August 4, 2005
Hot, Hip And Happening - At A Price
By Helen Hill
The most popular sound in Miami Beach these days is not the splash of ocean waves; it's the whoosh of condo units breaking the price barrier again!
This time it's the ultra-hip W South Beach Hotel & Residences, scheduled to rise on the site of the old Holiday Inn at 2201 Collins Ave., setting a new record for South Florida: Prices for the turnkey units are coming in at $1,500 to $2,500 a square foot.
So what makes the W special? Well the name for starters. Starwood's W is synonymous with fantabulous cool or, to quote real estate agent Kevin Tomlinson who specializes in such residences, the new W will be "sexy, modern, funky, elegant, mid-century and with South Beach style" - whew! The location is pretty neat too, 3 1/2 oceanfront acres just northeast of the cultural campus, home to the Bass Museum, Miami City Ballet, new regional Miami-Dade Public Library and within jogging distance of South Beach's extravaganzas.
The developer team combines some weighty names - Tri Star Capital, Related Urban Development (The Related Group of New York and The Related Group of Florida) and Starwood Properties. Expect a Wow lobby and interior design from Yabu Pushelberg and some deluxe hotel rooms designed by Costas Kondylis of Kondylis & Partners. All units are sold completely finished and furnished - right down to the table settings; price range, $800,000 to $5 million.
The W South Beach will be 20-stories tall, pet-friendly and consist of 500 units - studios, one and two bedrooms - all facing the ocean with unobstructed views. (Owners will have the option of participating in the W Hotel rental program.) Amenities include two resort-style pools, a 10,000 square foot world class Bliss Spa and two restaurants featuring celebrity chefs - famed Mr. Chow is reportedly one of them. Related Cervera is handling sales for and the hotel is expected to open at the end of 2007.
To celebrate the launch of the property, and the start of sales, the W is hosting an exclusive dinner for 75 to 100 celebrities, co-hosted by Quincy Jones during the MTV VMAs weekend in late August.