Small Fortune Buys Miami Investor the Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale
by Sep Niakan | August 26, 2013
Backed by a partnership with Invesco and a $45 million loan from a group led by Sun Trust, Miami-based investor Karim Alibhai has purchased the Ritz-Carlton Fort Lauderdale luxury hotel for nearly $66 million. Located at 1 N. Fort Lauderdale Beach Boulevard, the oceanfront hotel sports 166 rooms and 28 third party-owned condo-hotel rental units. Alibhai’s Gencom Group has a quarter-century history of either buying or developing Ritz-Carlton and Hyatt properties.
But such a hefty investment was only made after careful consideration of potential returns. In fact, the hospitality industry was led by the luxury lodging segment in growth, during the second quarter of 2013, expanding at a clip of 4.6 percent for average daily rates and 6 percent in revenue per occupied room. The amenities are also befitting the kingly sum including four-star restaurants, private cabanas on the pool deck, over 24,000 square feet of meeting space, and an 8,500 square foot spa and business center.
Even though Fort Lauderdale is no Miami or Miami Beach when it comes to the hospitality business, the acquisition of the Ritz-Carlton is the second priciest hotel transaction in South Florida, topped only the sale of the Miami Beach Resort for $177 million this past March. The hotel originally opened under The St. Regis brand in 2007 but will apparently keep its Ritz-Carlton moniker under the management of its new owner.
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