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Craig Robins’ Dacra Buys Miami Design District Portfolio For New Mixed-Use Dev

Craig Robins has expanded his Design District fiefdom in Miami, buying a large chunk of the neighborhood that he helped make famous, the development’s owning entity, Miami Design District Associates.

Robins’ firm Dacra, together with several partners, bought a 15-building portfolio along NE 39th Street for nearly $200 million in a deal that closed December 22, according to people familiar with the transaction.

The sellers, Miami Beach-based Comras Company and Apollo Global Management‘s real estate trust, had signed furniture store Restoration Hardware to a portion of the portfolio last year, but the deal resulted in a lawsuit a year later and a store never opened.

Apollo, which originally provided a $220 million loan for the acquisition of the property, will provide seller financing in the deal, sources said. Apollo took over the property from the original owners, RedSky and JZ Capital, last year.

During an earning call this November, Stuart Rothstein, CEO of Apollo Commercial Real Estate Finance, said the trust was selling the portfolio, though he did not name the buyers.

The partners in the deal include Qatari firm Constellation Hotels Holding, developer Nadim Ashi’s Fort Partners, New York-based private equity firm Raycliff CapitalThe Real Deal first reported.

Most of the properties sit in an underdeveloped section of the neighborhood, located on the west end along Northeast 39th and 40th Streets from North Miami Avenue to Northeast First Avenue. The joint venture plans to build a mixed-use development that will be announced next year, said a spokesperson for Miami Design District Associates.

The deal gives Miami Design District Associates — a partnership between Craig Robins, L Catterton and Brookfield Properties — almost complete control of the district, which has become a mecca for luxury shopping in Miami, home to ChanelLouis Vuitton, and Gucci, among others.

 

Source:  Commercial Observer

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Big Changes In Little Haiti: Redevelopment Rises In Emerging Neighborhood

Neil Fairman, founder and chairman of Plaza Equity Partners, was once skeptical about building anything in Miami’s Little Haiti or Little River. Most of his company’s projects were luxury waterfront high-rises in places such as Miami’s Edgewater, South Beach, North Miami Beach and Hollywood.

But Fairman’s friend, Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberté, wanted him to see some properties being assembled near 61st Street and Northeast Second Avenue in Little Haiti.

After touring the area, Fairman began to view it as ripe for opportunity – and he wanted in.

Since 2017, Fairman’s Plaza Equity Partners has been the managing developer of the Magic City Innovation District, an 18-acre territory that includes a former trailer park and dozens of warehouses. In the next few years, there will likely be 8.2 million square feet of apartments, hotels, offices, retail and exhibition space built there.

The warehouses have been converted into over 200,000 square feet of retail and office space that is now 90% leased, Fairman said.

Other investors and developers have followed suit, investing millions of dollars into the Little Haiti-Little River area, two overlapping neighborhoods bounded by Interstate 95, 54th Street, Northeast Fourth Court and the Little River canal.

Industry insiders say there are plenty of opportunities for more stakeholders to build projects there.

 

Source:  SFBJ

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Pop-up Stores Are Gaining Popularity And Are Here To Stay, Experts Say. Here’s Why.

For those who thought the pop-up trend was coming to a close, guess again. Pop-up stores are proliferating in cities across the country, including Miami.

The most popular local pop-up hubs: the Design District, Lincoln Road and Wynwood.

That news comes from a December report Pop-up-a-Palooza! published by Cushman & Wakefield in December. The report studied digital brands that opened for the first time in a bricks-and-mortar space during Halloween, the busiest time of year for pop-ups. In 2019, about 2,500 temporary Halloween stores opened across the country — an 80% increase from 10 years ago, when 1,400 stores opened.

Miami was one of 37 cities listed as a stronghold of activities. New York, Las Vegas and Los Angeles were also on the list.

 

Source:  Miami Herald

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