Real Estate

Fortune Secures $36M Loan for 77-Story Casa Tua Condo Tower in Miami

Fortune secures $36M loan for 77-story, 533-unit Ora by Casa Tua condo tower in Brickell.

By Doug Elli

7/10, 12:38 EDT

Key Takeaway

  • Fortune International Group secured a $36 million pre-development loan from Amerant Bank for its 77-story Ora by Casa Tua condo tower in Miami.
  • The project, valued at $70 million, is 45% presold with unit prices starting at $800,000 and aims to break ground by early 2025.
  • About 65% of buyers are foreign investors attracted to the short-term rental-friendly units, which will be fully furnished and designed by m2 Atelier.

Fortune International's Bold Move in Brickell

Edgardo Defortuna’s Fortune International Group has made a significant stride in Miami's real estate market by closing on the development site for its ambitious Ora by Casa Tua mixed-use condo tower. The Brickell-based firm acquired the garage and land at 1210 Brickell Avenue in a deal valuing the site at approximately $70 million. This acquisition, coupled with the air rights Fortune already owned, sets the stage for the development of a 77-story, 533-unit residential tower, marking the first residential venture for the Casa Tua hospitality brand. This move underscores the strategic importance of the Brickell area for high-end residential developments.

Financing and Development Details

Fortune International secured a $36 million pre-development loan from Amerant Bank to kickstart the Ora by Casa Tua project. According to Berkadia’s Scott Wadler, the financing terms were highly attractive, drawing significant interest from banks and debt fund providers. The project, which is about 45 percent presold, features units starting at $800,000 and ranging up to four bedrooms. The firm plans to demolish the existing garage and commence construction between late 2024 and early 2025. This financing milestone is crucial for the project's progression, highlighting the confidence lenders have in the development's potential.

The Appeal of Short-Term Rental-Friendly Condos

The Ora by Casa Tua project taps into the growing trend of short-term rental-friendly condos, which are particularly appealing to foreign investors. Approximately 65 percent of the buyers are international, attracted by the flexibility to use the units while in Miami and generate rental income when they are away. These units, designed by Italian firm m2 Atelier, will be delivered fully furnished, making them more affordable and convenient. This trend is gaining momentum in South Florida, with over two dozen similar projects in the pipeline, primarily concentrated in Greater Downtown Miami.

Broader Market Implications

The development of Ora by Casa Tua is indicative of broader trends in Miami's real estate market, particularly the increasing demand for flexible, short-term rental-friendly properties. This demand is driven by both domestic and international investors seeking to capitalize on Miami's robust rental market. The project's success could spur further developments in the area, reinforcing Brickell's status as a prime location for luxury residential projects. Additionally, the involvement of renowned design and architectural firms like m2 Atelier and Arquitectonica adds a layer of prestige and appeal to the project.

Street Views

  • Scott Wadler, Berkadia (Bullish on Ora by Casa Tua):

    "The financing has the most attractive interest rate for a pre-development loan that he and his team have worked on in the last several years. We received a significant number of bids from banks and debt fund providers, and the banks were attracted to the combination of the sponsorship, the presales and the buyer deposits."

Management Quotes

  • Edgardo Defortuna, Fortune International Group:

    "We paid about $30 million for the land, which includes the garage."
    "The short-term rental-friendly condo project is about 45 percent presold."
    "About 65 percent of the buyers are foreign investors. Short-term rental-friendly condos are appealing to investors because they can use the units while they are in Miami and generate income renting them out for the rest of the year, plus the units are typically smaller than standard condos so they are more affordable."