Restoration Hardware will open 7th Florida store in West Palm

Rendering of RH West Palm Beach

Home furnishings retailer Restoration Hardware will open a new store in downtown West Palm Beach in November.

It will be Restoration Hardware’s seventh Florida location. The retailer also has stores in Aventura, Jacksonville, South Miami, Tampa, Vero Beach and Winter Park.

The new store in West Palm Beach will span almost 80,000 square feet. The store, called RH West Palm Beach, will be located at 700 South Rosemary Avenue, Suite 112, in the city’s downtown area.

The design of RH West Palm Beach will feature gardens and a water fountain that will be 12 feet tall and 18 feet wide, plus a rooftop restaurant.

Architect James Gillam of Backen, Gillam & Kroeger conceived the contemporary design of RH West Palm Beach.

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Kaplan University’s parent renews Cypress Creek lease for 193,000 square feet

Cypress Creek Concourse

The parent company of Kaplan University renewed a lease for 193,000 square feet of office space in Fort Lauderdale’s Cypress Creek area.

It is the largest office lease executed in Broward County since 2015, according Jeffrey Samaras, executive managing director of brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield.

Kaplan Inc. renewed it lease of the two office buildings at Cypress Creek Concourse, a 45-acre development built in 2002.

The two buildings at 1515 and 1525 Cypress Creek Road house Kaplan’s corporate offices and the management, administrative and support facilities of its Higher and Professional Education Group.

Other large leases for office space elsewhere in the Cypress Creek area were signed earlier this year.

Liberty Tower leased 40,000 square feet and State Farm 20,000 square feet at 2100 West Cypress Road in Cypress Creek, a 180,000-square-foot office building where the building’s owner, Hotwire Communications, occupies 120,000 square feet.

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Hurricane debris haulers focus on South Florida, snub poorer parts of the state

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi

Storm debris from Hurricane Irma is piling up in many Florida counties because the companies they hired to remove debris are doing the work for more money in South Florida.

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said those companies may be violating a state law that prohibits price gouging. Bondi said Gov. Rick Scott is concerned about debris-hauling companies that are “breaking contracts” with Florida counties.

Officials of six counties – Sarasota, Orange, Manatee, Indian River, Hendry and Alachua – complained to the state government last week about debris-hauling companies working only in South Florida, where they command higher prices.

Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs said South Florida counties are paying as much as double the prices that other counties offer to remove from Hurricane Irma, which made landfall in the Florida Keys on Sept. 10.

Hendry County administrator Charles Chapman said the county contracted with companies to haul debris for $5.50 per cubic yard, but the companies’ subcontractors refuse to do the work unless they get a higher price, perhaps as much as $8 per cubic yard.

But Chapman said Hendry County can’t afford to pay $8 per cubic yard to subcontractors of two debris-hauling companies: Deerfield Beach-based Ashbritt Environmental and Crowder-Gulf, headquartered near Mobile, Alabama.

Sarasota County’s emergency chief Rich Collins said the county is prepared to pay debris haulers $8 per cubic yard, but “they’re going where they can get $15.” [Tampa Bay Times] – Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Apartment property in Rockledge sells for $6.25 million

Rockledge Villas

A 52-year-old apartment property next to a golf course in Rockledge sold for $6.25 million, or $67,204 per unit.

A private investor in New York acquired the 93-unit apartment property, called Rockledge Villas.

The six-acre property at 1525 South Fiske Boulevard in Rockledge was built in 1965 along the northeast corner of the Rockledge Golf Course and Country Club.

The buyer “was in a 1031 exchange from a property they sold in the Tampa area,” Felipe Echarte, first vice president investments in the Fort Lauderdale office of brokerage firm Marcus & Millichap, said in a prepared statement.

Echarte held the exclusive listing for Rockledge Villas together with Evan Kristol, executive managing director investments in Marcus & Millichap’s Fort Lauderdale office.

Rents at the apartment property are “approximately $50 below market,” Kristol said in a prepared statement.

Kristol and Echarte represented the private investor who sold Rockledge Villas and procured the buyer, also a private investor.

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Hurricane Irma’s unofficial Florida death toll is 75

Eleven residents of the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills died after the nursing home lost air conditioning due to Hurricane Irma. (Source: Reuters)

Hurricane Irma caused 75 deaths in Florida, according to the Miami Herald.

The Florida Department of Emergency Management reported Friday that the hurricane caused 50 deaths statewide, including four in Miami-Dade County and seven in Broward County.

The causes of death ranged from electrocution and heart attack to blunt force trauma and carbon monoxide poisoning from generators.

The Herald’s unofficial death toll includes 25 storm-related deaths not counted by the state’s emergency management department: 14 in the Florida Keys and 11 linked to a nursing home in Hollywood

Eleven elderly patients at the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills died after the nursing home lost air conditioning due to Hurricane Irma, which made landfall Sept. 10 in the Florida Keys as a Category 4 storm.

Two of the nursing home residents who died had body temperatures that exceeded 108 degrees. [Miami Herald] Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

August occupancy, room rates rose across South Florida

Ikona Hotel, 3030 Bayshore Drive, Fort Lauderdale (Credit: Sun-Sentinel)

August occupancy rates and daily room rates rose from last year’s levels throughout tri-county South Florida, according to hotel research firm STR.

The hotel occupancy rate in Miami-Dade County rose to 75.4 percent last month from 73.7 percent in August 2016, and the average daily room rate increased to $145.01 from $143.64.

Hotel occupancy in Broward rose to 74.9 percent in August from 72.9 percent in the same month last year, while the average daily room rate edged up to $108.59 from $106.17.

In Palm Beach County, the August occupancy rate rose slightly to 63.4 percent from 62.9 percent last year, and the average daily room rate was almost unchanged at $115.80, nine cents higher than in August 2016.

August results were unaffected by Hurricane Irma, which led many hotels to evacuate guests before Irma made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane in the Florida Keys on Sept. 10. [Sun-Sentinel] Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Billionaire cuts asking price for Palm Beach estate by $22M

Aerial view of 1500 South Ocean Boulevard (Credit: Andy Frame) and Jim Clark (inset)

Billionaire Jim Clark, co-founder of Internet browser company Netscape Communications, cut the asking price for his Palm Beach estate by $22 million to $122 million.

Clark also put his estate in the local multiple listing service for the first time since August 2016, when he started trying in to sell it in an off-market deal.

Even after cutting his original $137 million asking price by $22 million, Clark’s estate at 1500 South Ocean Boulevard is the most expensive property in the Palm Beach Board of Realtors Multiple Listing Service.

The 5.5-acre property is an ocean-to-lake estate with a six-bedroom house, a two-bedroom guest house and a two-bedroom beach house, accessible via a tunnel under South Ocean Boulevard.

The property has 68,831 square feet of indoor and outdoor living space, 340 linear feet along the Atlantic Ocean and 360 feet along the Intracoastal Waterway.

The listing agent for the estate is Cristina Condon of Sotheby’s International Realty. [Palm Beach Daily News]Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Dam breach complicates Puerto Rico’s recovery from Hurricane Maria

Damage in Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria (Source: FEMA)

Officials in Puerto Rica scrambled to evacuate 70,000 people who live downstream from a broken dam as the scope of Hurricane Maria’s destruction on the island became clearer.

Authorities sent buses to move people away from the Guajataca Dam in northwest Puerto Rico after an inspection revealed a breach in the 89-year-old dam.

Anthony Reynes, a meteorologist with the U.S. National Weather Service, told Associated Press that the breach might be an early sign of a total failure of the dam.

More than 15 inches of rain fell on mountains surrounding the Guajataca Dam after Maria made landfall on Puerto Rico as a Category 4 hurricane, raising the level of a man-made lake the dam contains.

Up to six inches of additional rainfall was expected through Saturday.

Complicating rescue and recovery efforts in Puerto Rico are widespread power outages and a hurricane-damaged communications system.

Officials said Hurricane Maria knocked out 85 percent of Puerto Rico’s cell phone towers, telephone and Internet cables.

Government spokesman Carlos Bermudez told Associated Press that 40 of the island’s 78 municipalities had no communications capacity.

Hurricane Maria caused at least six deaths in Puerto Rico, 15 in Dominica, three in Haiti, two in Guadeloupe, and one in the Dominican Republic. [Associated Press] Mike Seemuth

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

National Cheat Sheet: Online RE investment platform scores funding from Steven Cohen, Florida suspends construction rules to rebuild post-Irma … & more

Clockwise from left: Janet Yellen, Nile Niami’s “Opus,” Ray Sturm and Steve Cohen

From TRD New York: AlphaFlow scores investment from Steven Cohen’s VC fund
Online real estate investment platform AlphaFlow raised $4.1 million in a seed funding round this week. The investors were led by Steve Cohen’s Point72 Ventures and Resolute Ventures and included other big name tech funds. AlphaFlow buys residential bridge loans from crowdfunding companies and hard-money lenders and puts them on “an automated investment platform,” which allows institutions to invest in them. [TRD]

Interest rates hold steady as Fed begins to sell bonds
The Federal Reserve’s policy of so-called quantitative easing is coming to an end as the Fed announced this week it will begin selling the bonds acquired in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. The Fed left interest rates unchanged, but officials said they expect one more increase in short-term rates this year. [TRD]

Agents tell TRD how they do business safely
Meeting strangers in empty homes is how real estate agents get the job done. The National Association of Realtors found that while just 4 percent reported actually being the victims of a crime, 38 percent of respondents said they felt unsafe in the last year. Agents told The Real Deal that personal safety is a major factor in how they conduct business. “There are multiple times where you are standing there and someone is intimidating,” said Justine Bray, a broker with Brown Harris Stevens. [TRD]


Florida suspends some construction rules to hasten post-Irma recovery
The state of Florida will suspend certain regulations to speed up repairs at properties damaged by Hurricane Irma. The Department of Business and Professional Regulation issued an emergency order to “suspend certain regulations and fees that may prevent, hinder or delay” construction work, including roof repairs and installations. [TRD]

Brokers try to polish the image of South Florida’s coastal homes
South Florida’s luxury market made it through Hurricane Irma mostly intact, but now agents and brokers are trying to polish the appeal of storm-prone coastal communities. Cervera Real Estate, for example, posted photos of sunny, dry streets and clean, pristine beaches on social media, using the hashtags #MiamiOpenForBusiness and #CondosWithPower. [TRD]

Kushner’s 666 Fifth Avenue benefited from a highly unusual appraisal
Kushner Companies’ record $1.8 billion acquisition of 666 Fifth Avenue in 2007 didn’t look that risky to the bond investors who funded it, because of a highly unusual appraisal. Appraisers valued the property’s office portion alone at $2 billion, making the entire property worth up to $3 billion — about 70 percent more than Kushner paid. [TRD]

NYC attorneys discuss how landlords can maximize collections
The message real estate attorneys have for New York landlords fighting with their tenants is simple: don’t go to court. “If you go to court, you’re really a loser to begin with,” Cory Weiss, a partner at Ingram Yuzek, told the audience at the New York Multifamily Summit. “Because the courts are so tenant-oriented that a tenant could spend months in court not having to pay any rent and then sign a stipulation giving him or her six months to pay the rent,” he said. “The judge won’t impose legal fees on tenants.” [TRD]

Sex doesn’t sell for $100 million: LA’s “Opus” gets $15M price chop
Developer Nile Niami’s trophy spec mansion “Opus” was introduced with a racy listing video featuring half-naked women painted gold and a $100 million price tag, but the 20,500-square-foot Beverly Hills mansion just got a $15 million price cut. Three Damien Hirst paintings, a gold Rolls-Royce Dawn and Lamborghini Aventador Roadster are reportedly no longer part of the sale price. [TRD]

Developers vying for property $20M in tax breaks in Atlanta
Invest Atlanta, the city’s Economic Development Authority, is set to approve development projects for property tax breaks that could be worth more than $20 million over the next decade. Among the biggest potential winners is North American Properties, which submitted a plan to redevelop Colony Square into a 200,000-square-feet of office space and a retail component including a food hall and movie theater. [Bisnow]

Third time’s a charm: Chicago approves revised Uptown development
The Chicago Plan Commission gave approval for a 12-story development in Uptown after changes to the design. Developer Clayco and architect Forum Studio plan to include ground floor retail, 150 rental units and just 29 parking spaces, which met reductions sought under Chicago’s Transit-Oriented Development Ordinance. Clayco’s first design was for an eight-story building, and the second was a 12-story building with a brick-like facade. [Curbed]

Source: The Real Deal South Florida

Dropping soon: The Real Deal’s Los Angeles fall issue!

The Real Deal Los Angeles‘ fall magazine is set to hit newsstands this October!

The upcoming issue is packed with the most important industry news and insider information, including a look inside the world of residential broker coaching and foreign investment in L.A. real estate. The October magazine will also look at the top commercial brokerages doing business in the San Fernando Valley, as well the city’s industrial boom — currently the most in-demand sector of the commercial market.

You can receive your copy by subscribing to The Real Deal Los Angeles. Click here to read the July issue, featuring a profile of Tom Barrack, a look at Compass and Douglas Elliman’s respective forays into the L.A. market and more.

Call Frank Morales at (310) 270-8124 or contact to learn more about advertising opportunities.

Source: The Real Deal South Florida