miami Worldcenter.

Arguably the most high-profile such development to move forward this cycle is the two-tower E11even Hotel & Residences, which E11even Partners and PMG are building. Units at the first 65-story building sold out within months, and sales are also strong for the second tower. A Starwood Property Trust affiliate provided a $148.5 million construction loan to the developers earlier this year.