Developer Royal Palm Cos. revised hotel/condo plans at Miami Worldcenter
In the wake of the coronavirus, developer Royal Palm Cos. has revised its plans for a hotel and condo at Miami Worldcenter, the 27-acre, $5-billion, mixed-use project underway in downtown Miami. RPC now plans to make the Legacy Hotel & Residences pandemic-resistant, with voice-activated elevators, touch-less room key access and autonomous disinfection robots to sanitize common areas.
The 50-story tower will have 256 hotel rooms, 274 condo units and a 100,000-sq.-ft. medical center on the ground floor. To prevent the spread of another pandemic, the center’s medical-grade air-purification system and anti-microbial surfaces will be expanded throughout the building, says Dan Kodsi, CEO of Miami-based RPC.
“It would be a great place to stay during a pandemic. People could get all the benefits of living in a hotel, and if they were to catch a virus, they could go downstairs and see a doctor or nurse and get a blood test. We’ll have separate elevators for different floors, and we could keep people who are sick away from non-sick people,” Kodsi says.
Construction is to begin this fall, with completion in late 2023.
- CareerSource South Florida established a layoff aversion fund for small businesses and community organizations affected by the pandemic in Miami-Dade and Monroe counties. Businesses with three to 10 full-time employees are eligible to receive up to $5,000; those with 11-25 employees could receive up to $7,500, while those with 26-50 get up to $10,000.
- The Fontainebleau Miami Beach Resort filed a lawsuit in federal court seeking a judicial declaration that it does not have to pay into a health insurance fund for unionized workers whom it laid off in March. The suit claims the South Florida Hotel and Culinary Employees Welfare Fund, along with Unite Here Local 355, improperly demanded up to $5.5 million in health plan contributions for 1,077 laid-off union members. The hotel says the union contract requires payments only on behalf of working employees. The hotel argues that even if it were obligated to make health fund contributions for laid-off workers, that obligation would be voided because of the “catastrophic negative impact” of the coronavirus shutdown. Union officials say other Miami hotels have continued making contributions for laid-off workers during the pandemic.
- The operator of the 40-room Hotel Astor on South Beach filed for bankruptcy protection from its landlord, saying the coronavirus shutdown had left it unable to pay its rent and debt obligations. The hotel operator initially filed for Chapter 11 in 2018 to stop an eviction lawsuit. It says it was close to selling the land lease for the hotel, but the deal fell through because of the pandemic, forcing it to reopen the bankruptcy process.
- New York-based L&L Holding and Carpe Real Estate Partners will redevelop the former Rubell Family art museum in Wynwood. It plans a mixed-use project.
- Orlando- based Zom Living will develop the Watermark at Merrick Park, a senior rental project with 196 units in Coral Gables.
- A 271,262-sq.-ft. distribution center near I-95 in Opa-locka sold for $17.1 million. Orlando-based developer Foundry Commercial is building Midpoint Miami Logistics Park on 18 acres near Florida’s Turnpike and U.S. 27 in Hialeah Gardens.
- Tabit, an Israeli cloud-based services provider that helps restaurants manage their businesses and takeout orders, opened a headquarters for its U.S. operations in North Miami Beach. The company received $35 million in funding earlier this year to expand in North America. Tabit President Nadav Solomon, formerly a senior strategic consultant for the food industry at Ernst & Young, heads the Miami office.
- Privately held Mullen Technologies, an electric car manufacturer and distributor based in Southern California, agreed to acquire Miami-based electronic payments company Net Element in a stock-for-stock reverse merger. Once the deal is completed, Mullen shareholders will own 85% of the new company, with the other 15% belonging to Net Element shareholders.
- Miami-based financial tech company Nymbus raised $12 million to expand.
- Barcelona, Spain-based Accelya acquired Farelogix, a Miami-based software firm focused on the airline industry. Financial terms were not disclosed. Farelogix previously had agreed to be sold to Sabre for $360 million, but the deal collapsed amid regulatory and legal issues.
- Miami-based ChenMed, which operates primary care centers for seniors, plans to open 15 locations nationwide.
- Miami-based Baptist Health South Florida proposed a 61,500-sq.-ft. medical office building next to Boca Raton Regional Hospital. The project includes an outpatient surgery center and a 382-space garage.
East End Capital will soon begin building Foyer Wynwood, a 236- unit apartment project in Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood. The 375,000-sq.-ft., 12-story building will have furnished micro-units and co-living bedrooms with attached bathrooms, as well as traditional one- and two-bedroom apartments. Planned amenities include studios for making art, podcasts and videos. Monthly rents for the co-living bedrooms, including electricity and wifi, are expected to start at $1,500.
Read more in Florida Trend's September issue.
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