EnV at Mary Brickell Village — one of Miami’s most talked about new rental apartment projects — won’t be a rental after all.
Seizing on the red-hot demand for pre-construction condominiums in the Brickell area, the developers switched the project to a condominium, dubbed Nine at Mary Brickell Village.
The tower, which will remain 390 units spanning 34 floors, is under construction above the Publix at Mary Brickell Village at 999 SW First Ave.
Fortune International was retained to market the project, which is co-developed by Greenwich, Ct.-based Starwood Capital Group and San Antonio-based Lynd.
The switch to a condominium from a rental building could bring the developer more profit and more quickly, experts say. The move comes as numerous other new condo towers have been attracting cash-rich foreign buyers and prices in the downtown Brickell area have rebounded impressively from the housing crash as nearly all the overhang of condominums from that dark era have been absorbed.
“Other developers pre-selling condominiums have had good success with attracting buyers,” said Ron Shuffield, president of EWM Realty International in Coral Gables. “Location is most important, and that location has about everything you can ask for.”
A more skeptical Peter Zalewski, principal of CondoVultures, who tracks the market, cautioned, however, that with a host of other condos in the works, he sees “serious concerns that area is going to be overbuilt.”
The project — near Metrorail and the Metromover — is next to Swire Properties’ $1.05-billion Brickell CityCentre, which is expected to catapult downtown’s transformation into a 24-hour city to a new level with an array of shops, restaurants, offices and residential space.
“A lot of people say they’re near Mary Brickell Village,” said Edgardo Defortuna, CEO of Fortune. “We’re on Mary Brickell Village.”
Defortuna said demand for downtown condos has been robust, and the project has a timing advantage because it’ll be done in about a year. “We feel there is a window for the right size [units] and the timing is good,” Defortuna said.
With the project under way, the sales terms are less onerous than most new condos, which are financed with hefty buyer deposits.
Rather than requiring upwards of 50 percent of the price during construction, developers of Nine will ask for a 30 percent downpayment, with 10 percent at reservation and 20 percent at contract signing, Defortuna said.
The project will have one-, two- and three-bedroom units ranging from 744 to 2,100 square feet. Prices will run from $300,000 to more than $1 million. The price per square foot will be in the range of “$475 to $500,” Defortuna said.
The switch to condo means substantial upgrades to some features, Defortuna said: “We modified the kitchens and appliances and some finishes for a condominium. It is more high-end.”
Fortune expects to be taking reservations in three weeks to a month, he said.