Category Archives: News

Financial tech exec scoops up condo at Surfside’s Fendi Château

Monday, January 15, 2018

Unit 706 at Fendi Château Residences and Jeffrey S. Sloan (Credit: and Global Payments Inc.)

Financial technology executive Jeffrey S. Sloan and his wife Victoria just dropped $8 million for a condo at Fendi Château Residences in Surfside, property records show.

Jeffrey Sloan is CEO of the publicly traded financial technology company Global Payments, and is also chairman and president of the Electronic Transactions Association. He earned $8.2 million in fiscal 2016, according to Global Payments’ 2017 proxy filed in March with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Sloans new three-bedroom, 4,660-square-foot condo traded hands for about $1,710 per square foot. New York attorney Christian Curtis signed on behalf of the seller, Nassau, Bahamas-based Chateau Ocean Unit 706 LLC, managed by Kim Thompson and Dillian R. Dean. Records show the company paid $6.9 million, or about $1,400 per square foot, for the unit in 2016.

Shortly after buying the condo, the Bahamian financial executives listed it for $9.58 million, or nearly $2,000 a foot. The latest trade reflects a 16 percent discount off its original asking price.

The Château Group completed the 12-story, 58-unit building at 9365 Collins Avenue in September 2016. The beachfront development was designed by Arquitectonica and includes pools, a Jacuzzi, 12 private cabanas, a restaurant and bar, a fitness center and a spa, kids’ club, private theater, private dining room, wine cellar and Shabbat elevators.

Source: The Real Deal

Delray firm clears site in downtown Stuart for apartment development

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Crush Wine Bar is one of several businesses in downtown Stuart that closed to make way for the Azul Apartments development. (Credit: | Xavier Mascareñas )

A real estate development firm based in Delray Beach is preparing to break ground for construction of an apartment building in downtown Stuart.

Delray-based New Urban Communities has nearly completed demolition work on a 1.4-acre site in downtown Stuart known as the Triangle Property.

New Urban is clearing the site for a rental property development called Azul Apartments, a three-story, 49-unit building that the company expects to complete in 2020.

Led by principal Keith Rickard, New Urban is redeveloping the city-owned site under a 99-year lease agreement with the city of Stuart. The city bought the Triangle Property in 2013 for $1.5 million as part of an effort to revitalize the downtown area.

The planned apartment building is designed with 38 with two bedrooms, seven with one bedroom and four with three bedrooms.

The 1.4-acre development site in downtown Stuart is bounded by Dixie Highway, Joan Jefferson Way and Southwest Albany Avenue. [] — Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal

Jacksonville Beach may get a Margaritaville resort

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Jacksonville Beach (Source: Zillow)

A resort hotel bearing the Margaritaville brand may be coming to Jacksonville Beach. The city’s planning and development department is reviewing the proposed eight-story, 211-room hotel.

The Margaritaville hotel would have an internal parking garage and a ground-floor restaurant and would connect with an oceanfront boardwalk.

An Ormond Beach-based developer, Manoj Bhoola of MSB Hotels IVV, LLC, wants to build the hotel on a vacant lot along the ocean between 6th Avenue North and 7th Avenue North in Jacksonville Beach. No timetable for construction has been announced.

City planning director Bill Mann said the proposed Margaritaville resort would be “a great addition to our downtown area,” according WJXT-Channel 4 in Jacksonville.

Mann also said the developer would need a building permit from the city and a coastal construction permit from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. [] — Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal

Value Store It buys Pompano Beach self-storage facility

Friday, January 12, 2018


2250 North Powerline Road and Value Store It Management’s Carlos Diaz (Credit: Extra Secure Self Storage and LinkedIn)

Value Store It just paid $10 million to acquire a self-storage facility in Pompano Beach, property records show.

GT Development LLC, led by Thomas P. Richerson, sold the 110,690-square-foot facility at 2250 North Powerline Road for about $90 per square foot. The company paid $1.6 million for the property in 2006 and completed the building in 2010, records show.

Value Store It Powerline LLC of Fort Lauderdale bought the warehouse. Value Store It, owned by Todd Ruderman, has properties in Florida and Massachusetts, according to its website.

The Pompano Beach facility has 680 climate-controlled storage units.

Over the past year, self-storage real estate has caught the attention of investors and prominent storage operators. In November, Prudential paid $18.5 million for a new 101,000-square-foot self storage building in Little Havana.

CubeSmart, a Pennsylvania-based self-storage real estate investment trust, also recently bought properties in Delray Beach, Oakland Park and will manage a facility being built near Coral Gables.

Source: The Real Deal

Rosie O’Donnell sells West Palm home to Wayne Huizenga Jr.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

(Credit: and Wikipedia)

Comedian, actress and activist Rosie O’Donnell just sold her West Palm Beach home for $5 million to billionaire heir H. Wayne Huizenga Jr., property records show.

Huizenga Jr., the eldest son of entrepreneur H. Wayne Huizenga, plans to knock down the nearly 7,600-square-foot house at 3100 North Flagler Drive, said Billy Nash of the Keyes Company’s Nash Group. Nash represented Huizenga Jr., who is president of Fort Lauderdale-based Huizenga Holdings and CEO of Rybovich Superyacht Marina in West Palm. Liza Pulitzer of Brown Harris Stevens of Palm Beach represented O’Donnell, a former Star Island resident.

The five-bedroom house, built in 1957, sits on an acre of land with golf course views, a deep water dock and 178 feet of waterfront. O’Donnell paid just under $5 million for the home in July 2015, according to property records. She listed it for sale in December 2016 for $6 million.

In October, Huizenga Jr. sold his 11,000-square-foot home mansion at 16191 Quiet Vista Circle for $6.7 million to Office Depot CEO Gerry Smith.

Huizenga Jr.’s father co-founded Waste Management, led Blockbuster Video in the 1990s and has owned three professional sport teams in South Florida: the Miami Marlins, the Miami Dolphins and the Florida Panthers.

Source: The Real Deal

Cofe Properties buys warehouse portfolio in Hialeah

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Industrial portfolio in West Hialeah and IPA’s Douglas Mandel  (Credit: IPA)

Commercial real estate investment firm Cofe Properties just paid $32.5 million for a portfolio of warehouses in Hialeah.

The deal includes 41 warehouses totaling roughly 376,000 square feet in two areas: west of the Red Road and north of the Hialeah Expressway, and west of 16th Avenue and north of Okeechobee Road.

Cofe Cix West Hialeah LLC, an affiliate of Cofe Properties, paid nearly $90 per square foot for the portfolio. The seller is an affiliate of the Boston-based asset manager, TA Realty. The company purchased the portfolio in 2006 for $24.1 million.

Douglas Mandel and Benjamin Silver of Marcus & Millichap’s Institutional Property Advisors brokered both sides of the deal. Mandel said in a statement that nearly all of the tenants’ leases are expected to increase 4.5 percent annually, triple net.

The buildings range from about 4,000 square feet to 28,000 square feet, with a majority of tenants made up of mom-and-pop business, like cabinet makers, manufacturers and some auto shops, Mandel said.

The portfolio sale is another example of recent investment in South Florida’s industrial market. In December, Blackstone Group announced it will buy a 22 million-square-foot industrial portfolio for $1.8 billion, 1.1 million square feet of which will be in South Florida.

In 2016, Cofe paid $16.6 million to purchase the Webster Business Park, near Miami International Airport, from TA Realty.

Source: The Real Deal

Blanca CRE dives into property management

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

‘Tere Blanca and Peter Romero

Blanca Commercial Real Estate is jumping into property management.

Tere Blanca’s company announced it brought on Peter Romero to lead the new division. Romero previously managed an office and mixed-use portfolio of more than 1 million square feet at Taylor & Mathis and Cushman & Wakefield.

In October, Blanca brought on John Guitar from Florida East Coast Industries as managing director and vice chair.  Guitar, who plans to lead the statewide expansion of the Brickell-based commercial brokerage, said he expects the property management division to include existing clients and new buildings.

Facing competition from co-working companies like WeWork, landlords are increasingly looking to build a sense of community in their buildings with unique programs, Blanca and Guitar said.

Romero’s team includes Arturo Cepero, a CPA and certified fraud examiner, and Diana Pubchara, chief marketing officer. Pubchara will focus on creating customized programs for landlords and will oversee brand development, according to a release.

Source: The Real Deal

The LGBT litmus test

Monday, January 8, 2018

From the January issue:

Elizabeth Ann Stribling-Kivlan (Photo by Sasha Maslo

In the early 1990s, gay and lesbian professionals in commercial real estate formed a professional networking group to help each other find jobs. But you could say the group was in the closet.

That’s because it wasn’t until years later that it actually named itself — as the Gay Real Estate Group, or GREG — outing itself in the process.

“GREG wasn’t called GREG until [relatively recently]. It didn’t have a name; it was just a group,” said Mitch Draizin, president of the Midtown-based investment firm Longview Capital Advisors. “It’s not a big deal to be gay in the real estate business anymore.”

On the surface, examples abound of real estate players who publicly identify as gay or lesbian — from Douglas Elliman power broker Fredrik Eklund posting photos of his husband and their newborn twins on social media to Sorgente Group’s Veronica Mainetti lighting up her iconic Flatiron Building with the colors of the pride flag.

But it’s impossible to quantify just how many members of the community exist in the industry. Unlike women (whose names and photos obviously often give away their sex) and minorities (who can often be identified in photos on company websites), the same is not true for the gay and lesbian population.

          Related: When the glass ceiling won’t break

And there seems to be more reticence about discussing sexuality in connection with the workplace than there is with gender or race discrimination.

While progress has clearly been made since those early-1990s days — not long after AIDS began tearing through the gay community — companies have adopted more inclusive policies.

In addition, LGBT sources told The Real Deal that individuals aren’t held back by the same kinds of systemic barriers that women and minorities face.

Still, it’s not as though homophobia is nonexistent in real estate. And some said they still struggle to get benefits at work. (A 2016 survey conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management found that while 94 percent of respondents said their companies offered health care coverage for opposite-sex spouses, 83 percent said the same coverage was offered to same-sex couples.)

And at least on the residential side, it seems that more brokers are out and open than in the commercial sector — but that could be because residential agents are far more active on social media as a part of their own branding and marketing strategies.

In addition, there is still a lack of awareness sometimes among co-workers, who often assume someone is heterosexual or who might make an insensitive offhand remark.

“People often will ask me about my husband. And I don’t have a husband; I have a wife,” said Elizabeth Ann Stribling-Kivlan, president of Stribling & Associates, which her mother founded in 1980.

She said that while she considers the industry inclusive, there is room to improve, particularly when it comes to gender awareness and sensitivity.

“I’m very involved in the LGBT nonprofit world, so I believe you never make an assumption about whether someone’s gay or straight or bi or trans. Everyone has their own experience,” she said, noting that she grew up surrounded by successful family friends from the LGBT community.

Mainetti said it’s been an evolution. “I lived for far too long being suppressed that when I made the decision to start working in the male-dominated field of real estate, I promised not to ever compromise or adapt myself, but instead embrace my gender and sexual orientation proudly,” she said via email.

Nonetheless, she noted that it doesn’t play a big part in her work life.

“Separating myself as a woman, or as a member of the LBGTQ community, or in any other exclusionary faction, for me, seems to be counterproductive to moving forward and simply focusing on the work itself,” she said.

“I made a conscious decision a very long time ago that I refused to be labeled or pigeonholed in any type of group which ultimately ends up pitting ‘us’ against ‘them,’” she added.

Many who talked to TRD said advancing the cause today is less about whether LGBT professionals face discrimination on an individual level at work — though that’s clearly important. Rather, it’s more about which companies are making institutional changes and adopting the most progressive policies.

“There would have been a time when you looked for whether same-sex partners are covered as an indication or a signal of whether it’s an inclusive environment,” said Sam Chandan, head of New York University’s Schack Institute of Real Estate, whose husband is an academic at Columbia University. “Now it’s probably flipped to the other side, where you may flag an organization that didn’t.”

In November, the Human Rights Campaign, an LGBT advocacy group, published its Corporate Equality Index, which ranked nearly 950 of the largest U.S. companies based on things like whether they offer equal benefits for spouses and partners and if they support employee-run diversity groups.

While a number of real estate firms did not participate — Equity Residential, Vornado Realty Trust, Boston Properties, General Growth Properties and Simon Property Group, to name a few — the ones that did logged strong scores.

On the commercial side, for example, CBRE, JLL and Lendlease landed perfect 100s. On the residential side, Redfin logged a 95, while Realogy got an 85.

Nonetheless, the issue of equality in the workplace is far from settled.

While a U.S. Supreme Court landmark ruling in 2015 legalized same-sex marriage, in December the court let stand a lower court decision that gay spouses may not be entitled to government-subsidized workplace benefits.

For some, there’s still trepidation about the consequences — whether actual or perceived — of being out in the workplace.

Others are not only out, but make their LGBT identity part of their business.

Developer Ian Reisner ran the gay-friendly Out Hotel at 510 West 42nd Street before he sold the ground lease last year for $24 million to Merchants Hospitality, which is repositioning it as a Playboy Supper Club. And BFC Partners, whose founding partner Donald Capoccia is gay, is co-developing a 17-story affordable housing project in Brooklyn for LGBT seniors.

Real estate attorney Jack Osborn, one of the co-leaders of the GREG group, said it’s important for LGBT professionals to be advocates in whatever way they can.

“I think that being in a high-level position in a major corporate job is a pretty good thing. And I think everybody has to play a different role. They have to use advocacy in the way they see best,” he said.

The next battleground for the LGBT community is likely to be gender identity, which has become increasingly fluid. Indeed, according to the Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy at the UCLA School of Law, an estimated 1.4 million people — or around 0.6 percent of adults in the country — identify as transgender.

Stribling-Kivlan, for one, declined to provide TRD with a male-versus-female breakdown of her firm’s brokers, saying it’s not the firm’s place to identify its employees by gender.

But she was the only one to take that stance.

She also said that if she lived outside of New York, she might not have the same view of how gender and sexuality play out in the workplace.

“If I lived in rural Alabama, my answer might be different,” Stribling-Kivlan said. “I know the world isn’t all rainbows and unicorns everywhere. I wish it was, because those are both really fun things.”

Source: The Real Deal

Orlando-based builder plans 1,000 homes in Central Florida

Sunday, January 7, 2018

William S. Orosz, president of Hanover Capital Partners

Hanover Capital Partners is launching developments in Central Florida where the Orlando-based home builder plans to put up 1,000 houses over the next two years. Hanover, a family-owned business led by president William S. Orosz, plans to build nine communities of single-family homes in Osceola and Lake counties.

The Orosz family has started and sold a series of home-building companies including Royal Oak Homes LLC, which AV Homes, Inc., acquired in 2014 for $65 million. Robert McEwan, first vice president of brokerage firm CBRE, said Hanover  faces larger competitors in Central Florida but sometimes can move faster to take advantage of land-acquisition opportunities. [Orlando Sentinel] Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal

SEC investigating Kushner Companies’ use of the EB-5 program

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Jared Kushner with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission headquarters in the background. (Credit: DoD Photo by Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Dominique A. Pineiro, left; AgnosticPreachersKid/Wikimedia Commons)

From TRD New York: The global kerfuffle sparked last year when Kushner Companies’ principal Nicole Kushner Meyer mentioned her brother Jared during a pitch to investors appears to have triggered an investigation from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Wall Street Journal reports Kushner Companies received a subpoena in May 2017 asking for information on how the company uses the EB-5 program, the so-called “crack cocaine of real estate financing,” which gives green cards to foreign investors who commit a minimum of $500,000 to American businesses.

Though the specifics of the SEC’s subpoena are still unknown, it was issued the same month as a different subpoena, filed by federal prosecutors from the U.S. attorney’s office in Brooklyn, asking the company for information related to projects using funding generated from the EB-5 program. According to the Journal, the two offices are collaborating.

The nature of the federal prosecutors’ subpoena includes email correspondence for One Journal Square, the embattled $1 billion pair of towers Meyer was fundraising for in Shanghai when her infamous misstep last spring occurred.

Meyer’s sordid pitch was part of a marketing campaign in Beijing and Shanghai with the goal of raising $150 million from Chinese investors –who make up the majority of EB-5 visa recipients– for the company’s One Journal Square project in New Jersey. In addition to Meyer’s controversial presentation, the campaign’s local organizer, QWOS Group, also known as Qiaowai, came under fire for allegedly misrepresenting the program and the group’s ties to the Trump administration.

In response to confirmation of the probe, Kushner Companies recycled a previous statement to the press, originally issued to the Journal in response to the subpoena from the Brooklyn office, denying wrong-doing and cooperation with the legal requests.

Jared Kushner was in charge of Kushner Companies until last year when he was named White House Advisor and subsequently resigned, selling most – but not all — of his stakes in the business. [WSJ] — Erin Hudson

Source: The Real Deal