How the world discovers South Florida

Press

NHL’s Jacob Trouba joins Dan Marino as celeb buyers at Auberge Fort Lauderdale

Rising young hockey professional Jacob Trouba, a former first-round pick who currently plays for the NHL’s Winnipeg Jets, has joined Miami Dolphins legend Dan Marino as celebrity buyers at the upcoming Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale.

Trouba purchased a $1.4 million unit at the beachfront condominium rising at 2200 North Ocean Boulevard. A collaboration between The Related Group, Fortune International Group and the Fairwinds Group, the project’s 17-story North tower topped off recently and is expected to be completed in 2018. The North Tower has two remaining units while the South Tower is over 60 percent sold.

The 23-year-old’s residence will be in the South Tower, overlooking the ocean. It has one bedroom, two bathrooms, and a den.

In July, the penthouse at Auberge sold for $9.5 million ($1,670 per square foot), a record sale for a condo in the area. Building amenities include a spa, a restaurant, a Napa Valley Wine Cellar, a fitness center, a Golf golf simulator, a children’s playroom, and a club room with multimedia facilities, billiards and gaming tables.

Read More

Se presenta nuevo emprendimiento inmobiliario de lujo en Miami

Se trata de Missoni Baia Miami, presentado por Edgardo Defortuna, presidente y fundador de Fortune International.

Un nuevo emprendimiento inmobiliario sorprende en Miami. El pasado 22 de agosto se presentó “Missoni Baia Miami Residences”, un condominio de 249 residencias ubicadas en East Edgewater. Con un diseño visionario, una vista despampanante y una destreza innovadora, Missoni reúne características de exclusividad, lujo y simpleza a la vez.
El anfitrión de la presentación fue un cordobés nacido en Buenos Aires, un emprendedor voluntarioso y un hombre de confianza: Edgardo Defortuna, Presidente y fundador de Fortune International.

Cómo fue la velada

A las 19.30 “La Mansión” del Four Seasons abrió sus puertas e invitó a personalidades destacadas de la talla de Hugo Pulenta, Presidente de Porsche Argentina, Fabián Zitta, diseñador de alta costura, y el cirujano de renombre, Alejandro Druetto. “En Miami hemos crecido como ciudad y somos una de las principales capitales del mundo. Venir a Argentina a presentar productos como Missoni me enorgullece”, aseveró Edgardo Defortuna. “Este proyecto es el que considero de mayor valor en Miami porque el área donde está localizado es un área en la que se puede comprar algo por la mitad del valor de lo que uno puede acceder en Miami Beach”, aseguró Edgardo.

Aún hay muchas unidades disponibles y hay muy buenas posibilidades para poder elegir las mejores residencias. Mientras se brindaba con champagne de la mejor calidad, los invitados disfrutaron de la música de los tenores Claudia Menkarsky y Gabriel Centeno, cantantes líricos
del Teatro Colón. Además, mientras se tomaban decisiones sobre posibles inversiones y se deliberaba sobre aspectos económicos, André Fontana escoltaba el encuentro con las melodías de su piano.

“Todos deberían tener la posibilidad de ir a Miami porque lo que está ocurriendo en esa ciudad es digno de ser visto y digno de disfrutar”, manifestó Walter Ramírez Moyano, empresario argentino y diplomado en Marketing en la Universidad de Belgrano. “Lo más lindo de Miami es volver porque es un paraíso. Los invito a aprovechar de todas las posibilidades de inversión que hay y los espero para mostrarles las residencias en Estados Unidos”, concluyó Edgardo Defortuna.

Fortune International Group es uno de los principales referentes y protagonistas del Real Estate, no solo de Florida sino de todo Estados Unidos, con 18 oficinas y más de 1000 brokers.

Read More

Tendencia pensando en los mas pequenos de la casa

Read More

Missoni Baia Miami: hábitat iridiscente

El universo de colores y líneas de la reconocida marca italiana también será un referente arquitectónico de la Bahía de Biscayne

Con 57 pisos distribuidos en un aproximado de 200 pies de altura, Missoni Baia custodiará la costa de Biscayne con un poderoso tesoro en su interior: el legado artesanal y creativo que Ottavio y Rosita Missoni imprimieron a la marca desde su creación en 1953. La colorida paleta de la casa de moda será la principal protagonista distribuida en varios espacios y en varias piezas de la colección Missoni Home. Con las comodidades de un resort de lujo, sus residentes habitarán en la privacidad pero con la libertad suficiente como para disfrutar de un spa, canchas tenis elevadas, amplios gimnasios o de un día de sol en cualquiera de sus piscinas, una de ellas con vista infinita a la bahía.

Cada una de las 249 residencias –entre las que cuentan tres dúplex y dos penthouses– cuenta con increíbles vistas de la ciudad y del Océano Atlántico en fusión con diseños exclusivos de la marca divinamente curados por Paris Forino, quien dispuso fondos neutros para resaltar mucho más las piezas de mobiliario y arte bajo la dirección de Ángela Missoni, directora creativa de la marca; OKO Group, compañía de desarrollo urbanístico fundada por Vladislav Doronin y Edgardo De Fortuna de Fortune Group.

Read More

Missoni propone una arquitectura a la moda

La fama de la reconocida casa de moda italiana se afirma en sus diseños de punto de gran colorido, que ha seducido, desde 1953, a varias generaciones. Hoy presenta la primera residencia de la marca Missoni de 57 pisos frente al mar, que será el nuevo referente paisajístico de la Bahía de Biscayne.

Como muchas marcas de lujo y moda, tales como Fendi, Armani, Chloé y Phillip Lim, la firma italiana ha decidido innovar en otros campos, y eligió el mundo de la arquitectura y el diseño de interiores. Como parte de la tendencia actual, Missoni ha preferido desarrollar proyectos residenciales en las mejores ciudades del mundo.

Missoni Baia, su primera residencia, está enfocada en el mantenimiento del patrimonio artesanal de Missoni. La integración experta de estilo, artesanía e ingeniería hacen de la experiencia residencial, un proyecto de calidad incomparable y presenta al público de clase mundial una edificación impactante, que sobresale con una presencia imponente, tanto en el horizonte de la ciudad como en el paisaje de la línea costera.

El diseño interior del edificio incorpora tanto la colorida paleta de diseño de Missoni como la colección de mobiliario Missoni Home, en formas muy creativas, incluyendo todos los espacios y áreas públicas del edificio. Los residentes tienen acceso a un conjunto completo de espacios con estilo diseñados en colaboración con Missoni, que ofrecen las comodidades de un lujoso resort en un entorno residencial privado. Las características incluyen una cubierta sobre el agua, diseñada para tomar el sol todo el día, con cabañas bien equipadas; cinco piscinas diferentes, incluyendo una olímpica, piscinas de inmersión caliente y fría, una piscina para niños y una piscina infinita con vista a la bahía; cancha de tenis elevadas y un amplio gimnasio y spa, también con vista a la bahía.

Muchas de las 249 residencias ofrecen diseños de piso por nivel con múltiples vistas a la ciudad, la bahía, Miami Beach y el horizonte del Océano Atlántico. La edificación cuenta con tres espectaculares residencias dúplex con amplias terrazas privadas cerca del borde del agua, y dos penthouse equipados con piscinas con vista a la bahía y ventanales completos de cielo abierto. La diseñadora de interiores Paris Forino ha ideado fondos neutros, pero lujosos, para permitir la conjugación de una amplia gama de mobiliario y arte.

Read More

Design vision for Auberge Beach Residences & Spa

Internationally acclaimed design team, curated contemporary art collection will set the stage for the ultimate coastal lifestyle

Fort Lauderdale, Fla. — Unparalleled luxury residences and world-class lifestyle amenities are on the horizon on Florida’s Gold Coast, courtesy of Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale, the most refined high-rise and only on-the-sand luxury residential offering on Fort Lauderdale Beach. The veteran development team—The Related Group, Fortune International Group and The Fairwinds Group—personally selected esteemed New York-based interior design firm Meyer Davis Studio, Inc. to envision a setting that will complement Auberge Resorts Collection’s signature authentic luxury.

Meyer Davis, whose award-winning portfolio includes 1 Hotel South Beach, W Chicago Lakeshore, and Paramount Hotel in New York City, believes that great design works on multiple levels, weaving together bold design moves with striking details to create both immediate impact and lasting memory. The firm’s one-of-a-kind concept for the recently announced 171-residence beachfront condominium property celebrates honest, natural materials that are elevated by refined and unexpected applications. Interiors will be infused with a sense of understated luxury and sanctuary that complements the singular natural setting with a feeling of lightness and effortless elegance.

“Auberge Beach Residences is located on one of the most beautiful stretches of coastline in South Florida,” said Will Meyer, principal of Meyer Davis Studio, Inc., along with Gray Davis. “The site’s serenity and calm environs informed our design direction—from palette to material choices. It is an honor to work with Related, Fortune and Fairwinds to create a landmark community that creates a sense of place unique to the destination and takes cues from the graceful style of Auberge Resorts, whose properties are acclaimed for their timelessness and intimate, understated elegance.”

Two iconic glazed structures, designed by internationally recognized architecture firm Nichols, Brosch, Wurst, Wolf & Associates, will rise above the Atlantic Ocean. The sleek, organic façades will be a departure from both coastal contemporary and traditional designs, striking a balance between natural forms and luxury rooted in a restrained sophistication and orienting each residence to capture sweeping ocean views. Set on 450 linear feet of pristine beachfront, the design blurs the boundaries between interior spaces and the exquisite environs beyond through the use of tones and textures lent from the location itself.

Auberge Beach Residences will welcome residents with a sense of community rooted in a casual, yet refined urban beach retreat. The light-filled lobby will feature sophisticated, relaxed seating groups arranged to spark conversation and interaction among residents. Bright, neutral tones and natural wood finishes will provide a gallery-like environ to showcase the museum-quality contemporary art collection that will be installed throughout the property. The cornerstone of the collection is La Maternidad, a monumental bronze sculpture by celebrated contemporary master Fernando Botero.

“Original works of art will infuse Auberge Beach Residences & Spa with energy and sophistication,” said Jorge M. Pérez, Founder, Chairman and CEO of The Related Group. “Artist Fernando Botero is among the most renowned artists of his generation. The introduction of his La Maternidad sculpture to the property’s permanent collection signifies our commitment to introduce an unmatched luxury lifestyle and cultural experience to Fort Lauderdale.”

The interior design of each residence, ranging in size from 1,500 to 5,000 square feet, will reflect Auberge Beach Residences’ signature style of relaxed coastal elegance. Flow-through contemporary floor plans will feature nearly 10-foot floor-to-ceiling windows for a seamless indoor/outdoor experience. Continuous glass railings will enclose oversized terraces, some boasting private pools, for unobstructed city and ocean views. Paying homage to Auberge’s culinary legacy, Meyer Davis designed the living spaces around a spacious contemporary chef’s kitchen at the heart of each home.

The open, flexible design of the beachfront Auberge restaurant will showcase unsurpassed views of the Atlantic Ocean’s eternal blue tones to meld the indoors with the pristine shoreline beyond. Meyer Davis has become the foremost design firm for the world’s most prominent restaurateurs and celebrity chefs, with their work receiving accolades in design competitions and the press. “This site has a long history as a dining destination in the days of the Ireland’s Inn,” said Meyer. “Auberge is renowned for exceptional culinary offerings, and the new restaurant is poised to become an unrivalled dining experience. The spectacular outdoor bar and veranda will be one of South Florida’s most breathtaking dining destinations.” The flexible design will cater to year-round dining, accommodating large and intimate gatherings from sunup to sundown and deep into the night. At the center of the restaurant’s design are casually elegant indoor/outdoor seating arrangements and an expansive outdoor bar, which are designed to enhance the beachside setting and signature restaurant’s lively American bistro concept. The restaurant will feature unique dining experiences created by highly skilled chefs using the finest ingredients.

Read More

The New Home of Style? Miami’s Residential Fashion Boom

Designers have long been drawn to Miami, with Gianni Versace, Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger all having owned homes there over the years.

But today, the Miami real estate market is hotter than ever among the fashion set — especially in a business sense. Fendi, Armani and Missoni are plastering their names on superluxury residential towers springing up across the city after having dabbled in the hotel world. Meanwhile, hard-core fashion followers (or in some cases their generous spouses looking for an original gift) appear willing to drop millions of dollars on apartments in the designer-branded buildings.

Setting the trend is Armani, which has partnered with developers Dezer Development and The Related Group on Residences by Armani/Casa in Sunny Isles Beach. The 56-story César Pelli-designed building, comprising 308 apartments priced between $2 million and $15 million each, isn’t due for completion until 2019, but already 72 percent of the apartments have been sold.

Gil Dezer of Dezer Development is no stranger to branded buildings, having worked on six with Donald Trump (before he became President, of course). He recently completed the Porsche Tower in Miami, the world’s first condominiums to have elevators that take residents directly to their apartments while sitting in their cars. “I was in Dubai when I stayed at the Armani Hotel and I said, ‘This is wow. We need to bring this to America,’” he said.

However, he admitted that it was a challenge to convince the famed Italian fashion house to take part. “It was not easy. They do their homework very well. We can do more damage than good as Armani is doing $9 billion a year in sales. They don’t need the few bucks that I’m going to give them. This is more about that they want to have a real strong presence and it helps their brand and it also helps sell [their] furniture.”

Dezer finally succeeded in persuading the Italian company to license their brand to him and today Armani is designing all the communal areas and for an additional cost to the buyer can also offer interior design, at about $300 a square foot. For the largest apartments, that works out at just over $1 million.

Armani has complete control of the interior design of the wider building, with Dezer admitting he has had to become “opinionless” on it. And, as with everything his company does, Giorgio Armani is personally involved. “He’s actually very involved, which is good and bad,” admitted Dezer. “It’s good because we get his stamp of approval, so we really know it’s an Armani thing and not just slapping a brand on. But we have to wait for him to get off his boat to approve something and we have to wait for him to fly here and fly there. Even if we need to approve an ad, he approves everything.”

Three blocks south of Bal Harbour, Fendi Château Residences, a 12-story, 58-unit boutique building, has attracted a range of buyers since it was completed last year (only four apartments are left), including some devoted Fendi shoppers. “We have some buyers that are truly, truly Fendi lovers who normally furnish everything Fendi. We had somebody who purchased a unit for his wife as a gift for their anniversary and he designed everything in Fendi because she loves the brand,” said Helen Ashford of the Château Group, the developer.

At $6.5 million for a three-bedroom apartment, these pads — which come with a use of a communal indoor spa, private chef, cinema and children’s room — have the highest starting prices of all the fashion-branded residences in Miami, with a penthouse setting buyers back as much as $25 million.

Meanwhile at the budget end of the market (if one can call half-a-million dollars budget), is Missoni Baia, a partnership between the Italian fashion family and OKO Group, the Miami-based property development firm founded by Russian billionaire real estate mogul Vladislav Doronin, in the up-and-coming Edgewater neighborhood.

Prices at the 57-story, 249-unit building overlooking Biscayne Bay, which is yet to break ground but is due for completion in the summer of 2020, range from $500,000 to $3.5 million. When it is ready, the communal areas will be decked out in Missoni’s trademark colorful designs, while residents will have access to five pools. Like Armani and Fendi, Missoni will decorate apartments at an additional cost.

And finally, also jumping in on the trend to join the apartment fray in Sunshine City is Karl Lagerfeld. The couturier has designed a lobby in The Estates at Acqualina, twin, 50-story luxury towers with 245 units that come complete with an ice rink and traders’ room where apartments cost between $4 million and $9 million.

Much like Armani, Lagerfeld has complete design control and is very hands-on. “The guy is legendary. He has come up with enormous creative solutions for our lobbies. Everything in the lobby will be his touch,” said South African-born developer Jules Trump of The Trump Group (no relation to the President). “Karl’s aesthetic, in particular, will be appreciated and valued by our guests, who desire an incomparable level of opulence, luxury, design and style.”

Why Miami?

Dubai, Beijing and London are among other cities that are home — or soon will be — to residential buildings with interiors designed by famous fashion houses. But Miami is at the heart of this booming trend, partly a result of slowing luxury residential sales and political and economic uncertainty. Combined, these trends have made competition tougher and Miami developers more determined than ever to make their projects stand out.

“I see it as a way that developers are trying to differentiate themselves among all the competition in new development. Before this, it was cars with the Porsche Tower and the Aston Martin Residences and then the use of ‘star-chitects’ and famous interior designers,” said Jonathan Miller, chief executive officer of appraisal firm Miller Samuel.

“It’s not enough to say that I have the most beautiful building, the best views or the most welcoming lobby. They have to differentiate and they have to go to another level. We haven’t seen much of that in other U.S. markets. If it proves to be an effective branding mechanism, we will absolutely see it elsewhere.”

Yet its effectiveness is still uncertain. While sales figures seem healthy (not all buildings have released data), satisfaction levels remain to be seen — and won’t be until the new owners have settled in.

Jay Parker, ceo of Douglas Elliman Real Estate Florida, said while Armani, Fendi and Missoni are recognizable and influential brands synonymous with luxury, what remains unclear is whether the quality of the fashion houses’ products will carry over into all aspects of the residential developments from the food to service.

“When people buy in Ritz-Carlton, the level of service is established. We don’t know that yet with Armani or the others,” he said. “After all, fashion houses are not expected to influence the service element as much as the design element.”

As for why these big fashion houses want a slice of residential real estate, Robert Burke, the chairman and ceo of retail consultancy Robert Burke Associates, said one of the biggest desires of any label is to be a lifestyle brand and “this just allows them to be even more of a lifestyle brand because ultimately that’s what people are living.”

Read More

Missoni Baia Releases Redesigned Floor Plans Based Off of Buyer Feedback

Russian real estate magnate and property developer, Vladislav Doronin, of OKO Group, the developers behind Edgewater’s Missoni Baia, has released redesigned their floorplans that they tailored based off of buyer feedback. After tapping Fortune International Group in the spring (2017) to take over sales of Missoni Baia following a successful pre-sales campaign, the Missoni Baia sales team has been busy hosting events in the Hamptons and south of the border in Colombia, Chile, and Argentina while they gear up for a September groundbreaking. The project is the first to be branded by the Italian fashion house. Missoni’s home collection and signature design palettes will be used throughout the building’s public spaces and amenities. Asymptote Architecture and Revuelta Architecture will design the project, along with landscaping by Swiss architect Enzo Enea and interiors by Paris Forino Design.

“Domestic and foreign buyers looking to purchase second or third homes in Miami, their primary residence is generally a larger home so when they come on vacation they still want the high level of quality, services, and amenities that the Missoni Baia brand offers but prefer to have a smaller size residents to simplify their overall vacation experience. The introduction of the smaller floorplans has proven to be successful with our recent sales,” said Jim Cohen, Senior Vice President of Development Sales, Fortune International Group.

Read More

Auberge Beach Residences and Spa Sells Penthouse at a Record-Breaking $9.5 Million

The final penthouse residence at Auberge Beach Residences and Spa in Fort Lauderdale has sold with a record-breaking price tag at $9.5 million. The two-story, five-bedroom, six-and-a-half bathroom penthouse boasts 5,686 square feet, equaling $1,670 per square foot, the highest price per square foot ever sold in Fort Lauderdale and Broward County.

With more than 3,700 square feet of outdoor space, the penthouse will have a balcony wrapping around three sides of the unit, as well as floor-to-ceiling windows which showcase panoramic views of the Atlantic coastline, and a spiral staircase leading to the private rooftop terrace and pool. Residents will have access to first-class amenities including two gourmet restaurants, a world-class spa, a wine cellar, oceanfront swimming pools, the world’s best aboutGolf simulator, a state-of-the-art fitness center, among others.

Auberge Beach Residences has seen $75 million in purchases in the first half of 2017 alone. The North Tower, which was topped off last month, is expected to be complete in late 2017, with only three residences remaining. The South Tower is over 60 percent sold and is set to open in Spring 2018.

Read More

KDHAMPTONS REAL ESTATE: THE NEW RITZ-CARLTON RESIDENCES, SUNNY ISLES BEACH HAS HAMPTONITES HEADING FOR MIAMI

New Yorkers have always invested in Miami real estate, and in recent years there has been a fast growing number of Hamptonites specifically who are migrating south for an extended off-season. With the power of new world class developments like the Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach it’s no surprise that many East Enders are trading in their snow boots and choosing to maintain an oceanfront lifestyle year round. With a quick and easy two and a half hour flight, multiple private airports, and a new level of buildings, service, art, dining, shopping….Miami checks every box!

The Ritz-Carlton is synonymous with unparalleled service and unrivaled excellence. Renowned developers Fortune International Group and Château Group aim to transform oceanfront living with this stunning new property which begins with a winding drive, facing the ocean, leading up to the stunning 649 ft. residential tower, comprised of 212 residences and managed by The Ritz-Carlton.

Sitting on 250 feet of oceanfront property along South Florida’s pristine Sunny Isles Beach, the building’s curvilinear structure was designed by world-class architectural firm Arquitectonica and references the organic landscape of swaying dunes. Its fluid droplet silhouette ensures all homes are bathed in natural light and respect the basic principles of Feng Shui.

Designed to provide sweeping views of the Atlantic Ocean, the tower features cascading terraces with ample 360-degree views. Penthouse gardens dissolve at its uppermost crest, creating the silhouette of an impressive yacht or cruise liner. In addition, The Residences features a grand porte-cochere and lush landscaping created by Arquitectonica GEO. A fully equipped private residential building, with no transient use or hotel on the premises means residents of the property enjoy a private elevator lobby, and select homes include service quarters.

Inspired by Monaco’s elite Yacht Club and referencing the beauty of the natural environment, Michele Bönan’s timeless interiors are a mosaic of details brought to life in a refined, neutral palette. Bönan’s unique philosophy adheres to the building’s soft curvature, introducing floor-to-ceiling glass panels and custom-designed furnishings that perfectly evoke the exclusive Sunny Isles Beach.

The Residences’ interiors epitomize a contemporary minimalist aesthetic, complemented by a vast array of exceptional materials, textiles and environmental innovations, all selected to ensure unrivaled comfort and relaxation. Relying on skilled artisans, everything from furniture to flooring has been conceived to honor the luxurious beach lifestyle.

Upon arrival, owners are greeted by a striking four-story glass lobby, overlooking a tranquil pool and manicured garden connecting to the beach. An airy double height atrium leads directly to a luxurious spa and fitness center with unobstructed views of the Atlantic Ocean. Whether intimate or grand, Bönan’s common spaces are created to enhance the experience of residents across the property.

Drawing from South Beach’s 1960s heyday, Michele Bönan’s design blends the spirit of modern day Miami with its rich architectural past. Residences boast soaring 10 ft. ceilings, and kitchens designed with the finest Italian cabinetry, stone countertops and European appliances – including a wine cooler and cappuccino maker. Expansive living spaces look onto the beach below. Master bedrooms, equipped with glass walls and enviable panoramic views, feature walk-in closets and generously appointed en suites rendered in Italian marble.

Read More

PRIVATE HAMPTONS PREVIEW OF RITZ-CARLTON RESIDENCES, SUNNY ISLES BEACH

The Hamptons recently served as a unique backdrop for a special private preview of The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach. Joint developers Fortune International Group and Château Group hosted an intimate cocktail at Kozu Hamptons restaurant in Southampton to showcase their project and its remaining homes to prospective buyers. Completion of the 212-residence building is slated for 2019. The condominium tower, which will have no hotel on the premises, is being touted as one of the most anticipated offerings to enter the market. While enjoying hors d’oeuvres and signature drinks, guests of the exclusive outdoor event, which took place July 16, were treated to highlights of the condominium tower, which features designs by Arquitectonica and interiors by acclaimed Florentine architect Michele Bönan. The event coincided with the developers securing registration in New York to market and sell the last available residences. For additional information about The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach, call 305.503.5811 or visit http://www.theresidencessunnyislesbeach.com.

Read More

Construction Update: Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Tops-Off in Fort Lauderdale

Auberge Beach Residences and Spa has officially topped-off the north tower. The north tower is almost sold out, with just 3 residences for sale remaining, and the south tower is over 60% sold. Auberge Beach Residences & Spa features 171 flow-through condominium residences spread over two towers designed by Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe & Associates with interiors by Meyer Davis Design Studio. Units feature private elevator access, sunrise and sunset terraces, and floor-to-ceiling glass for unobstructed ocean views. The project is being developed by PRH Fairwinds, a partnership between Related Group, Fairwinds Group and Fortune International. The building’s amenities include 2 beachfront swimming pools, full-service spa, 2 restaurants, golf simulator and a state-of-the-art fitness center. Delivery is expected in the summer of 2018.

Read More

The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach Unveil Sneak Preview Video Tour

Following the completion of its concrete foundation pour and subsequent vertical rise, The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach have released new, fly-through-style, computer-generated videos of two of the building residences, offering the most in-depth, breathtaking views of these ocean-facing homes to date. The Ritz Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach is being developed as a joint venture between Fortune International Group and Château Group. The luxury-residential is designed by Arquitectonica, with interiors by acclaimed Florentine architect Michele Bönan. Take the video tour of an A Unit and an E Unit below.

The A Unit (shown above) is a 3 bedroom, 4.5 bathroom residence complete with a den and a service quarters with a separate entrance. The unit features north-facing, large living spaces with floor-to-ceiling glass, a lavish master bath, and an Italian-designed kitchen outfitted with top-of-the-line Caesarstone quartz countertops and Gaggenau appliances. The E Unit (shown below) is a southeast/southwest-facing 4 bedroom, 5.5 bathroom residence complete with a family room and service quarters.

“We feel that images alone are not enough to capture the essence of what daily life will look and feel like within these incredible residences,” said Edgardo Defortuna, CEO of Fortune International Group. “A state-of-the-art video tour takes buyers one step closer toward visualizing their dream homes on the water.”

“When we started designing this project, we knew we wanted to create spaces that focused on livability and long-term use,” said Manuel Grosskopf, CEO of Château Group. “The outcome of that vision is all the more encapsulated through these new tours, each of which highlights the units’ immense sizes and artful details — all complemented by what are arguably the best views of the water.”

The Ritz Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach will feature 212 residential condo units. Residences range from $2.6 million to $5.2 million, with penthouses offered upwards of $25 million. Amenities include a private club level on the 33rd floor, beach restaurant, pool deck, kids club, spa, fitness center and wellness center, among other top-line amenities. Construction has completed their foundation pour and has begun vertical rise. The building is slated for delivery in 2019.

Read More

HAMPTONS DINNER WITH COVER STAR KAROLINA KURKOVA

On Thursday, July 13th Hamptons Magazine hosted a dinner with cover star Karolina Kurkova. The model, actress, philanthropist and mother of two joined VIP guests of the magazine at the elegant Baron’s Cove in Sag Harbor for a dinner presented by Missoni Baia and Matthew Breitenbach and featuring gourmet dishes from Baron’s Cove executive chef Matty Boudreau and signature cocktails by EFFEN Vodka.

Read More

CULTURED IN THE HAMPTONS

On July 14, Cultured founder Sarah Harrelson and KDHamptons founder Kelli Delaney toasted the grand opening of the Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach. The celebrations at Maple Shade, Kelli’s Water Mill home, featured farm-to-table and dock-to-dish delicacies and refreshing summer cocktails by Whispering Angel Rosé.

Read More

Snaidero USA Confirmed as Kitchen Cabinet Provider for Ritz Carlton Residences in Sunny Isles Beach, FL

LOS ANGELES, July 11, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Snaidero USA, the leader in North American imports of European kitchen cabinets, is set to supply the kitchens for the 212 units of the Ritz Carlton Residences; a new Sunny Isles Beach, Miami project by Fortune International Group and Château Group.

The project – currently under construction – is the latest in a list of over 170 luxury high-rises (45,000+ units) that Snaidero USA has furnished since 1992, bringing the finest Italian design and craftsmanship all over North and Central America. Of these projects, more than 55 are in Florida.

The kitchen model chosen for the Ritz Carlton Residences is Snaidero LUX by Pietro Arosio. LUX’s minimalist aesthetic is rich in details and designed with respect for the environment – qualities that mirror the concept for the project’s interiors, designed by Michele Bönan and inspired by Monaco’s elite Yacht Club. Playing with light and clean lines, LUX creates a kitchen space that offers an intelligent blend of function, emotion, and personality.

The architecture of the Ritz Carlton Residences follows a design by world-class architectural firm Arquitectonica: the curvilinear structure references the organic landscape of swaying dunes and ensures all homes are bathed in natural light and respect the basic principles of Feng Shui.

The tower will include cascading terraces with 360-degree views and penthouse gardens dissolving at the uppermost crest, creating a yacht-like silhouette.

About Snaidero USA

Snaidero USA is the exclusive North American distributor of Snaidero kitchen cabinets, for almost 40 years, Snaidero USA has offered the finest in luxury Italian kitchen design to North America and Central America through a retail network of 22 showrooms. Snaidero USA also serves the multi-housing industry, partnering with top developers like, Howard Hughes Corporation, Fortune International Group, Turnberry, AEG, ASPAC Developments and the CMC Group, for over 170 projects completed to date. Today, under the leadership of its President, Comm. Dario Snaidero, Snaidero USA is the leader in North-American imports of European kitchen cabinets. Through its Snaidero USA Living collection, the company also offers made-in-Italy furniture for bathrooms and closets. The kitchens are made of eco-friendly, non-toxic materials through production processes with limited impact towards the environment. Snaidero USA is a member of the US Green Building Council. For more information, please visit www.snaidero-usa.com.

About Snaidero R. SpA (Italy)

Founded in 1946, Snaidero is Italy’s leading manufacturer of high-end kitchen cabinets. A wealth of experience built over 70 years of tradition and innovation. Always at the forefront of style and innovation, Snaidero partners with world-renowned artists, architects, and industrial designers, such as Ferrari stylist Pininfarina, international architect Massimo Iosa Ghini and acclaimed Italian designers Lucci and Orlandini, to create top-of-the-line products manufactured with environmental responsibility.

Read More

In vogue: resident curators, sommeliers in luxury properties

Developers are bringing in resident experts in high living to cater to luxury home owners as a doorman and concierge are no longer enough.

These days, however, buyers of luxury flats can expect an altogether different level of service. Developers are hiring everything from art curators, nutritionists, sommeliers, tech experts and even lifestyle consultants to be permanently on site, available at a moment’s notice to make the lives of the inhabitants easier.

“These are people who are spending millions of dollars on a unit,” said Patrick Campbell, vice president of developer the Related Group in Miami. “They want to leave their burdens behind and they have tastes that need to be fulfilled on a regular basis.”

At the Rem Koolhaas-designed Park Grove in Miami, which is slated for completion in 2018, a nautical concierge will be on staff, tasked with setting up activities like yachting, paddle-boarding, or kayaking through the mangroves.

“We are across the street from the marina and decided to push that theme,” said Campbell. Interested buyers get a taste of the service by being invited to try one of the marine activities while they’re inspecting the property.

The league of specialist employees being tapped by developers is largely contingent on the location and vibe of the building.

Urby, a building on Staten Island in New York, encourages its residents to pick fruit and vegetables at its 5,000 square foot on-site urban farm. They can also learn gardening tips from the building’s farmer-in-residence, who runs workshops on everything from bee-keeping to fermentation. At 555Ten, a new 600-unit building in New York, the anticipated 300 pet owners in residence will have access to an in-house dog-groomer, there exclusively for their use.

And at the Auberge Beach Residences & Spa in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, developers are operating on the assumption that residents want to lead healthier lives, and have hired a yoga specialist and lifestyle consultant, who works with buyers to personalise their diet regimens and guide them towards “a fully fledged lifestyle experience”, said Campbell.

Those being hired for these jobs are aware that they are in a rarefied group, but say the shift reflects this age of instant gratification.

“People are used to getting things as soon as they want them, and having everything available at their finger tips,” said J Kipton Cronkite, an art expert who parlayed a position curating art for public spaces in residential buildings into being the resident curator, available to weigh in on the private collections of buyers at the Prive Island Aventura development in South Florida.

The initiative taps into the assumption that buyers at the elite US$2.2 million to US$8.3 million homes have some sort of art collection, or at the least an interest in acquiring one. Cronkite says he can leverage his decade-plus experience in that world to advise buyers.

“People are decorating their spaces and art becomes part of the conversation,” he said. “They bring it up earlier in the conversation, especially if there is enough wall space, and I can recommend how their existing tastes and pieces fit in with the new space and help them navigate the gallery world.”

Mike Lavora and Adam Light are co-founders of Throw Me A Bone, a New York-based company that offers dog walking, grooming, training, boarding and veterinarian care around the city.

But they have taken up residence in an 800 square foot space at 555Ten, a midtown Manhattan apartment building, where they can service up to half of the residents in the 600-unit buildings.

“Our services are exclusive to the property,” said Light. “Pet owners drop their dogs off here when they go out for the day. It’s like childcare. It’s part of the evolution in the world of amenities – at least in Manhattan.”

And sometimes, the niche, specialist job is just for a bit of fun.

Colin Hannan, co-founder and managing director of Itz’ana Resort and Residences in Belize, was committed to finding a rum sommelier to add to his staff list at the property, where people are buying second homes.

“People move here, they want to get a sense of history,” said Hannan. “What’s more South American or Central American than rum?”

The homes, which are three-quarters sold and will open for move-ins in August, will be adjacent to a specialist rum room that will be stocked with 120 varieties. The rum sommelier, Enrico Cordenons, was sent to distilleries in Miami, New York and Guatemala to be trained and mentored by master distillers, and attended forums in India, Thailand and Mauritius.

“[Cordenons] will be on hand to set up tasting sessions with our owners and make them feel a part of the lifestyle,” said Hannan. “We’ll have to see how it evolves.”

Read More

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Introduces Luxury Spa, Restaurant and Record-Breaking Penthouses

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa is taking luxury living to the next level in its exclusive new beachfront property in Fort Lauderdale, recently setting a new price record in the Broward County real estate market.

The first and only on-the-sand luxury residential project in Fort Lauderdale is highly anticipated by the community for its world-class restaurant and spa.

The project is the newest addition to the timeless portfolio of exceptional properties that together comprise The Auberge Collection. The Related Group, Fortune International Group and The Fairwinds Group, which make up the development team behind Auberge Beach Residences & Spa, have worked to make this vision become a reality, as completion is currently anticipated in mid-2018.

The development team recently announced the $9.5 million sale of the final residence within the penthouse collection, which tops the previous record-breaking penthouse sale at Auberge Beach Residences & Spa in April 2016 for $8.9 million.

An intimate, on-site event celebrating the topping off of the first of the two 17-story towers took place last month. The North Tower, which features 57 residences, is approaching sellout with only three residences remaining. The South Tower is over 60 percent sold and includes residences that range from 1,350 to 4,000 square feet, with pricing from $1.8 million to $5 million.

When completed, the two-tower 171-unit project will feature spacious floorplans, expansive oceanfront terraces, gourmet kitchens and property amenities and services that will include the brand’s world-class spa and restaurant – both of which will be open to the public, a Napa Valley wine cellar, 24/7 valet and concierge, a state-of- the-art fitness center overlooking the pool deck, the world’s best aboutGolf golf simulator, family-friendly children’s playroom and a clubroom with multimedia facilities, billiards and gaming tables.

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale recently unveiled never-before-seen renderings of the highly anticipated Auberge spa and restaurant designed by award-winning New York-based interior design studio Meyer Davis. The design of the spa embodies sophistication with sleek floor-to-ceiling windows and soft mood lighting for residents and guests to enjoy.

The restaurant, when completed, will feature a wine program and farm-to-table concept centered around local and fresh ingredients.

Read More

Auberge Beach Residences and Spa Penthouse Sells for $9.5 Million: A Record Breaking Price for Fort Lauderdale Market

At $9.5 million, the final penthouse residence at Auberge Beach Residences and Spa in Fort Lauderdale has sold with a record-breaking price tag. The two-story, five-bedroom, six-and-a-half bathroom penthouse boasts 5,686 square feet, equaling $1,670 per square foot, the highest price per square foot ever sold in Fort Lauderdale and Broward County.

The sale beat out the previous record also set by Auberge Beach Residences & Spa in April 2016 for $8.9 million.

With more than 3,700 square feet of outdoor space, the penthouse will have a balcony wrapping around three sides of the unit, as well as floor-to-ceiling windows which showcase panoramic views of the Atlantic coastline, and a spiral staircase leading to the private rooftop terrace and pool.

Residents will also have access to first-class amenities including two gourmet restaurants, a world-class spa, a wine cellar, oceanfront swimming pools, the world’s best aboutGolf simulator, a state-of-the-art fitness center, among others.

Auberge Beach Residences has seen $75 million in purchases in the first half of 2017 alone. The North Tower, which was topped off last month, is expected to be complete in late 2017, with only three residences remaining. The South Tower is over 60 percent sold and is set to open in Spring 2018.

Read More

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Introduces Luxury Spa, Restaurant and Record-Breaking Penthouses

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa is taking luxury living to the next level in its exclusive new beachfront property in Fort Lauderdale, recently setting a new price record in the Broward County real estate market.

The first and only on-the-sand luxury residential project in Fort Lauderdale is highly anticipated by the community for its world-class restaurant and spa.

The project is the newest addition to the timeless portfolio of exceptional properties that together comprise The Auberge Collection. The Related Group, Fortune International Group and The Fairwinds Group, which make up the development team behind Auberge Beach Residences & Spa, have worked to make this vision become a reality, as completion is currently anticipated in mid-2018.

The development team recently announced the $9.5 million sale of the final residence within the penthouse collection, which tops the previous record-breaking penthouse sale at Auberge Beach Residences & Spa in April 2016 for $8.9 million.

An intimate, on-site event celebrating the topping off of the first of the two 17-story towers took place last month. The North Tower, which features 57 residences, is approaching sellout with only three residences remaining. The South Tower is over 60 percent sold and includes residences that range from 1,350 to 4,000 square feet, with pricing from $1.8 million to $5 million.

When completed, the two-tower 171-unit project will feature spacious floorplans, expansive oceanfront terraces, gourmet kitchens and property amenities and services that will include the brand’s world-class spa and restaurant – both of which will be open to the public, a Napa Valley wine cellar, 24/7 valet and concierge, a state-of- the-art fitness center overlooking the pool deck, the world’s best aboutGolf golf simulator, family-friendly children’s playroom and a clubroom with multimedia facilities, billiards and gaming tables.

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale recently unveiled never-before-seen renderings of the highly anticipated Auberge spa and restaurant designed by award-winning New York-based interior design studio Meyer Davis. The design of the spa embodies sophistication with sleek floor-to-ceiling windows and soft mood lighting for residents and guests to enjoy.

The restaurant, when completed, will feature a wine program and farm-to-table concept centered around local and fresh ingredients.

Read More

Fort Lauderdale penthouse sells for record $9.5M

An unidentified buyer agreed to pay a record $9.5 million for a penthouse at the Auberge Beach Residences and Spa condominium development in Fort Lauderdale.
The five-bedroom penthouse is the first condo unit in Broward County to sell for more than $9 million.

The old record for Broward County was set in April 2016 when a four-bedroom penthouse at Auberge sold for $8.9 million.

The recently sold five-bedroom penthouse is a two-story unit in the north tower of the two-tower, 171-unit Auberge development, which is expected to open by early 2018.
The developers of Auberge are Related Group, Fortune International Group and The Fairwinds Group.

The $9.5 million price of Broward’s priciest condo ever equates to $1,670 per square foot. The 5,686-square-foot penthouse will have a balcony wrapping around three sides of the unit, which will have more than 3,700 square feet of outdoor space, including a private roof deck equipped with a plunge pool.

All five bedrooms will have entries to the balcony and views of the Atlantic Ocean. Each bedroom also will have a full bathroom. The penthouse will have two other bathrooms.
Shared amenities at Auberge will include two restaurants, a spa, oceanfront swimming pools, a golf simulator and a gym.

In addition to the unidentified buyer, other future residents of Auberge include former Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino.

Patrick Campbell, vice president of Miami-based Related Group, told Mansion Global that the $9.5 million penthouse sale indicates strong demand for resort-style housing in Fort Lauderdale, where the luxury condo market has ballooned since 2012.

According to market research by Douglas Elliman and appraisal firm Samuel Miller, the median price of a high-end condo in Fort Lauderdale was $1.113 million in the first quarter after surpassing the $1 million mark in 2013.

Read More

North Tower Topped Off at Auberge Beach Residences and Spa

The North Tower at Auberge Beach Residences and Spa Fort Lauderdale was topped off last week. The highly anticipated project is selling out quickly, and only three residences remain in the North Tower. The South Tower is currently over 50-percent sold out. New renderings of the oceanfront development’s world-class spa and farm-to-table restaurant were also released, and the spaces look absolutely breathtaking!

Once complete, Auberge Beach Residences and Spa will be comprised of two towers located directly on the sand in beautiful Fort Lauderdale. The ultra-exclusive development will offer 171 condos, boasting oceanfront terraces, gourmet kitchens, private elevators and floor-to-ceiling glass. Select Auberge Beach condos will offer private pools on the wide balconies. All condominiums above the second floor will showcase unobstructed northern views of the coastline.

Amenities at Auberge Beach Fort Lauderdale include a world-class spa, multiple oceanfront swimming pools, a state-of-the-art fitness center and multiple restaurants. A beautiful beach club will be located on the 450 feet of pristine ocean and beach frontage.

Auberge Beach Residences and Spa is one of the most exciting residential projects to ever hit Fort Lauderdale Beach. The remaining residences are not expected to last long, and the building will sell out!

Read More

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale Unveils Restaurant and Spa Plans

When it opens next year, Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale—a 171-condominium project situated on 450 feet of beachfront abutting the Atlantic Ocean—will bring a new standard of living to Floridians. The residential property has tapped interior design firm Meyer Davis to create an elevated dining concept and spa that will be open to both residents and the public. Though names have yet to be announced for the restaurant and spa, some design details have officially emerged.

Inside the 10,000-square-foot spa, Meyer Davis has chosen floor-to-ceiling windows and mood lighting to set the tone. Oak flooring, terrazzo countertops, and teak wood slates converge to create a refined retreat, and blue marble finishes mirror the azure ocean. After being pampered to the nines at the full-service spa and salon, guests can relax in oceanfront cabanas. The wave-kissed shore beckons just beyond, inviting guests to unfurl umbrellas and sunbathe to their hearts’ content.

The upscale restaurant will feature a farm-to-table menu and sophisticated wine program. A glass-encased wine wall and gray tile floor lead the way into the main dining area, where floor-to-ceiling windows overlook the ocean. Reclaimed wood floors, hanging light fixtures, and Calacatta Gold marble give the space an airy aesthetic.

Two bars—one indoors, one just steps from the shore—serve as gathering places for groups of friends. With state-of-the-art amenities like these, it’s not hard to see why the project boasts record-breaking pre-construction sales.

Read More

Fortune International Group, Rialto Capital Management launch bridge lending firm, Vaster Capital

Fortune International Group and Rialto Capital Management launched a private bridge lending firm to fill what they see as a void in the marketplace, particularly for foreign buyers of Miami real estate, Edgardo Defortuna told The Real Deal.

Vaster Capital has been up and running for about two months with the goal of issuing at least $100 million in bridge loans a year, Defortuna said. “We’re obviously very, very involved in sales, especially preconstruction sales, and a lot of them are closing this year and next year. Many have been bought by foreign investors and individuals who want bridge loans for two to three years to take possession of the unit and decide what they want to do,” he added.

The target borrower is a foreign investor who was expecting to pay cash to close on their residential unit, or units, and is looking for an alternate to traditional financing due to a decline in their home country’s currency. Vaster’s core business will focus on residential loans, which is where Defortuna said the biggest need is.

“We saw a void in this market based on the fact that even though there are some players, they’re not institutional or sophisticated,” he said. “The demand is really strong because a great number of buildings are coming to close in 2017, 2018, 2019.”

Defortuna also feels “very comfortable we can dispose of the asset should that issue arise.”

The bridge lender is giving loans within 15 days that are typically between $600,000 to $700,000 and between 50 percent to 60 percent loan-to-value. Interest rates are between 8 percent and 9 percent. Eventually it plans to expand geographically.

Vaster also formed a joint venture with the Related Group for Vaster Capital II to provide financing to buyers at Related projects represented by Fortune, including Paraiso Bay and Brickell Heights.

Realto, a Miami-based real estate investment and asset management firm, is a subsidiary of Lennar Corp. Fortune’s development projects include Jade Signature and the Ritz-Carlton-Residences, Sunny Isles Beach.

Read More

As Miami Developments Take a Breather, New Projects Are Rising in Nearby Cities

Both developers and buyers are taking a wait-and-see approach to the launch of new developments in Miami.

For developments that have broken ground and are moving forward, between 60% and 100% of the units have been sold, said Edgardo Defortuna, president and CEO of Fortune International Group, a real estate development, sales and brokerage firm founded by Defortuna.

At his company’s 192-unit Jade Signature development in Sunny Isles Beach, which is directly north of Miami Beach, “we sold $51 million worth of units in the first quarter,” Mr. Defortuna said. The building, which launched sales in 2013, is “95% or 96% sold out.”

But for Miami projects that have launched sales but not broken ground, “sales are slow, with few exceptions,” he said.

“They’re waiting for the rescue boat to come in and lift them out of the water,” Mr. Defortuna said.

Carlos Rosso, president of condo development at The Related Group, said that sales have slowed compared to six months to a year ago. “We were selling 30 units per week. Now we’re selling five, six or seven per week, but we’re still selling,” he said. “Things are moving.”

Both Messrs. Rossos and Defortuna said, however, that the nearby Fort Lauderdale market has become increasingly attractive.

“We’ve been surprised by the numbers we’re getting,” Mr. Defortuna said. “The Fort Lauderdale absorption rates are as good as anything in Sunny Isles.”

Fortune International and The Related Group are teaming up to build Auberge Beach Residences & Spa right on the beach in Fort Lauderdale. The first tower is 95% sold and Tower 2 is 60% sold, Mr. Defortuna said.

“The Fort Lauderdale airport is very convenient for people from New York” and other U.S. cities,“ he said.

Fort Lauderdale is also significantly less expensive than Miami. “It’s one-third the price of South Beach,” Mr. Rosso estimated.

In Fort Lauderdale, 80% to 85% of pre-construction sales have been to U.S. buyers, compared to 15% nondomestic, Mr. Defortuna said. In Miami, that flips to 75% to 80% foreign sales and around 20% domestic.

And that largely international market that’s key for Miami has been hurt by a strong dollar.

“We need the dollar to lower itself a bit compared to other currencies around the world,” Mr. Rosso said.

But there’s hope. Mr. Defortuna mentioned Argentina and Brazil as two countries whose buyers seem to be coming back. “In Brazil, there is the perception that the Miami market is really attractive and it’s time to get back in.”

He expects the Asian market to improve next year, too, with the addition of direct flights from select Asian cities to Miami.

So far this year, Turkish buyers are a visible presence in the Miami real estate market since direct flights were launched late last year from Istanbul to Miami, Mr. Defortuna said. “If you have direct flights, then you have the lifestyle and the convenience–that makes the decision to buy much easier.”

Read More

The Miami Real Estate Show Interviews Edgardo Defortuna, President & CEO Of Fortune International Group

2017 will be a great year for The Miami Real Estate Show. We look forward to bringing you even bigger names in real estate with the re-vamped web series hosted by The Montiel Organization’s founder Orlando Montiel.

The Miami Real Estate Show is dedicated to bringing you the truth behind the success of the most prominent real estate celebrities including Ugo Colombo, Carlos Rosso , Nitin Motwani, Craig Studnicky, Jay Parker, Alicia Cervera Lamadrid, Alicia Cervera Sr, Jeff Morr, Eloy Carmenate, Esther Percal, Nancy Batchelor, and Philip Spiegelman, among others.

Introducing 2017’s first episode of The Miami Real Estate Show featuring host Orlando Montiel and Edgardo Defortuna, President, CEO & Founder of Fortune International Group. Mr. Defortuna achieved the ultimate success in real estate; escalating from an agent, to a mega-broker, and now to one of South Florida’s most legendary developers, and has built an empire here.

It all began when he immigrated to Miami in late 1970 accompanying his sister on her medical internship at the order of their father. A move that may have been happenstance at the time, turned into one that would have an immensely purposeful impact on the area, shaping the local real estate landscape into what it is today.

Mr. Defortuna played a pioneering role in developing some of the most luxurious buildings in South Florida including Jade Signature, Hyde Resort & Residences, Auberge Beach Residences & Spa, Ritz-Carlton Residences, and many more.

The following are some of Defortuna’s professional accomplishments:

• Recognized as a household name for having made a significant contribution to the internalization of Miami.
• CEO and Founder of one of the top Real Estate Development companies that generates about $1 billion annually in sales alone.
• Member of the Mayor of Miami’s International Council and Director of the Argentine-U. S. Chamber of Commerce.
During this interview, you will learn:
• Growing Development Areas in Miami.
• How to Identify Your Competitive Advantage.
• Time & Effort: Key in this industry.
• How to Transition from Broker to Developer.
• The Importance of Understanding your Customer’s Needs.
Great takeaways from this interview:
• “There’s no replacement for effort; you can be as intelligent as you can be but if you don’t put in the hours into the chair or in front of the desk, the chances to be successful are relatively small.”
• “Always analyze and make sure you understand the level of downsizing & put a limit to it before making a decision.”
• “Identify what works for you, identify what your particular strengths are and focus on potentiating them.”

Featured development: Jade Signature

Read More

New luxury apartments rise in growing Fort Lauderdale

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The proliferation of high-rise buildings with high-design architecture and resort-style amenities in South Florida has been heading north. While in Miami-Dade County foreign buyers dominate the condo-flipping mania, Broward County offers more stability.

Fort Lauderdale’s skyline is changing, but at a slower pace than Miami’s. Patrick Campbell, a vice president at the Related Group, said the majority of the buyers in Fort Lauderdale are end users from South Florida who are transitioning into the next stage of their lives.

“We see that the demographic is largely empty nesters, professionals and second-home buyers with ties to the community,” Campbell said.

Fort Lauderdale’s residential real estate inventory is growing in both the Las Olas and beachfront areas. Despite the rising real estate prices, the city’s luxury units remain a bargain compared to those in Miami Beach, Bal Harbour, Sunrise and downtown Miami.

Campbell said the Auberge Beach Residences and Spa is $1,300 per square foot versus $3,000 per square foot in Miami Beach. The 171-unit oceanfront two-tower project is breaking records in Broward County. In April, the developers announced a penthouse in the South Tower sold for $8.9 million.

Ron Drew, of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance, attributes the rising condo market to the growing job market. Drew said that from June 2014 to March 2017, there were 77,600 jobs added in Broward County. And more jobs are coming.

Companies including Magic Leap in Plantation, Hotwire Communications in Fort Lauderdale and Ecolab in Miramar have announced expansions in the last two years. And Fort Lauderdale Las Olas will soon have a supply of condos for young professionals who are not ready to buy real estate, but are ready for luxury living.

The Related Group will complete Fort Lauderdale’s tallest building this summer. The 45-story Icon Las Olas will stand higher than the 42-story Las Olas River House, built in 2004. Liz Caldwell, an agent for Premier Estate Properties, said there is a demand for the units.

In partnership with Rabina Properties and Perella Weinberg Partners, the Icon Las Olas will have 272 units for rent from $2,500 to $7,000 a month, starting in June. Residents will have access to a spa, concierge, a wine room, a movie room, a gym and two pools.

“Why buy when you can rent? It’s all about the millennials,” Caldwell said. “They want the experience of living in downtown without the permanence and they don’t mind living from paycheck to paycheck.”

The Icon Las Olas is just the beginning. There are more high-rise buildings lining along the Tarpon River. The other projects are The 42-story Residences of Las Olas, the 25-story 4 West Las Olas, the 45-story 100 Las Olas and the 45-story Las Olas Riverfront Tower 1 and 28-story Tower 2.

The Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance projects 7.7 percent population growth by 2021. Jessica Savage, of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Conventions and Visitor Bureau, said to cater to the growing population the city also has developed a more dynamic dining and restaurant scene that is attracting well-known chefs, such as Geoffrey Zakarian.

Aside from the new restaurants, there are also new brewpubs, coffee shops and ale houses that have “popped up over the past few years,” Savage said.

The growth is not limited to the condo market. The hospitality industry is also getting an upgrade with the Hyde Resorts and Residences, Ocean Resort Residences at Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, the Four Seasons Private Residences Fort Lauderdale and the W Fort Lauderdale.

“The destination is attracting a more affluent demographic and developing a cooler vibe,” Savage said.

Read More

Glasshaus Coconut Grove is Miami’s sexiest new boutique condo

23 contemporary residences, starting at $595,000

There’s no direct view of Biscayne Bay but the glassy and dazzling GlassHaus in Coconut Grove has certainly joined the conversation of Miami’s most alluring condo projects if the real thing ends up looking anything like the renderings.

Set to open its on-site sales center to the public in early June, the five-story boutique condo will rise at 3161 Center Street while offering 23 contemporary residences priced from $595,000 to $1.2 million (starting around $575 per square foot).

The development team is comprised of GD.8 and Element Development LLC, with the Bauhaus-inspired design spearheaded by Varabyeu Partners, an architecture and design firm with offices in Coral Gables and Minsk.

The exquisite lobby will be outfitted with textured stone, polished wood, burnished steel and panoramic glass.

Residences will range in size from 1,080 to 2,380 square feet, offered in one, two, and three bedrooms. The standard units will feature 11-foot finished ceilings; floor-to-ceiling windows; kitchens equipped with Italkraft cabinetry and stone countertops; and a choice of porcelain, wood or tile flooring throughout the interior.

Parking will be underground with amenities including a detached fitness center; electric bicycles for owner use; Zen garden; and a resort-style rooftop deck with a pool, cabanas, summer kitchen, and lounge. Every GlassHaus owner will also be a member of the nearby Coconut Grove Sailing Club.

Fortune International is handling sales.

Read More

‘Designer Wellness’ Is Newest Status Symbol for Luxury Buyers

To appeal to wealthy buyers who want healthy lifestyles, luxury real estate developers in New York, Los Angeles and Miami are meticulously curating holistic wellness amenities—getting starchitects, fitness gurus and branded spa chains involved.

At The Greenwich Lane, a residential complex built on the former site of St. Vincent’s Medical Center in the West Village, a full floor of fitness amenities is available to all residents of the complex’s five condominiums and five townhouses, who began moving in in 2015.

The developers signed The Wright Fit to manage their state-of-the-art fitness center, which includes two training studios, a golf simulator, a swimming pool, spa and treatment room. The company is known for functional performance training, an exercise philosophy that emphasizes making body movements more functional and efficient.

Working with The Wright Fit, interior designer Thomas O’Brien of Aero Studios curated the swimming pool. The 82-foot pool features a vaulted, glass mosaic ceiling, translucent glass walls and a separate hot tub.

“The swimming pool is pivotal to us. We have at least two sales done just because of it,” said Michael Rudin, vice president of Rudin Management Company, which has developed The Greenwich Lane along with Global Holdings.

In fact, The Greenwich Lane is only one of the latest New York condominiums to adopt The Wright Fit brand to attract health-conscious buyers.

The company, founded by celebrity trainer Jay Wright in 2007, made its residential building debut at 15 Central Park West and was considered to have contributed to the building’s appeal when it opened in 2008. Now The Wright Fit has a client list that features some of the city’s toniest buildings, including 432 Park Avenue, 56 Leonard, 50 United Nations Plaza and 443 Greenwich.

The Wright Fit has also expanded to the West Coast. Ten Thousand, a new residential building in Los Angeles, features a cantilevered, glass-enclosed Wright Fit-branded fitness center, overlooking Beverly Hills and Downtown Los Angeles. Its Wellness and Performance Program, led by fitness veteran, Lakei Herman, is designed to provide residents with personal training, injury prevention and rehabilitation, nutritional guidance, as well as stress and time management.

In San Francisco, Mr. Wright designed the 7,000-square-foot fitness center at LUMINA, a 656-unit luxury tower soaring above San Francisco Bay. The fitness center is equipped with both yoga and high impact aerobics studios, a 70-foot lap pool and a 20-foot rock climbing wall. The building itself, completed in 2016, is designed by world-renowned Bernardo Fort-Brescia of Arquitectonica in collaboration with Heller Manus, a San Francisco-based architecture firm that has a wide-range of residential portfolio both in the U.S. and China.

In striking a balance between exercise and relaxation, Miami luxury developers have invested in spas and water features. At Missoni Baia, a waterfront luxury condo tower in the Edgewater neighborhood slated for completion in summer 2020, the residents-only spa, comprising of 2,825 square feet, will be one of the largest spas in Miami. It’s conceived by the designers of Aman Spas, with interiors by New York-based Paris Forino.

Fitness amenities include a 1,700-square-foot gym with 180-degree view of Biscayne Bay views, an Olympic-sized lap pool and an elevated tennis court.

Another new luxury condominium in Miami’s Bal Harbour neighborhood, Oceana Bal Harbour, boasts a world-class spa operated by the WTS International. The members-only spa includes a sauna and steam room, as well as a meditation pavilion for yoga and pilates classes. There is a sparkling pool and a state-of-the-art fitness center overlooking the oceanic horizon through its floor-to-ceiling glass windows.

The 240-unit tower also offers residents a private restaurant, Ballerina, run by Philadelphia-based Starr Catering, which will operate in synergy with the spa by offering “eating-conscious” and farm-to-table selections.

And back in New York, 50 West, a new 64-story condominium in the heart of Downtown Manhattan, which opened earlier this year, has hired husband-and-wife duo Michael and Thea Wittich, fitness gurus and founders of WittichFit, to assemble and staff its fitness amenities.

Designed by architect Helmut Jahn and interior designer Thomas Juul-Hansen, the tower has four full floors dedicated to fitness and wellness, including state-of-the-art training facilities, spin and yoga studios, a golf simulator, a subterranean ‘Water Club’ equipped with a 60-foot lap pool, a hot tub, a sauna and steam room, spa and an entertainment floor.

“What’s going to set us apart is how the space is used,” Mrs. Wittich said. “We strive to provide a sense of community through a range of programs, including yoga for children or nutrition classes by local farmers.”

Read More

Haute Secrets: Edgardo Defortuna Shares His Guide to Miami

Founder and president of Fortune International Group, Edgardo Defortuna has become an esteemed leader in high-end luxury real estate in Miami, with global reach in Latin America and Europe. In 1998, alongside his wife, Ana Cristina, the couple launched their luxury-development arm shaping Miami’s landscape into what it is today — with breathtaking projects like The Ritz-Carlton Residences Sunny Isles Beach, Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale and Hyde Resort & Residences. Haute Living caught up with the real estate tycoon and uncovered some of his haute secrets to living in Miami.

Where were you born: Buenos Aires

How long in Miami: 32 Years

Neighborhood: Key Biscayne

Occupation: CEO

Favorite Restaurant: Cipriani

Best Sushi: Zuma

Best Italian: Caffe Abbracci

Best dessert: Tres Leches, Hillstone

Best place for a romantic date: My living room

Best Sunday brunch: Grand Bay Club at Key Biscayne

Best place for a power business meeting: Coya, Brickell

If you have out of town guests, which hotel would you recommend? 1 Hotel, South Beach

Favorite shopping venue/boutique: Bal Harbour Shops

Favorite place to buy jewelry/watches: Hublot

Best Spa: The Standard

Favorite Charity Event: United Cerebral Palsy, South Florida

Favorite Cultural Event: Art Basel

Favorite Cultural Institution: PAMM

Best Steakhouse: Capital Grille

Best Pizza: Puntino Pizzeria, Key Biscayne

Best Lunch: Baires Grill

Best Gym/Athletic Facility: Equinox

Best Massage: My wife

Best Limousine/Driving Service: Aventura Limousine

Best Museum/Exhibit: Julio Le Parc, PAMM

Describe your city in three words: It is hard to say in just three words, Miami is: Exciting, Vibrant, Current, Trendy, Modern, Smart

Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore: Vizcaya Museum & Gardens

All-around favorite spot in Miami: Key Biscayne

Best Aspect of Miami: Miami’s diversity and culture

Read More

Edgardo Defortuna Receives Haute Residence’s “Florida Titan of the Year” Award

The biggest developers and brokers in East Coast real estate joined Haute Residence, as it hosted its 2017 Luxury Real Estate Summit at New York City’s CORE: Club, on April 28, to discuss what’s next for the New York City and South Florida homebuyer.

With notable names, like Don Peebles, Ugo Colombo, and Senada Adzem, the event featured three panels––the NYC Titans of Business, Florida Titans of Business, and Power Brokers––moderated by Peter Grant of the Wall Street Journal, and Jennifer Gould Keil of the New York Post.

Beginning with the NYC Titans of Business, which included Bruce Eichner, Elie Hirschfeld, Billy Macklowe, Mitchell Moinian, Don Peebles, Michael Stern, the panelists discussed from where major capital has been coming in recent years, as well as the target markets for investors.

“Over the years, you’ve seen that maturation of the global markets and how the global markets have become one,” Macklowe said. “So, it’s really hard to pull New York out of that… we now stand as the safe haven capital market, globally. And you’ve seen such diversity and inflows of capital from all over the world… and that has yet to really pull back.”
The Power Brokers panel followed, with Senada Adzem, Noble Black, Stephen G. Kliegerman, Dolly Lenz, Adam Modlin, Lauren Muss, Neal Sroka, and Cody Vichinsky.

Commenting on what type of buyer has been investing in the New York City market, Adam Moldin said, “I’ve actually seen more recently that some of the most important buyers in the market are domestic buyers. That’s what I’m seeing as a trend¬: fewer of the foreigners at the high end of the market, and more domestically.”

Concluding the summit, the Florida Titans of Business––Louis Birdman, Ugo Colombo, Edgardo Defortuna, Shahab Karmely, and Dan Kodsi––spoke about their respective residential developments that are going up in and around Miami, as well as the current state of the market.

One Thousand Museum developer Louis Birdman highlighted the draw of the project: “We had an opportunity to acquire a site that was very sought-after… it was probably the single most important skyscraper site in downtown Miami because of its location… Because the units are so large, we’re attracting buyers who are coming from all parts of the world, and domestic, that would typically come to Miami to buy a big house on the water somewhere.”

Lastly, Defortuna recieved Haute Residence’s “Florida Titan of the Year” award.

Haute Residence’s most recent magazine issue, showcasing The Moinian Group’s Sky residential development, a design collaboration with New York Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony, as its cover story, was distributed at the event.

Read More

Related, Fortune Pay Off $102M Loan For Hyde Resort & Residences In Hollywood

The Related Group and Fortune International Group have paid off their $102 million loan for Hyde Resort & Residences in Hollywood, marking one of the first large construction loans to be repaid in Broward County this cycle.
BREDS II Loan Holdings, an affiliate of the Blackstone Group’s Real Estate Debt Strategies fund, provided the loan in 2014 – at a time when some banks were still reluctant to issue real estate debt. It was repaid about eight months ahead of its due date, Carlos Rosso, president of Related’s condo development division, told The Real Deal.

In December, Dezer Development announced it had paid off its $214 million construction loan for Porsche Design Tower in Sunny Isles Beach, which it secured from Wells Fargo in 2013.

Hyde, a $360 million condo and hotel development at 4111 South Ocean Drive, opened earlier this year with 40 condo units and 367 condo-hotel rooms, an Emena spa, and the Terrazas at Hyde Hollywood restaurant, pool bar and cafe. Prices ranged from $750,000 to $2 million.

Rosso expects to close out the project in the next 60 days. So far, about 206 units have closed to investors from Latin America, Europe, Turkey, Canada and the U.S. The units, part of a hotel rental program, provide income to their condo-hotel owners.

Records show a Fortune affiliate, led by Edgardo Defortuna, paid $23 million for the property in 2005, then Related paid $17 million for its interest in the site in 2013. Rosso said Related is “very bullish on the area. We still think there’s tremendous value in that location.”

The Miami-based developer said it’s making a combined $620 million investment in Hollywood Beach for Hyde Hollywood and Hyde Beach House, which launched sales in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Hyde Beach House, which is also being developed by 13th Floor Investments and Key International, is 70 percent sold, according to Related.

Other projects in the area include the $180 million condo-hotel Meliá Costa Hollywood Beach Resort and Sage Beach, which was completed in September.

Read More

Trump, The Russians, And The Future Of Ultra Luxury Real Estate

Whatever your political optics no one can avoid the word “Trump” these days. So amid all of the executive orders, cabinet hearings, and media ju-jitsu doesn’t anyone else find it surprising that we haven’t heard much about the segment of the economy closest to the new President’s heart: luxury real estate?

If the sparkling, new multi-million dollar Sunny Isles Ritz-Carlton Residences sales center just north of Miami Beach is any indication of what the “Trump Effect” means for international real estate investment in the U.S., it’s already giving it a nice tailwind. It’s also a telling symbol in some ways of what a Trump Presidency represents economically and globally from the outside in.

Even during the Great Recession and Trump v. Clinton, luxury American real estate never lost its appeal to high net worth international buyers, particularly from emerging economies like Turkey, Brazil, Russia, and China. The U.S. dollar and stock markets remain strong. The rule of law still prevails. And despite recent financial disclosure requirements for residential purchases over $5 million, the American pied-a-terre is still one of the world’s safest (and most enjoyable) financial investments. Miami and Beverly Hills are also a lot more climatologically hospitable than Europe in the winter (sorry London).

That this inflow of high net worth international buyers—and capital—into the U.S. might increase with real estate mogul-cum-President Trump now in office has many developers cautiously buzzing.
“We weren’t hedging our bets on the election outcome,” says Edgardo Defortuna, President and CEO of the global real estate development company Fortune International Group, which is spearheading the Sunny Isles’ Ritz-Carlton Residences. “But on a real estate basis a lot of us (developers) are very happy. If Trump wants to give the economy a jump start through infrastructure and taxes and making investment in the U.S. more attractive it’s definitely going to have a positive impact on the real estate market so from that point of view I’m very optimistic.”

It’s actually a bit of surprise that some investors and developers are getting bullish on the U.S. luxury real estate market so soon after an election, particularly in South Florida.

Over the past year luxury properties in Miami-Dade County have taken a beating. Zika, a strong dollar, continuing economic instability in parts of Latin America, and white hot over-supply since the Great Recession have all combined to pummel luxury prices and sales down by almost 20% year over year since 2015. And despite the Dow climbing towards 21,000, uncertainty remains with respect to President Trump’s upcoming policy directives on taxes, deregulation, the EPA, and immigration—all of which have a direct impact on the ebb and flow of international real estate dollars.

So why is Defortuna, who recently secured another $163 million in construction financing for his 52-story sail-shaped beachfront tower, so optimistic?

The Bear (Market) Is Back

For starters, say many people on the ground in Miami—the “Russians”.

Notwithstanding the recent resignation of General Flynn as National Security Advisor over his conversations with the Russian ambassador, the mere possibility of a Trump “reset” with Putin and a diplomatic thaw appears to be breathing oxygen back into the Russian appetite for American real estate. In the months leading up to the 2016 U.S. Presidential election—just as the Defortuna was breaking ground on his Ritz-Carlton Residences project— the number of Russian buyers searching for luxury properties in Miami-Dade County surged to its highest level since 2013.

High net worth Russian buyers largely went soft during the Obama administration. So the current Russian reset has potentially far reaching implications for U.S. foreign investment, the domestic construction economy, and the continued growth of speculative real estate markets in coastal cities like Miami, New York, and Los Angeles where the most expensive buildings are often occupied by up to 70% in-absentia, foreign “residents”.

“Just the possibility of Trump becoming President was a catalyst to what you’re seeing happening now in Miami real estate when it comes to Russian buyers,” says John Harris, Managing Partner and Chief Wealth Advisor for Coral Gables Trust which represents dozens of high net worth international clients, including many Russians.

“Trump early on back in the 1980s made entrees into the Russian market in terms of soliciting buyers for his condominium buildings. Those connections with very high net worth Russians haven’t gone away. Now he’s the President of the United States. So if you’re an affluent Russian with the ability to invest somewhere in the $1 million to $10 million price range in a luxury property outside of Russia, there’s a feeling in general that his administration is going to be favorable to real estate interests.”

Say Hello To My “Little Moscow”

Few places is this on display more overtly than Sunny Isles, Florida known since the 1990s as Miami’s “Little Moscow” when the first wave of wealthy Russians started snatching up waterfront condominiums here. In many restaurants and bars you’ll hear more Russian than English and find Borscht, Chicken Kiev, and Siberian Pelmeni on the menu above the spiny lobster. There are two Trump branded developments in Sunny Isles within blocks of one another.

It’s difficult to say how much politics—or Russia—is involved in Sunny Isles’ currently screaming hot luxury real estate market. Many of the current projects wrapping up or breaking ground, including the Muse Residences, Turnberry Ocean Club Residences, and the Porsche Design Tower, were on the boards long before Trump contemplated a Presidential run. But everyone locally seems to think that Trump’s possible rapprochement with Putin—and the potential relaxing of economic sanctions with Russia—will only add more heat to the market.

Ironically, courting Russian buyers wasn’t part of Defortuna’s development calculus. Because it didn’t have to be. He has the best piece of the property on Sunny Isles’ beach—the first building north of Bal Harbour with protected land and waterfront stretching almost two miles to the south. His brand partnership with Ritz-Carlton excluding a transient hotel component also ensures that his residents get the ultimate hospitality experience without the constant traffic and having to wonder who their neighbors are every weekend—a rarity in some parts of Miami these days.

But a potential resurgence of high net worth Russian buyers into Miami doesn’t hurt, Defortuna says.

Part of the rosy Russian forecast for American luxury real estate is purely economic. After years of enduring a weak rubble, sluggish growth, and recent financial sanctions, Russians’ purchasing power is coming back.

“Russia was turning the corner in many ways economically even before the election and the possibility of relaxing sanctions was even theoretically put on the table,” Harris explains. “Russian GDP is forecast to grow by 1.3% in 2017 and 1.8% in 2018. That’s a lot faster than most other countries who have traditionally invested in U.S. real estate so there are going to be a lot of developers especially given the Trump Presidency who will be looking hard at the Russian market and Russian buyers on pure economic terms since many Latin American countries are still struggling.”

The other part of the Russian real estate resurgence never left, says Harris. “Russians just like the culture in Miami. The beaches, the high-end shops, South Beach, Bal Harbor, the gourmet restaurants, that’s all appealing to them in a quasi-European kind of way so beyond just the financial stability of the investment in real estate here, Russians like the lifestyle. I’d expect the ‘Russian factor’ to have a significant impact on Miami real estate for a while as well as places like LA and New York.”

Defortuna agrees. While he’s wary that Trump’s stance on immigration could scare away some potential buyers, particularly from Mexico and the Middle East, he also knows that the potential Russian offset could be key to selling his building out.
“The Russian factor is very real,” says Defortuna, who works with a global network of brokers to market his properties specifically to Russian buyers among others. “Especially in Sunny Isles which was very attractive to Russians in the previous cycle. The past administration wasn’t very favorable to people from Russia. But with a better investment climate, better access to the U.S., and a growing economy that could all change very quickly.”

You Can’t Put A Price On Privacy

The potential Russian reinvigoration of the U.S. real estate market also points to broader trends that can be expected from the Trump Administration, say many investment and tax experts.

“A number of factors are driving non-resident, international buyers to continue investing in U.S. real estate,” says Bill Rohrer, an international tax partner at Duane Morris LLP, whose practice includes planning for inbound foreign U.S. investment. “Some of the increase in interest you’re seeing right now is more ‘expectation’ than anything else. We have deregulation taking place, we have a commitment for more infrastructure, and because of the possible reduction of individual tax rates and the repeal of the estate tax a lot of wealthy non-residents are going to be interested in moving permanently to the U.S., bringing their families here, and becoming residents. As much as Trump may be anti-immigration, I don’t think he’s going to be anti-immigration of the wealthy. This is all going to encourage real estate investment especially in the coastal cities like Miami, New York, and Los Angeles.”

While this is good news for developers and cities that would love the extra property tax revenue, it revives a long-standing concern about where all that international money is coming from—especially when it comes to Russia.

That some of Russia’s money invested in U.S. real estate may not have originated from the purest sources has never been in doubt. But Rohrer is quick to point out that, while tax evasion and dirty money are real issues, most international buyers investing in a second, third, or fourth residence in the U.S. are looking for the “privacy premium” above all else.

“In many countries no matter how much you’re worth,” says Rohrer, “You’re on a roller coaster when it comes to the domestic investment economy. But it’s often the security concerns that are first and foremost for (my clients). Kidnapping and extortion are still very real issues in a lot of Latin American and other countries. So when many international buyers are looking for ‘privacy’ it’s not that they’re looking to hide anything or avoid paying taxes. It’s about their family’s safety because once the government knows what you have in some countries you never know where that information goes or how it’s going to be used.”

So what’s the scorecard so far on President Trump when it comes to luxury real estate? Apolitical and optimistic, says Rohrer, noting that a growing economy for any reason is something that all Americans should be happy about. All buildings create jobs.

“Most people outside of the U.S. are betting that Trump won’t be self-destructive, that he’ll be more methodical—not necessarily in what he says—but in what he does,” Rohrer speculates. “The cabinet members he’s selected all know about wealth creation, about creating the environment for investment. He’s surrounded himself with smart people. And investors are showing that they’re generally feeling good about that, particularly in the real estate markets.”

Regardless of what the Russians do, Defortuna’s Ritz-Carlton Sunny Isles Residences will likely sell out within the next few months. It’s already 65% pre-sold, including three full floor penthouses on the 48th, 51st, and 52nd floors which have already gone under contract for $8.9 million, $21 million, and $16.5 million respectively.

Meanwhile anyone who wants to give President Trump any credit for the cautiously improving luxury real estate market is probably doing it in private.

Read More

Why Miami Luxury Developers Are Targeting Toronto Buyers

Wealthy Canadians love Florida luxury real estate, but have been largely ignored by Sunshine State developers and brokers. A new JV between Toronto’s Milborne Group and Miami-based Pordes Residential is aiming to change that.

The two brokerages have joined forces to attract high-end Canadian purchasers to Florida projects, starting with two ultra-luxe Miami offerings: The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach — developed by Fortune International Group and Château Group (whose principals are pictured above) — and Fendi Château Residences, by Château Group. “Canada’s been overlooked in marketing efforts from sales groups like ours,” said Pordes CEO Mark Pordes, in town last week to unveil the partnership. “We keep hearing about Canadians buying in Florida, yet no one has been coming up here and putting forth any real effort.”

Business has been booming in Miami, but the market has been “heavily weighted with South American buyers,” Pordes said. He’s known Hunter Milborne, whose firm is Toronto’s top condo brokerage, for years and tried to make an alliance before. “But it was difficult.” Milborne’s firm has worked on 700 developments and has a 20% market share of all new condos sold in the GTA, including 5,200 units in 2016. Recently, Milborne came south looking to purchase a Florida property. He ended up buying a suite at the Ritz-Carlton, and along the way forged an alliance with Pordes’ team to convince other Canadians to follow suit.

The Ritz-Carlton Residences — now under construction — will be 52 stories with a beach restaurant, two pools, kids club, spa and fitness centre, but no hotel. Fendi Chateau Residences (above), a 12-story beachfront boutique project near Bal Harbour, has 57 residences (plus a pool whose bottom rises up to become a dance floor). The robust Canadian market is ripe for Florida developers to court, said Pordes’ vice president Adam Kaufman. Canada overtook longtime leader Colombia to become the top international country using MiamiRE.com, according to Kaufman, and Canadians represent 32% of all foreign buyers in Florida.

Pordes’ group plans to be a constant presence here in coming years, opening a dedicated Toronto office, expanding the portfolio of projects for sale, and bringing on board more local sales agents. “Toronto brokers will know about us,” he said. “The ones who are smart are going to say, ‘How do I sign up to be a part of your network?’ [Having access to Miami luxury listings] gives them a certain status.” Canadians are natural buyers of Florida real estate, and Pordes is confident teaming up with Milborne — whose local connections and influence are unparalleled — will yield lucrative results. “We think we’ll have a good capture rate. We’re feeling very positive.”

Read More

Auberge Beach Fort Lauderdale approaches sellout in north tower

Auberge Beach Residences & Spa Fort Lauderdale is approaching a sellout in its North Tower while announcing $54 million in sales over the last 45 days for the two-tower luxury oceanfront development.

The North Tower, which is expected to be completed this year and will feature a Michelin-starred restaurant, is 90 percent sold. The South Tower, along with its full-service spa, is 45 percent sold and is expected to be delivered in 2018.

A penthouse sold last Spring for just under $9 million. Totaling 171 units, the project is a collaboration between The Related Group, Fortune International Group, and Fairwinds Group.

Miami Dolphins legend Dan Marino and The Related Group CEO Jorge Pérez are among the notable buyers.

Another Auberge-branded project is in the pipeline in Miami, but isn’t experiencing quite the same level of success amid a slowing market. It was announced last summer construction could be on hold until late 2018.

Read More

Fortune hires Jim Cohen to lead new development sales

Edgardo Defortuna’s Fortune International Group brought on Jim Cohen to lead all development sales, replacing a role previously filled by Andres Asion, as the firm prepares to launch several new projects this year.

Cohen was brought on at the start of 2017 as senior vice president of development sales, he told The Real Deal. He previously handled sales for the Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences in Fort Lauderdale, and before that the St. Regis Hotel and Residences in Bal Harbour. Cohen also worked for Turnberry Associates for 17 years.

At Fortune, he’s now leading sales for the company’s nearly $9 billion portfolio of new development sales, which includes projects like Naranza at Edgwater and Jade Signature. This year, Fortune’s sales and marketing arm will launch four third-party projects within the next two months, in areas like Wynwood, Coconut Grove, Miami Beach and the Miami River. The developer may also launch a project of its own by the end of the year depending on market conditions, Defortuna said.

Asion, who previously handled Fortune’s new development sales, left the company at the end of July to return to his company Miami Real Estate Group to capitalize on the condo market slowdown, and branch out beyond new development sales. Around the same time, Fortune brought on Susie Glass from Douglas Elliman as vice president of marketing to replace Andrea Greenberg’s role.

Preconstruction sales have remained stagnant in recent months, but Defortuna said the slowdown didn’t affect prices. He said there’s room for negotiating, but price cuts are not happening across the board. Both Defortuna and Cohen said sales will bounce back this year, but that they are up to 50 percent off the peak. “Sales are very good considering the conditions of the market,” Defortuna, Fortune’s president and CEO, told TRD. “We’re very optimistic that Miami is still very healthy and preparing for the next wave.”

The traffic of buyers at sales centers and contracts signed since the start of the new year are both up for Fortune, Cohen told TRD. “I think everyone is reloading their ammunition,” he said.

Read More

Flow rider: Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe designs a cascading East Coast condominium

For anyone who knows even a little about large-scale real estate development, long planning and gestation periods are par for the course. Sometimes – as in the case of Auberge Beach Residences & Spa – these delays can be serendipitous.

Comprised of two asymmetrical towers, one of which almost seems to cascade like white crystallised lava towards a huge glassed atrium, the condominium is handily located on a pristine, untouched five-acre ocean-front block of Fort Lauderdale Beach that was once the site of local landmark Ireland Inn.

‘When we first designed it as a mixed-use project,’ says Bruce Brosch of architects Nichols Brosch Wurst Wolfe, ‘we were pre-recession – the lower north tower was a four-star hotel, and the taller south tower was a condominium. Then the project went to sleep for several years. When it came back to life, the north tower was changed to a condominium as well.’

Its earlier incarnation as a hotel has endowed the Auberge with an unusual amount of generously proportioned public spaces and hotel-style amenities. The architects were also careful to position and orient the towers in a way that minimises the shadow-fall on the beach. ‘The closer to the north property line, the lower in scale the north tower gets,’ says Brosch.

Meanwhile, the project’s lead developer, The Related Group, was canny enough to tap hotel management company Auberge to manage and service the units and amenities, including the soigné spa.

The Meyer Davis-designed units themselves are palatial. Rooms with almost 10ft high ceilings open out onto oversized terraces, some of which feature private plunge pools, overlooking Fort Lauderdale and the Atlantic, while the kitchens are kitted out with Sub-Zero and Wolf appliances.

With prices starting at $1.5m and inching up towards the $10m mark, The Related Group is particularly bullish about the Auberge. ‘Nothing like this will ever be possible in Fort Lauderdale again,’ says its vice president, Patrick Campbell. A case of all’s well that ends well, it seems.

Read More

Edgardo Defortuna Honored As “Entrepreneur Of The Year” By The Argentine-American Chamber

Fortune International Group’s Edgardo Defortuna was honored as “Entrepreneur of the Year” at the Argentine-American Chamber Gala this past May.

Read More

Edgardo Defortuna Named “Power Leader In Real Estate”

South Florida’s Power Leaders in Real Estate truly have transformed the region’s landscape and skyline.

They are the developers who turned beachfronts and downtowns into iconic luxury or business destinations; the homebuilders who created neighborhoods out of vast swaths of open lands; the engineers, architects, and planners who maximize use of space; and the commercial builders and real estate brokers whose deals helped bring tenants and buyers to South Florida.

This year’s list features 17 executives who did not make last year’s class, but whose efforts to transform the region helped them rise to the top.
There are certainly more executives that likely could have qualified for this list, as South Florida is known for its thriving real estate industry. But we keep the list to 100 and attempt to “share the wealth” and feature as many new Power Leaders as we can.

Read More

Miami’s condo market continues to be global magnet

Miami’s condo market continues to be a strong magnet for international investment, but many brokers say the line between residents and investors may now be fuzzier than ever.

Christian Kawas, director of luxury sales at Douglas Elliman, says condo buyers today fit into one of three categories that are about equally populated.

“From what I see and what I’m hearing from developers,” he says, “about a third are buying for their own use as a permanent residence, a third for a second home and a third as an investment to rent out.

“Over the past two years rental inventory had been extremely low, so this is a very sought-after alternative.”

That three-way split applies to the Greater Miami market as a whole, Mr. Kawas says; specific areas vary widely. Investors are much more prevalent in downtown, Brickell and Miami Beach, he says, “but if you go to Doral or Coral Gables or Coconut Grove there’s a much higher percentage of end-users – probably more like 60% end-users and 20% for each of the other categories.”

Investors, Mr. Kawas says, can be further broken down into several different types.

“Some,” he says, “are buying in the lower to midrange price point – under $1 million – and are looking for a return of 5% to 7% or 8%. Then there are high-end buyers who are looking for more upside and capital preservation; they are happy with a lower return.”

A third trend that is gaining momentum, Mr. Kawas says, is “a marriage between second homes and investment. For example, 60% of units at 6080 Collins Ave., which launched in August, are reserved, most of them by investors.

“There’s a very high demand for properties with very liberal rental policies that will allow them to use it for a couple of months as a vacation home and then rent it out the rest of the year.”

Edgardo Defortuna, president of Fortune International Realty, says the trend for foreign investors to live in their units part of the year is particularly strong in Miami Beach, where he estimates about 65% of condos are owned by buyers from other countries.

“They will spend two or three months here,” he says, “or the family will move here while the man of the house moves back and forth. This is happening much more, especially with investors from countries such as Venezuela and Brazil.”

As much as 85% of buyers of new product in the central business district and along the Biscayne corridor are investors, Mr. Defortuna says, and will likely put their units on the rental market.

“Doral, which is heavily populated by Venezuelans, is an exception,” he says. “Most plan to stay here if they can figure out a way to become permanent residents.”

ISG principal Craig Studnicky calculates that countywide the ratio of absentee to permanent condo owners is about 40/60.

“It was higher 10 years ago,” he says, “but many now have their green cards and live here permanently or are early retirees from the New York area.”

While Brickell buyers are almost exclusively from South or Central America, Mr. Studnicky says, “moving north to Aventura and Sunny Isles there’s a bigger mix of people from the Northeast.”

Miami sees two annual influxes of snowbirds, he says – “those from the Northeast, who are here now, and South Americans who come here to escape their winter in June, July and August. So none of these buildings is ever fully occupied.”

EWM’s David Siddons cautions against too much generalization. While he says his impression is that the downtown-Brickell market where he is active is about 80% either snowbirds or investors renting their units out, “that said, a number of buildings such as The Palace, Santa Maria or buildings on Brickell Key are not anywhere near that. They are family-friendly buildings that attract primary residents.”

Like many other brokers, Mr. Siddons says, he is seeing more clients in the past three years who initially planned to live in their unit for only a couple of months a year but “end up using it a lot more than they ever anticipated.”

Read More

Fortune International and Savills announce partnership

Global RE firm has more than 600 offices and 30,000 employees
August 13, 2015 09:45AM

London-based Savills PLC and Miami-based Fortune International Group have formed an alliance, Fortune announced on Thursday.

“The Miami real estate market is now one of the strongest and most international residential markets in the world, making Fortune’s membership of an international network all the more relevant,” Rupert Sebag-Montefiore, head of global residential for Savills, said in a statement.

Savills, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange, has more than 600 offices and 30,000 employees in Europe, Asia Pacific, Africa, North and South America and the Middle East. Savills acquired Studley in 2014, which is now Savills Studley.

Fortune International Group and its brokerage, Fortune International Realty, have about 1,000 associates in 15 offices in Florida, as well as a presence in Latin America. Eighty percent of its sales in the last two years have been to foreign nationals from 82 countries, according to a press release.

“Fortune International Group’s expertise in working with international buyers and sellers makes our alliance with Savills an exciting one,” Fortune President and CEO Edgardo Defortuna said in the release. “Our strong US and Latin American presence complements Savills’ reach into other parts of the world.”

Fortune has worked as the exclusive sales and marketing firm for projects such as Jade Signature, the Ritz-Carlton Residences Sunny Isles Beach and Hyde Resort & Residences in Hollywood.

Read More

South Florida Business Journal

Edgardo Defortuna came to the U.S. from Argentina simply to master English. But he ended up altering Miami’s skyline with his own projects and by finding foreign investors for others.

Defortuna’s Fortune International Group, which has more than 1,000 real estate agents worldwide, specializes in generating a buzz for Miami projects overseas. The brokerage also has a commercial real estate division.

Fortune International’s development arm is involved in projects with a cost of about $2.5 billion, including Jade Signature in Sunny Isles Beach, Hyde Resort & Residences in Hollywood Beach, Auberge Beach Residences & Spa in Fort Lauderdale and the Ritz-Carlton Residences Sunny Isles Beach.

Defortuna said the strengthening of the U.S. dollar against many foreign currencies has caused a slowdown of buyers in parts of Miami, but there’s still tremendous opportunity for growth in the city, and real estate there is a good value compared to other major world cities.

What was your first job? I was an electrical design engineer for my father’s company in Argentina. … I always looked forwarded to studying engineering – until I figured out this business was a lot more profitable.

How did you end up in real estate? My dad started diversifying in real estate and had some assets in different classes in his company. I helped him manage those assets, and that really increased my desire and understanding for real estate development.

Why did you move to the U.S.? I came with my sister about 30-some years ago to do an English as a second language course for three months. I thought I would go back to Argentina. I loved the lifestyle so much, they are still waiting for me to come back. The safety, the level of professionalism, and both the physical and financial security was significantly better than in Argentina, and the parameters to do business in the U.S. were more stable.

How did you start your U.S. business? I started a real estate brokerage and management firm. That led to a big real estate brokerage and marketing organization that developed into the development side of the business.

Who helped you learn the ropes? My first big development was with a joint venture, Jade Residences at Brickell with Swire Properties. Steve Owens was very helpful and open to teaching me the key components of real estate development.

Who are your favorite architects? I am somewhat biased, but I love to work with Herzog & de Meuron, the Swiss architects who are designing Jade Signature for us. I am also a fan of Carlos Ott, who designed Jade Ocean, [and] Bernardo Fort-Brescia from Arquitectonica. He always comes up with creative solutions.

Where are your favorite vacation spots? I love skiing in Colorado in the winter. The south of France – pretty much anywhere there – is beautiful in the summer. I must have been Italian in my past life because anywhere in Italy is wonderful for me.

Which areas in South Florida do you expect to have the most growth in property values over the next five years? I’m a huge fan of Sunny Isles Beach because, if you compare that on the ocean to values a few minutes south in Bal Harbour or South Beach, then it has tremendous growth appreciation potential. Edgewater and the Biscayne corridor from 21st to 36th streets is attractive for waterfront property. Fort Lauderdale is coming up and will eventually mirror the values we are getting in Miami.

How has your firm been so successful at reaching international buyers? [With] a lot of work and consistency … attending events, seminars and fairs, and being [at the forefront] for over 25 years. It’s about relationships and people trusting you to provide the right products and services. In some cases, we have offices in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico. In others, our international team of 12 to 15 brokers from Miami travel all over the world. We have people who understand their idiosyncrasies and speak their language.

EDGARDO DEFORTUNA

Age: 58

Born: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Residence: Key Biscayne

Current position: President and CEO, Fortune International Group

Current boards: University of Miami, Argentine American Chamber of Commerce of Florida

Education: Electrical engineering degree, University of Argentina; M.B.A., University of Miami

Read More

Edgardo DeFortuna Awarded Residential Developer of the Year At The South Florida Real Estate Achiever & Leaders Awards

W. Allen Morris says Miami is not immune from another “boom and bust” cycle nor can it see valuations of property sustained but developers should feel positive about the future if they maintain memory, remain balanced and strive for adaptability.

Giving the keynote address for the fifth annual South Florida Real Estate Achiever and Leaders awards March 27 at Jungle Island, the chairman and CEO of the Allen Morris Co. said the real estate market is much like the stock market, where the only constant is change. Mr. Morris referenced a recent report about the condo market that indicates Miami is overbuilding.

“This was disturbing to a lot of people,” he said. “I think it’s a positive thing to say.”

Mr. Morris said only one-third of announced condo projects were built in the last cycle. “As developers with less experience pause for the condos to be absorbed, the more profitable the market will be,” he said. “We’ve laid a great foundation for positive change and growth in Miami and we’re looking at that in the residential market.”

Also positive is the condition of the retail market with a 3.5% vacancy and more projects coming online, Mr. Morris said, along with the office market, where he characterized the numbers as ones “we never thought we’d see” with 100 million square feet represented and 11.6% vacancies.

“I think about real estate as long-term and it’s very exciting in every sector long-term,” Mr. Morris said. What’s most important for Miami going forward, he said, is that its developers keep a memory of past cycles and “not get sucked in by the hype;” maintain a sense of balance, which will discourage gross overbuilding; and search for adaptability by continuing to learn as a community and as individuals.

“We must challenge our brand and adapt to a changing world,” Mr. Morris said.
Leadership awards were given to:

• Tere Blanca, founder, president and CEO of Blanca Commercial Real Estate Inc., for individual commercial real estate broker, with special recognition for Rodney C. Langer, president of Investors CRE Inc., in the same category.

• Robert Given’s CBRE South Florida multifamily brokers for commercial real estate broker team.

• Chad Carroll, executive vice president for Douglas Elliman, for residential real estate broker.

• Avra Jain, who has developed 26 boutique projects, for commercial developer.

• Edgardo DeFortuna, president and founder of Fortune International Group, for residential developer.

• Steven Cohen, executive vice president of commercial real estate at Sabadell United Bank, for real estate finance.

The chamber also recognized Stephen Owens, president of Swire Properties Inc., with a lifetime achievement award.

Finalists for the other awards were Christian Lee, CBRE Inc.; Jack Lowell and Adriana Rosillo, Pointe Group Advisors; Ike Ojala, Jorge Portela and Hermen Rodriguez, HFF LP; Anthony Askowitz, RE/MAX Advance Realty; Nancy Batchelor, EWM Realty International; Stiles Construction; The Plaza Group/The DevStar Group; The Related Group; Jim Dockerty, HFF LP; and Charles J. Foschini, CBRE Inc.

Read More

The Real Deal

Read More

South Florida Business Journal

Read More

International Real Estate

Read More

Edgardo Defortuna Presented With CEO Of The Year For The Miami-Dade SFBW Apogee Awards

2014 APOGEE AWARDS

Welcome to the inaugural Apogee Awards, a tribute to the success of twenty-four C-level executives throughout South Florida.

The region has many business awards programs, but this one is unique. Rather than having an awards program for each position, such as a CEO awards program one month and a CFO awards program another month, we thought it would be great to bring in the C-suite for our awards program, which was held on Nov. 6 at the Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale.

For example, this allowed the chairman of one company to meet and network with a chief marketing officer from another company or the top HR executive of one company to meet the CEO of another company.

We think there is a huge benefit in allowing these savvy, driven achievers to be able to share important experiences, challenges and lessons learned. South Florida has a broad geographic sweep, so it is rare to have this group all in one place at one time.

How did we get to twenty-four honorees? It’s simple math: Eight categories and one honoree in each county per category.

To get our nominations, we sent emails and did outreach throughout the South Florida business community. Our editorial staff did substantial research to help vet the quality and achievements of our honorees.

One of the things we like about the Apogee Awards is that it gives widespread public recognition to positions that often play key behind-the-scenes roles in the success of a business. Chief operating officers and chief marketing officers, for example, can be incredible drivers in the success of a business, but often are not highly visible public faces.

All of this would not be possible without our sponsors. Special thanks goes to presenting sponsor Mitch Kramer and his Octagon Family of Recruiting Companies (including its divisons of Octagon Technology Staffing and Octagon Professional Recruiting).

We would also like to thank our additional sponsors, BankUnited, Index and DataFile, Coral Gables Trust and the Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale.

Top Business Event

Eight honoree categories. Three counties. Twenty-four total honorees representing a “who’s who” of the most accomplished business executives in South Florida! What an exciting event – the 1st Annual Apogee Awards, presented by the Octagon Family of Recruiting Companies in partnership with Lifestyle Media Group and its magazine, South Florida Business & Wealth (SFBW). An octagon has eight sides to it and theApogee Awards is honoring eight in each county. What makes this event so special? Most of the events that I have gone to over the years in South Florida have recognized one category by itself and I think that is great, but when SFBW Chairman and CEO Gary Press and I sat down and started discussing what Corporate America is really about these days, we felt the collaboration of all the C-suite executives being recognized in one function was a powerful statement of how closely departments are working together these days and how critical it is for Finance, Information Technology, Human Resources, Operations, Marketing, along with the offices of the President, CEO, COO, and Chairman to work hand-in-hand to run their companies effectively and with the highest level of success.

The match between Lifestyle Media Group and the Octagon Family of Recruiting Companies (including its divisions Octagon Professional Recruiting and Octagon Technology Staffing) couldn’t make more sense to me. SFBW is an entrepreneurial magazine targeting the South Florida business community with a circulation unmatched by its competitors. Octagon is an entrepreneurial, explosively growing professional recruiting firm with offices in Fort Lauderdale, Miami-Dade, and Boca Raton. SFBW shares cutting-edge information on all types of interesting people and topics in the community. Octagon connects the top-talent in the marketplace with those same companies, specializing in the areas of accounting/finance, technology, human resources, and general search.

On behalf of the entire Octagon family, I am both proud and humbled to have attended this event with such a remarkable group of honorees, many of whom I already know. I would like to personally congratulate each and every honoree for being selected by the editorial panel of SFBW. 2014 marks the first of many years of partnership with SFBW and I want to thank the SFBW team for making this a wonderful experience for us!

Warm regards,

Mitch Kramer, CEO of Octagon

The Honorees are:

Chief Executive Officer
Dade County
Edgardo Defortuna
Fortune International Group

Edgardo Defortuna founded Fortune International Group in 1983 and has grown the company to become a full-service real estate firm recognized throughout South Florida, Latin America and Europe as a leader in high-end luxury real estate.

The firm has sold luxury condominiums across South Florida’s best neighborhoods, including Brickell Avenue, Key Biscayne, Coral Gables, Miami Beach, Aventura and Sunny Isles Beach. The firm has a presence in Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Mexico and his homeland, Argentina.

Defortuna is expanding Fortune’s presence into Europe, with initial focus on such markets as Spain, Britain, France and Russia. He is widely recognized for making a significant contribution to the internationalization of Miami and its reputation as a global business, trade and vacation hub.

Defortuna is a member of the Mayor of Miami’s International Council and serves as president of the Argentine-U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Miami.

Read More

Forbes Magazine

Read More

La Nacion

Read More

Executive Magazine

Read More

Dujour Magazine

Read More

The Real Deal

Read More

Miami Today – Residential Real Estate

Read More

South Florida Business Journal

Read More

South Florida Business Journal – Heavy Hitters

Read More

Florida International Magazine – Power Players

Read More

Miami Herald.com

Read More

Brickell Magazine

Read More

South Florida Business Journal

Read More

Miami Agent

Read More

Nexos

Read More

Poder – 23 under 40

Read More

Key Biscayne Magazine

Read More

Luxury Condo Living

Read More

Ocean Drive

Read More

Diaro Las Americas

Read More