Armani-designed condo project coming to Sunny Isles

Miami Herald

by Martha Brannigan

A 60-story luxury condo will feature architecture by César Pelli and interiors by Giorgio Armani’s Armani/Casa Interior Design Studio. The Related Group and Dezer Development will jointly develop the project.

Global fashion designer Giorgio Armani is bringing his flair to a new condo project in South Florida.

The 60-story Residences by Armani/Casa will rise on an oceanfront site at 18975 Collins Avenue in Sunny Isles Beach, in a partnership between Jorge Pérez’s Related Group and Gil Dezer’s Dezer Development.

Dezer has a track record in building luxury projects with a marquis brand: its Porsche Design Tower is under construction on the same stretch of beach, and the developer has built six towers bearing the Trump name.

“Trump. Porsche. Armani. It’s a niche market I’m creating,” said Gil Dezer, president of Dezer Development. “We’re getting luxury brands to join us on the buildings. It makes for amazing projects.”

Star architect César Pelli, who designed the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Miami, was tapped as the architect for the Armani project.

The condominium will mark the first U.S. project by Armani/Casa Interior Design Studio, which has designed interiors for condos in other locations: Maçka Residences in Istanbul, Turkey; The World Towers in Mumbai, India; and Century Spire, in Manila, Philippines.

Working under the direction of the fashion designer, the Armani/Casa Design Studio will designate interior materials, colors, finishes and custom-made furnishings designed to reflect the setting and architecture. In a statement, Armani, CEO of Armani Group, said the Sunny Isles project provides “the opportunity to create something really very special — a remarkable living space, imbued with the spirit of modern elegance.”

The tower will include 260 luxury units and is planned for completion in 2016. Units will be priced from $1.2 million to $5.5 million.

Dezer said his firm and Related jointly bought the majority interests in a broken condominium to acquire the site. He said the project is expected to begin taking reservations soon.

“This is going to appeal to the same type of buyer as Porsche. They will be equally luxurious but lesser priced, strictly because they will be smaller units,” Dezer said.

The Armani units will range mostly from 2,000 square feet to 3,500 square feet, rather than the 5,000 square feet to 8,000 square feet typical of the Porsche tower.

About 90 percent of the units in the Porsche project are under contract, Dezer said. The project is set to be finished in May 2015.

Dezer owns more than 27 acres of oceanfront property including 2,100 feet of beachfront on Collins Avenue between 158th Street and 191st Street.

Related, which is leading the latest boom in condominium construction in South Florida, has been pursuing a number of projects as joint ventures during the latest development cycle.

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