Back to Gencom: Brookfield sells its majority stake in Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne

Hotel investment firm plans $100M renovation of the waterfront resort it developed in the early 2000s

Brookfield Sells Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne Stake to Gencom
Gencom's Karim Alibhai and Brookfield’s Bruce Flatt and the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne (Google Maps, Brookfield, Gencom)

Brookfield Asset Management sold its majority stake in the Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne back to Gencom, which now has full ownership of the waterfront resort. 

Karim Alibhai’s Gencom, a Miami-based hotel investment firm, had previously owned about one-third of the property at 455 Grand Bay Drive in Key Biscayne. Gencom sold two-thirds of the resort to Carey Watermark Investors in 2015 for $325 million. Brookfield acquired that interest when it purchased Watermark Lodging Trust in 2022 for $3.8 billion. 

Gencom completed the 13-story Ritz-Carlton in 2001 on a 17-acre property with 1,200 feet of beachfront, pools, a tennis center and meeting space. The property also includes luxury condos that are branded Ritz-Carlton that were not included in the latest deal. 

Brookfield had sought to exit the property for months. It was working with JLL to market the 291-key, 275,000-square-foot hotel for sale. The high cost of financing and insurance has put a damper on major hotel trades, brokers and attorneys say. 

The sale back to Gencom was financed by Citigroup and KSL Capital Partners, according to a press release. Bloomberg reported the deal valued the hotel at more than $400 million. The sale has not yet been recorded and Gencom declined to disclose the price. 

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Gencom plans a $100 million renovation of the resort, Alibhai said in the release. That’s expected to begin next year. 

In 2023, Brookfield sold the Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood, one of the largest hotels in South Florida, to Trinity Investments and Credit Suisse for $835 million. Brookfield’s portfolio in South Florida includes the Shops at Merrick Park in Coral Gables, a stake in the Miami Design District, and the Mayfair House Hotel & Garden in Miami’s Coconut Grove. 

Gencom, based in Coconut Grove, has nearly $8 billion in assets under management with 7,000 hotel rooms in operation or planned, according to the release. Gencom, which also owns the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Coconut Grove, is moving forward with plans for a major redevelopment of the James L. Knight Center and an adjoining 615-room Hyatt hotel at 400 Southeast Second Avenue in downtown Miami. 

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