(Bloomberg) -- The Miami “supertall” tower slated for 888 Brickell Ave. and managed by Major Food Group (MFG) has released detailed plans of its interiors and public spaces. It will be called Major.
The 90-story tower from the team behind New York’s Carbone and the Grill restaurants will have 259 apartments with prices ranging from $1.6 million to $11 million for a four-bedroom unit. Prices for penthouses have yet to be announced.
“It’s a premium product that will certainly garner a premium price,” says Michael Stern, the chief executive officer and founder of JDS Development Group, the company developing the building. “From an architectural standpoint, it will be something very different than what you’ve seen before.”
The building, designed by Studio Sofield, will have a facade covered with ivory travertine and white stucco, with glossy black steel beams; at its peak will be four massive sculptures inspired, the designer says, by Italian futurism.
Residences will be offered fully furnished including plates and silverware—which will be chosen by MFG co-founder and chef Mario Carbone, who is also designing the rooms’ kitchens in collaboration with Studio Sofield. Apartments are designed so that owners will have the option of closing off parts and renting them out as hotel suites.
“You can lock off a suite and put it in a hotel pool,” Stern says about opening rooms up for reservations. “You can have that flexibility and offset your ownership costs, or you can use all of the apartment.”
At any given time, he estimates, about 200 hotel suites will be available. “There are no dedicated hotel floors,” he explains. “The condo units represent the hotel pool.”
MFG will manage the hotel rooms. MFG’s co-founder Jeff Zalaznick says the company has been looking for the opportunity to open a hotel for years, “But did I think I would also be selling branded condos with that hotel?” He adds: “It seems like a natural evolution of our brand. We’re going to be offering a product unlike anything on the market.”
Part of that selling point is the Sofield-designed residences, which will include 24-hour room service from a MFG-run kitchen as well as the option of hiring a chef from the kitchen to cook in apartments and hotel rooms. An even larger part, both Stern and Zalaznick say, is the building’s four, as-yet unnamed MFG-branded and managed restaurants, two of which will be inside a massive, 120,000 square foot, Ken Fulk-designed private club also managed by MFG.
“It consists of roughly eight floors,” says Stern. “It will have an indoor paddle court, a pool, a grand event space, and two restaurants.” Zalaznick adds that there will also be a private boxing gym and spa with cold and hot plunges, IV drips, and infrared heat rooms—“a place where you work hard and play hard, and you never have to leave.”
Stern declines to specify how much membership will cost or how many memberships to outsiders will be made available, but confirms that building residents will automatically have membership. “Frankly,” he says, “we want to keep it exclusive, and we want to control access.”
Private clubs, he notes, are having a moment right now in Miami, personified by MFG’s ZZ’s “which has 2,000 members and a 7,000-member waitlist,” Stern says. “But ZZ’s is a few thousand feet. This will be 100,000-plus; there’s nothing that touches this scale.”
The building will have four restaurants, each with interiors by designer Ken Fulk. The largest—a double-height space on the ground floor—will be open to the public. “We’re contemplating doing a Carbone-related concept,” says Zalaznick, referring to the nostalgia-inducing, big-ticket Italian-American restaurant with locations in New York, Las Vegas, and Miami. “Probably not a straight Carbone,” he adds, “a Carbone steakhouse. Because a steakhouse is the most powerful thing you can have at a hotel or a resort. Look at the giant properties in Vegas, a steakhouse is always the No. 1 performer.”
The other public-facing restaurant will be a coffee shop along the lines of Sadelle’s, MFG’s high-end, high-style bagel-pushing shop that opened its first location in Manhattan’s SoHo in 2015 and has since expanded to Las Vegas and Dallas. “It will be an all-day coffee and breakfast place, like the Diner at the Beverly Hills hotel,” says Zalaznick. He says the ground floor will include a store featuring brands that MFG uses and supports, from MFG’s favorite coffee to clothing lines.
Inside the members club, one restaurant will offer a European-style rooftop indoor and outdoor experience, according to Zalaznick. “Big whole fish, beautiful pasta with clams, fresh pizzas, big vegetable platters. Think Cinq en Cinq,” says Zalaznick, referencing the trendy beach club in southern France. The second restaurant, located indoors, will be Chinese—a new concept for MFG.
The goal is to make both the residential and club spaces feel “downtown New York-sophisticated vs a Miami pastiche,” Stern says. “Let’s take an example: What’s the hottest lounge in New York right now? It’s Zero Bond. Who designed it? Bill Sofield”—who, Stern explains, “knows how to create that magic, and feeling, and spirit of a place.”
The word “placemaking,” Stern concludes “is a tacky word, but it’s intangible, and this guy gets it. We get the architecture part of it, and Major Food Group gets the lifestyle part.”
Major is slated to open in early 2026; sales for the building will launch this fall. At the moment, Miami’s housing market is still booming, but luxury housing sales on the East Coast are beginning to slow, which could affect South Florida. The stock market’s decline shows no sign of slowing, and interest rates continue to rise.
While acknowledging the potential headwinds, Stern, who has four additional Miami buildings that are either complete or in development, remains bullish. “That slowdown—we haven’t really seen in South Florida,” he says. “You’ve seen it in other places, but Florida is just so out of whack. There just isn’t supply. We burned through the product we have here, and we have a lot of people renting who haven’t bought yet.”
To a certain extent, that’s borne out by sales data. In the first quarter, compared to the same period in 2021, closed sales were up 51%, prices were up 22.7%, and inventory was down by 53.6% in the Miami coastal mainland, according to a report by Douglas Elliman. Condo sales in the area increased over the previous year’s figure for the seventh consecutive quarter, according to the report. In the Brickell neighborhood, where the Major tower will be located, supply has fallen more than 80% since last year.
Still, relief is hardly imminent. Stern says the plan is to break ground early in 2023,; if everything goes well, the building will top out by mid-2024. “People are craving it,” he says. “There’s insatiable appetite in Miami, and demand hasn’t waned at all.”
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