Archive for February, 2012

Mansions at Acqualina Sells Out Half the Property in its First Month of Sales

Posted by ricardo on 2/27/2012 | |


The developer of the successful Acqualina condo in Sunny Isles Beach has recently launched Acqualina’s sister project, The Mansions at Acqualina, to a resounding success. The Real Deal reported that in its first month on the market, the property reached the 51% sold mark – an incredible feat, given that prices start at $5 million.

Mansions at Acqualina will be set on 650 feet of oceanfront and will be connected to Acqualina by a private bridge. While residents will have access to its neighboring Acqualina Ocean Residences and Resort‘s five-star amenities, they will also have over 16,000 sq. ft. of their own amenity space.

The property, which has both Mediterranean and contemporary influences, will be comprised of 79 private oceanfront villa residences over 47 stories. The apartments at the Mansions at Acqualina are all quite large. For instance, the entry-level Villa D’Acqua half-floor unit is 4,557 sq. ft. of interior space and 854 sq. ft. of terraces (including Jacuzzi and outdoor summer kitchen). The full floor Palazzo Di Spiaggia is 7,875 sq. ft. interior space and 3,193 sq. ft. of terraces (including a sunset pool, Jacuzzi and outdoor summer kitchen). The Penthouse is listed at 16,000 sq. ft. and is reportedly priced around $40 million.

The building is being developed by the Trump Group (no affiliation with Donald Trump), which also developed the ultra-luxury condo Luxuria in Boca Raton. Construction is set to begin by the end of 2012.

For additional info and pictures, please click on the link below.

The Mansions at Acqualina

Sunny Isles Beach Luxury Real Estate For Sale

Super-Tall Ultra-Luxury Drake Tower to Rise at 432 Park Avenue

Posted by ricardo on 2/26/2012 | |


According to The Real Deal, the last remaining holdout in a battle with CIM Group over the construction of the new 432 Park Avenue withdrew their motion for an injunction this past week, freeing CIM Group, the super-tall tower’s developer, to accelerate construction of the reportedly 1,300-foot tall mixed-use building – the tallest residential building in all of New York City.

According to an October 19, 2011 Wall Street Journal article, building plans “show a 1,300-foot tall, slender condo and retail complex designed by Rafael Vinoly” that would be comprised of “128 condos with more than 12-foot high ceilings; a 5,000 square foot, partially covered, driveway to ensure privacy; and amenities like golf training facilities and private dining and screening rooms.” The bottom floors of the building are likely to have a hotel component as well.

On December 8, 2011, reported “the building will feature its entrance on 57th street right across the street from the Four Seasons. Expected time to be completed [is] 2015-2016. The building will feature prime views of Central Park and will over-tower the Four Season[s] by almost three times its size. Rumor [i]s that each unit will be sold for $6,000 a square foot.” If this rumor proves true, prices would be about the same as One 57, which is now averaging around $6,000 per square foot.

While anyone walking by the site can tell that construction has commenced over the last few months, we don’t expect at this time that a 100+ story building could be delivered before 2016. According to the Wall Street Journal, there is no scheduled completion date and, as of January 3, 2012, the building had not yet lined up the hefty $700 million construction loan needed to build this super-tall tower. While the project will likely find financing as the economy continues to improve, according to the Wall Street Journal, “[e]ven with financing, CIM’s tower of Park Avenue trails a competing 1,000-foot residential project on West 57th street [One 57] from Extell Development Co. That skyscraper is nearly 30 stories above ground and counts an Abu Dhabi fund as a partner.”

The Drake Hotel, built in 1926, once stood at the site of the new Drake Tower, but was demolished in 2007, the same year developer Harry Macklowe defaulted on the loan. CIM Group, a California-based private equity firm, purchased the site at a seemingly bargain price of $305 million, when only a few years earlier it was sold to Macklowe for $460 million.

Once the building obtains financing, we expect 432 Park Avenue will perform quite well, as demand for ultra-luxury condos in Manhattan has been very strong over the past year. In fact, 2011 saw record prices at 15 CPW and 25 Columbus Circle. As the US economy continues to improve, we expect that the 128 condos won’t have too hard a time finding buyers. The building’s super-prime location and superb views, combined with the healthy appetite of foreign buyers of trophy New York Luxury Properties make the Drake Tower (or 432 Park Avenue) a likely success.


432 Park Avenue Update May 31, 2012

According to a recent WSJ article, pricing is expected to be around $4,500 per square foot, which is 20-25% less than One57, a lot lower than the rumored $6,000 psf.  The article also indicates that the building will house 128 units from 1,390 to 8,000 square feet. CIM, the developer, expects to sell 40 units pre-sale with closings expected in October 2014 and completion by the second quarter of 2015.

432 Park Avenue Update September 6, 2012

We were recently gifted with a long awaited preview of 432 Park Avenue.  By all accounts, this project is destined to be extraordinary.  Slated for completion in 2015, this will be the tallest residential building in Manhattan at close to 1,400 feet (far surpassing One 57 by almost 400 feet). While the showroom won’t be ready until later this year (most likely in November), we now have the inside scoop on prices, sizes, heights, and amenities.   Let’s us know if you would like more information about New York City’s new record setting, ultra-tall trophy building.

Luxury Retail on The Move To The Miami Miami Design District

Posted by ricardo on 2/25/2012 | |


High-End Fashion Brands on the Move to the Miami Design District

Miami will be soon getting its own version of SoHo and The Meat Packing District with the reinvention of the Miami Design District. Home to many contemporary furniture showrooms, antiques dealers, art galleries and retail spaces, the Miami Design District is poised to become a preeminent high-end fashion destination, with the announcement of more than two dozen high-fashion houses on the way, including names like Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Bulgari, Cartier, Hermès, Tom Ford, Pucci, De Beers, Celine, Marc by Marc Jacobs and Ermenegildo Zegna, and Burberry, to name a few.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Design District plans call for a “three-block-long pedestrian strip anchored on either end by a plaza.” The project also calls for a boutique hotel, residential units, public art installations, and rooftop gardens. While the project will likely be completed in 2014, some retailers are now opening temporary spaces. When the project is completed, it is expected to include more than 40 or 50 luxury retail brands.

Many of these brands are moving to the Miami Design District from Bal Harbour Shops, located 10 miles north. The Design District’s central location, however, is better positioned to serve residents and visitors in South Beach and Downtown Miami. These locations have always been under-retailed, especially in the luxury sector. Accordingly, these moves are likely to prove very successful, considering that many rich tourists from South America, the US and Europe never even travel as far north as Bal Harbour.

Residents of Apogee, Continuum, Setai, W South Beach Residences, Murano at Portofino, and Icon, some of the most expensive Miami Beach Luxury Properties, are only minutes away from the Miami Design District.

The orchestration of these moves comes at the right time, given the recent reinvention of Downtown Miami. No doubt, there will be lots of demand coming from residents of Epic, Icon Brickell, 900 Biscayne, Marquis and Paramount Bay, some of the most expensive Miami Luxury Real Estate in downtown.

To read more about this, click on the links to the Wall Street Journal and Miami Herald articles.

Photography Source: Wikipedia, digital photo taken by Marc Averette


Manhattan Real Estate Market Update

Posted by ricardo on 2/10/2012 | |


The Manhattan Real Estate Market fourth quarter 2011 performance can be characterized by 1) across the board price increases, 2) declining activity and 3) declining inventory.

Condos and luxury properties prices increased 8.1% and 3.1% respectively over the same prior-year quarter.  New development prices increased by 18.8%, although this is somewhat attributed to a large number of closings in the quarter at several high-end new developments like the Laureate and Aldyn.

Sales activity for New York condos, luxury properties, and new developments, however, has declined significantly.  This, however, is likely attributable to the surge in activity in the prior quarter and lower available inventory in the current quarter. Accordingly, lower sales activity is not expected to be a future trend.

To find out more about the Manhattan Market in the fourth quarter, see the Manhattan Market Report.