Crunch Fitness founder beefs up retail portfolio with $18M purchase in Little Haiti

Douglas Levine bought a strip mall with tenants including La Santa Taqueria, and an adjacent building

Crunch Fitness and Big Move Properties' Douglas Levine with 8200 Northeast Second Avenue and 201 Northeast 82nd Street
Crunch Fitness and Big Move Properties' Douglas Levine with 8200 Northeast Second Avenue and 201 Northeast 82nd Street (Google Maps, Lead Edge Capital)

UPDATED. July 29, 5:35 p.m.: Douglas Levine, founder of Crunch Fitness, is pumping up his retail real estate holdings with a two-building, $17.8 million purchase in Miami’s Little Haiti.

An entity managed by Levine, a real estate investor who also founded Miami-based Big Move Properties, bought a 23,142-square-foot strip mall at 8200 Northeast Second Avenue for $11.8 million, and an adjacent 9,608-square-foot retail building at 201 Northeast 82nd Street for $5.6 million, records show.

The seller, an entity managed by Miami-based real estate investor Thomas Conway, bought both properties for $6.2 million in 2018, records show. The strip mall was completed in 1947 and the smaller building was finished in 1987.

Alfredo Riascos with Gridline Properties represented the buyer and the seller, according to a Gridline spokesperson.

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Both buildings are subdivided into storefronts featuring small retailers and small restaurants, according to online listings. Tenants include Primal Fit, Eyebrow King, Metro PCS, La Santa Taqueria, Salon Dahlia, Tran An Vietnamese Eatery and Lucio Wine Shop.

When Conway acquired the buildings four years ago, he evicted neighborhood businesses that had been in Little Haiti for 30 years, including a tuxedo shop, clothing store, tax and immigration services and restaurants, according to the Miami Herald.

Conway still owns a 2.2-acre redevelopment site at 8038 Northeast Second Avenue and 165 Northeast 80th Terrace where he is seeking city approval to increase the density from 65 units per acre to 150 units per acre. Conway wants to build a mixed-income apartment project on the property, which he bought as part of a $25 million purchase of eight commercial buildings from defunct Bellsouth Communications in 2020.

In March, Levine branched out of Miami’s Allapattah, Little River and Wynwood neighborhoods, where most of his portfolio is concentrated. He paid $15 million for a fully leased Fort Lauderdale office building.

In Wynwood and Allapattah, Levine is converting several industrial properties into offices and retail buildings, including the Atrium @Trackside at 51-53 Northeast 24th Street and the Allapattah Marketplace at 728 Northwest 29th Street.