- From additions to the skyline to royal retiring, Broward County is experiencing continued growth
If you’re house hunting in Broward County, experts will tell you to focus on one specific area: Downtown Fort Lauderdale. With all the new residential developments featuring the latest home designs, as well as trendy restaurants, world-class shopping and a host of available cultural opportunities (not to mention some of the best beaches and boating in the world), Fort Lauderdale is poised to meet the needs of almost any new resident.
The Place to Be
“Downtown Fort Lauderdale is the hot and trendy area in Broward County,” says Craig Studnicky, CEO of International Sales Group, an Aventura-based new-construction sales and marketing firm. “It’s being fueled by all the multi-family rental projects. Millennials rent—they don’t buy—and developers have met that demand. With that comes new restaurants and a whole new infrastructure of life.”
Josh Dotoli, principal of the Josh Dotoli Group with Compass in Fort Lauderdale, agrees that Fort Lauderdale is where it’s at. “Lake Ridge and Poinsettia Heights are the newest, trendiest areas right now,” he says. “They are more affordable for young professionals, but still within a mile of the beach and a half-mile from the excitement of Las Olas.” Dotoli is handling sales for a new 24-unit gated town home community called Galleria Villages. He also says that the Tarpon River neighborhood, just south of Broward Boulevard and west of Andrews Avenue, is “exploding.” “It’s very hip and laid-back,” Dotoli says. “There are beautiful tree-lined streets, and on a Sunday afternoon, you’ll see young professionals riding their bikes.”
The Future looks Bright
“I believe the future will be spectacular for Fort Lauderdale,” says Tim Elmes, a real estate agent with the Elmes Group at Compass in Fort Lauderdale. “Part of this is driven by the transfer of wealth in the U.S., which consists of approximately $30 trillion moving from a more conservative generation to the baby boomers and their children who are more open to spending. These people do not want to stay up north in the winter.”
In addition to the benefits of warm weather, new tax laws are also driving wealthy people to South Florida, explains Elmes. “Now that people in high-tax states can no longer deduct more than $10,000 of state and local taxes from their federal tax return, they are moving their homesteads to states without income tax,” he says. “And, when compared to Miami and Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale is very well-priced for the lifestyle.”
Fort Lauderdale keeps its momentum going with several new high-rises on the way. This includes the highly anticipated 100 Las Olas from Kolter Urban, which will welcome its first residents this summer. The new construction will be Fort Lauderdale’s tallest tower and its first condo project with a hotel component (a full-service Hyatt Centric) in a decade. Units feature European cabinetry, quartz countertops and spa-like bath retreats with premium finishes and fixtures. Building amenities include a resort-style rooftop pool, a fitness center, a residents’ club room and entertainment areas.
In December, Stiles Residential Group celebrated the topping off of Alluvion Las Olas, Fort Lauderdale’s tallest apartment high-rise. Towering above the city at 480 feet, the 380-unit building is located directly on the Riverwalk and offers 40 different floor plans, from studios to three-bedroom apartments. There will also be two-story, townhouse-style apartments at the building’s base, as well as penthouse units. “We think Alluvion will be at the top of the market for ultra-luxury rentals as a result of a combination of the property’s location, its level of design both in the units and the common areas, and the size and programming of its amenity spaces,” says Jeff McDonough president of Stiles Residential Group. “We have amazing views of Downtown Fort Lauderdale, the Intracoastal, the ocean and the New River, and our location has a quaint neighborhood feel despite being right in the middle of the city.”
Designed by award-winning CFE Architects, Alluvion is distinguished by two major components: a seven-story podium that resembles a ship’s hull, and the tower, which resembles a mast. There will be a total of 40,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor amenity spaces, including a fitness center with on-demand classes and studio space for group fitness. Outside, there will be a resort-style pool deck, barbecue areas, fire pits and an event lawn.
Living like Royalty
As the nation ages, the demand for senior housing communities will only get stronger. And, since the Baby Boomer generation is the wealthiest in American history (so far), the demand for luxury senior communities in particular is forecast to remain strong. “Similar to the hotel industry, the senior housing industry is evolving to have options available for different income levels and lifestyles,” says Beth Burnham Mace, chief economist for the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care. “Development of senior housing properties has accelerated over the last several years. This includes upscale senior housing in urban areas.”
Examples of this trend are evident throughout South Florida, particularly in Broward County. The Palace at Weston, for instance, slated to debut later this year, is a four-story, Mediterranean-style property offering three distinct levels of care. The 130 independent living units will feature luxury hotel-like amenities and services, including an elegant dining room, a state-of-the-art fitness center, a piano bar, a theater and a computer center. There will also be 144 assisted-living units and a 46-bed memory care unit. Pricing starts at $4,950 per month, which includes social activities, gourmet dining, security, maintenance, transportation services, housekeeping and utilities.
“Just as in residential real estate, people want to live in South Florida, so there is a continued demand for new luxury senior housing,” says Adam Rosenblum, vice president of sales and marketing for The Palace Group, the community’s developer. Rosenblum expects The Palace to fill a void in the marketplace. “There isn’t another senior living community with this level of luxury offering a continuum of care in Weston,” he says.
Another senior community, Belmont Village Fort Lauderdale, is expecting its first residents in April 2020. The 12-story property has 204 units for independent living, assisted living and memory care and features multiple dining venues, a wellness center, a salon and massage facilities. Exterior amenities include a pool terrace and outdoor dining patios. Rates start around $4,900 per month.