Abinger Capital files to foreclose on ex-Best Buy store in Pinecrest

New York-based lender alleges big box retail building’s owner defaulted on $11.5M debt

Abinger Capital Seeks Foreclosure of Pinecrest Big Box Store
11905 South Dixie Highway (Google Maps, Getty)

After Best Buy said “bye-bye” as a tenant, a retail landlord could lose his big box store in Pinecrest to foreclosure. 

An affiliate of Abinger Capital, a New York-based real estate investment management firm, is suing an entity managed by Azhar Said in Miami for allegedly defaulting on a $11.5 million mortgage. In the complaint filed this week, Abinger alleges Said’s Maria Investments failed to repay the loan when it matured in October of last year. 

That same month, Best Buy moved out of the two-story retail building at 11905 South Dixie Highway as part of the national retailer’s closing of 17 stores across the country, published reports state. 

Said did not respond to requests for comment. 

Built in 1988 on a 1-acre site, the 38,456-square-foot building is currently listed for sale with an asking price of $19 million, according to Vizzda. In 1999, Maria Investments bought the property for $2.8 million. 

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Maria Investments obtained a $14 million loan from TotalBank in 2013, Abinger’s complaint states. In 2019, a year after TotalBank was acquired by City National Bank of Florida, Maria Investments renewed the mortgage with an outstanding debt of $12.5 million, records show. In December, Abinger acquired the loan from City National Bank. 

Other recent foreclosure actions in South Florida involved a mostly renovated downtown Miami mixed-use property and a vacant office building in the Miami Design District. 

City National Bank had won a $31.2 million partial judgment last month against an entity managed by New York-based developer Yair Levy that allegedly defaulted on a construction loan for Time Century Jewelry Center, a nine-story office and retail building at 1 Northeast 1st Street in downtown Miami. But this month Miami-Dade Judge Gina Beovides canceled a foreclosure auction after Levy sold the site for $27.5 million to a joint venture between Avi Dishi, Elysee Investments and Pan Am Equities. The new owners also acquired the delinquent loan from City National Bank. 

In September, real estate investor Remy Jacobson lost a three-story building at 4141 North Miami Avenue in the Miami Design District to the commercial property’s lender, Centennial Bank. Over the summer, Centennial Bank had won a $10.4 million final foreclosure judgment stemming from a lawsuit alleging Jacobson and his partners defaulted on a 2016 loan. The financial institution paid $61,500 for the building at a foreclosure auction, records show.