- The Related Group says it has sold $40 million worth of untis in what has historically been the slow season for South Florida.
- The forthcoming Auberge Beach in Fort Lauderdale is described as the first of its kind in Broward.
- Auberge Beach has 171 units in two towers located on 450 feet of north-facing beachfront property and is expected to be completed in 2017.
Real estate sales in Florida take a historically dive during the sweltering summer months, but the Miami-based Related Group (TRG) real estate firm may have broken the curse.
Thanks to Auberge Beach, a new double-tower luxury condo development in Fort Lauderdale, the summer has been very fruitful for TRG. A press release stated the firm is nearing $34 million in sales so far this summer, but TRG vice president Patrick Campbell says that number to be closer to $40 million.
“We always perceived that Broward was a value compared to Miami,” he said.
It’s not a new trend to incorporate the finer things into a living space. First there were fitness centers, and then computer labs. Then movie theaters and on-site spas. Then those same fitness centers were given facelifts by way of relocating them to parts of the building with better views. Computer labs and media centers became co-working lounges. Movie theaters got cushier recliners. Spas offered more services, and so on.
But Jorge M. Perez, chairman and CEO of TRG, likes art. He likes art so much that he’s bringing it into his developments to help create an extension of his clientele’s own homes.
“Part of our philosophy at the Related Group — Jorge Perez is our owner and he’s a collector — but it’s probably been over the past ten years he’s been focusing on art more and more and just making it a significant part of every one of our projects,” Campbell said.
There is a $2 million Fernando Botero sculpture on the pool deck at Auberge. The luxury development also staffs an art curator to work alongside the interior designer.
“[Perez’s] philosophy is that art, whether it’s expensive art of not, elevates the conversation among the residents to a different level. People look at things differently, and it really elevates the buildings as a whole,” Campbell added.
There are world-class restaurants within the building, as well as a world-class spa and multiple swimming pools with cabanas peppered on the property.
There are also Hugo Zapata sculptures on the property, as if a Botero wasn’t enough.
“Over the last ten years, [fine art] became less of a decorating idea and more of a focal point… on the luxury projects at least,” Campbell said.
Ultra luxury to Broward
Auberge Beach is, as defined by Campbell, the first luxury living introduced to the area.
There are two towers that sit on 450 feet of beachfront property facing north. A total of 171 units are housed here, and although the project is expected to be finished in 2017, over 90 percent of the north tower has been sold and over 30 percent of the south tower has been sold.
Condo sizes range from just under 2,000 square feet to 7,000 square feet. Campbell says that this makes them less like condos and more like homes.
Success in a historically slow season
According to Campbell, the summer months in South Florida have always been historically slow. True to form, the Miami Association of Realtors reported that condo sales through July dropped 24.7 percent month-over-month. However, there are a speculated 12,000 condo units currently under construction in Miami.
“After May comes and goes… the place is dead until you get to November again,” Campbell said. “We’re very proud that over the past three months, we’ve sold $40 million in inventory. No one else is doing those kinds of numbers.”