RH bids on Nikki Beach

RH, formerly known as Restoration Hardware, is one of four bidders looking to redevelop the city-owned site of Miami Beach that includes the Nikki Beach Club.

The high-end home furnishings retailer has revealed details of its proposal for the waterfront site at 1 Ocean Drive ahead of a public meeting next Monday.

RH competes with Tao Group Hospitality; Ackermann and US Management Group; and Butcher Brothers – the latter controlling beach franchises in the city. Current operators, Jack and Lucia Penrod, were banned from bidding on the site after they missed the deadline by 15 minutes. (The Penrod family is apparently seeking a court order to overturn the city’s decision.)

RH plans to invest up to $170 million in the restaurant and entertainment venue if it secures a 30-year lease. The company, led by CEO Gary Friedman (read a colorful story about him here), will offer the city a base rent of $7 million.

In addition to the public park and sculpture garden, the project will include a beach club, a bathhouse and spa, three dining and drinking venues, a design studio, a library and art galleries.

RH’s proposal wasn’t the only one revealed this week in South Beach. Near Ocean Drive, Jesta Group, owner of the Clevelander Hotel, said it plans to redevelop the historic Art Deco property into … affordable housing.

Jesta didn’t share many details (including whether or not the structures will remain), but it is looking to take advantage of zoning incentives provided by the state’s new affordable housing law. The Live Local Act trumps local control over density and height requirements. Gesta said it would allocate 40 percent of the planned housing units to affordable housing. The remaining units are likely to be luxury apartments.

What we think: Will we see a rush of developers trying to destroy historic properties with the Live Local Act? Send me a note at kk@therealdeal.com.

Closing time

residential: Sports investor Jerry Cardinale paid $20 million for his next-door neighbor’s home at 960 North Ocean Boulevard in Palm Beach. Kathleen Belznak, the widow of New Jersey real estate developer Alan Belznak, sold the 4,500-square-foot, five-bedroom home.

commercial: Calmwater Capital has acquired Banyan Cay Resort & Golf Club, an unfinished mixed-use development located at 200 Banyan Way in West Palm Beach. Calmwater was the largest creditor in the Banyan Cay bankruptcy and acquired the property through a $94.1 million credit offer.

– Research by Adam Farrance

Oceana Bal Harbor (Arctictonica)

New in the market

A two-story penthouse in Oceana Bal Harbor has hit the market for $62 million. The nearly 9,000-square-foot apartment has six bedrooms, eight and two-half bathrooms and also has a 7,000-square-foot rooftop terrace. Chris Carlos, a partner in his family’s alcohol distribution business, Republic National Distributing Company, paid $25 million for the penthouse when the development was completed in 2017. Kimberly Rudstein of Keller Williams holds the listing.

Something we learned

Carl Fisher (from Fisher Island) was a former cyclist before becoming a developer. He also smoked cigars incessantly and chewed and swallowed their butts. The more you know?

Elsewhere in Florida

  • The Miami-Dade County School Board voted not to recognize October as LGBTQ+ History Month for the second year in a row, in an hours-long meeting last week where more than 100 people signed up to speak. President Marie Terre Rojas, Vice President Dani Espino, Roberto Alonso, Marie Blanco, and Mónica Colucci voted against recognition; Members Lucia Baez-Geller, Dorothy Bendros Mendingal and Luisa Santos voted in favor of the resolution, according to the Miami Herald.
  • Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is being sued by Monique Worrell, the former Orange-Osceola state attorney whom DeSantis removed from office. Worrell asked the Florida Supreme Court to overturn the order, alleging that the governor made vague allegations against her and failed to identify conduct that supported those allegations, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
  • As hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters increase in frequency and intensity, tourism-dependent businesses are looking to extreme weather as their main long-term challenge, replacing the pandemic.
  • It is not only tourism that is affected by hurricanes. As many as 5 million chickens died from Hurricane Idalia, a Category 3 hurricane that struck Florida in late August.

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