Nest Seekers flies south to Miami

The Real Deal

Amanda Armstrong
June 1, 2005

Capitalizing on the South Florida real estate market, Nest Seekers International has bypassed Palm Beach's Worth Avenue like other Manhattan brokerage transplants and headed down to Miami, where the market is hotter than ever. The firm opened an office on Miami's Brickell Avenue, anticipating their clients' demand for the area's sunny beaches, ocean views and low taxes.

"With oceanfront land ever-decreasing, this is a prime time to buy in South Florida - Miami and even Fort Lauderdale - when there are excellent pre-construction units and finished condos ripe for the picking," said Nest Seekers CEO Eddie Shapiro.

In the past year, Miami's condo development frenzy has reached new heights. Last month, developer Leon Cohen unveiled plans for what could be the world's tallest condo building, two 110-story skyscrapers along Biscayne Boulevard in Downtown Miami. New York developers have been active in hotel-to-condo development there. Ian Schrager is transforming the Shore Club to condos and Donald Trump is building a 24-story, 298-unit condo-hotel in Fort Lauderdale.

Manhattan transplants Brown Harris Stevens, Sotheby's and Corcoran all have offices in Palm Beach.

While the Miami market is booming, some observers have their doubts. Citi Habitats founder Andrew Heiberger, who just opened Buttonwood Real Estate, a development firm that is not working in South Florida, warns that the area may be among the first places affected in a market bust.