Art Basel Miami Beach, the art fair of art fairs that has grown into a weeklong affair with shows and ancillary events, is back for the first time since 2019. And the real estate industry expects take advantage of the influx of high net worth individuals. in town to buy expensive art.
Developers and brokers hold pop-up art exhibitions in their sales centers, initiate sales for new projects, sponsor fairs, and host cocktail parties for potential buyers and real estate agents. But many say they are selective about what events they plan to host.
“What we really focused on this year is putting our agents and our projects in front of the demanding clientele of Art Basel,” said Jay Parker, CEO of Douglas Elliman Florida. “People seem to be eager to travel, to be with others, to buy everything, including art. I think it’s going to be a really, really powerful year.
Miami Art Week, which includes Basel, Art Miami, Red Dot, Spectrum and many other shows, returns weeks after the lifting of the United States travel ban in 33 countries, which has sparked renewed interest for South Florida, where restrictions have been scarce throughout the pandemic. Even the advent of the omicron variant shouldn’t be a deterrent.
Public art exhibits abound in Miami Beach and Miami. In the Miami Design District, outdoor installations include two oversized sculptures bearing Louis Vuitton’s spring / summer collection in an oversized chess set designed by the late Virgil Abloh. Nearby, Chanel has commissioned a sculptural maze designed by artist Es Devlin with light and audio recordings, as well as more than 1,000 plants, shrubs and trees that will be replanted in Miami-Dade County.
To increase exposure to the growing pipeline of new condo projects, developers and other industry leaders are hosting invitation-only events.
On Tuesday, developer Carlos Rosso and Executive Chairman of Standard International, Amar Lalvani, previewed their recently launched Standard Residences at the Standard Hotel in Miami Beach.
Douglas Elliman is once again sponsoring Art Basel Miami Beach, with a property showcase in the Collector’s Lounge where VIP attendees of the fair can gather.
Elliman has also moved his annual champagne toast to David Martin and Russell Galbut’s all-new Canopy Park Project Five Park, and will host a small event when registering at the One Thousand Museum designed by Zaha Hadid, Parker said.
Galbut President Martin and Elliman Howard Lorber will host at least one other event at Canopy Park: a cocktail and three-course dinner by an Los Angeles-based chef to kick off the December issue of Cultured Magazine.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices EWM Realty is a sponsor of Art Miami, which is housed in a temporary structure at the former Miami Herald site, just north of the Perez Art Museum Miami. The brokerage, previously affiliated with Christie’s, has long sponsored the Miami mainland art fair.
One Sotheby’s International Realty is hosting an exhibition in its Miami Beach office with the International Archives of Women Photographers, as well as other events that its agents, their clients and more than 50 Sotheby’s affiliates can attend.
Property Markets Group will host a private cocktail party in the 11,000-square-foot Miami Downtown Mall for the Waldorf Astoria Residences Miami on Friday night. The event, by invitation only, will host three wealth management family offices alongside PMG partners, according to a spokesperson for the project.
Bel Invest, the developer of the Diesel-branded condominium in Wynwood that recently kicked off sales, will host an art exhibit by rapper and art collector Westside Gunn on Thursday evening, featuring works by Mariella Angela, at the center sale of the project.
Moishe Mana, one of the largest private landowners in downtown Miami and Wynwood, has his annual birthday party. This year, Mana’s birthday party takes place on Saturday night at the old RC Cola factory at 550 Northwest 24th Street in Wynwood.
The return of Art Week comes as the spotlight on Miami has intensified during the pandemic. South Florida has seen a huge increase in real estate purchases by out-of-state buyers as companies relocate from high-tax markets such as California and New York. On top of that, large restaurant groups have also spread to Miami.
“In my experience, Art Basel and Art Week are great celebratory moments in our city,” said Alicia Cervera Lamadrid, Managing Partner of Cervera Real Estate. “The [real estate] business is generally done in the following weeks.
Tech companies, many of which have moved or opened outposts in Miami, are joining the action at Art Week, adding to an already busy week.
“You compete with so many other events,” said Christine Martinez de Castro, who oversees sales and marketing for Ugo Colombo’s CMC group. “People have to choose between four, five, six events. If you overdo it, it gets lost in the shuffle.
CMC, which is developing the Onda residences in Bay Harbor Islands, has chosen to forgo the organization of major events. Instead, the sales team will focus on networking at art fairs and other events. Sales have been supported by a number of new developments, which is probably one of the reasons some companies are more picky. At Onda, presales have exceeded 60% since launch earlier this year.
“Obviously, we all want to grab the attention of people who come to Art Basel,” said Edgardo Defortuna, CEO of Fortune International Group, whose company manages Onda sales, among other projects. “It’s a showdown, in a way.”
Fortune is expected to begin selling the Ritz-Carlton-branded towers in Pompano Beach soon, where it is partnering with Oak Capital to develop the site. A number of other launches are underway, sources say, as the market for new condominiums in Miami continues to see strong demand.
“Our agents have been quite busy, frankly,” said Parker of Elliman. “I don’t think this week is busier than any other week, except that it’s an opportunity to engage with new potential customers, and we use it as a showcase to do so.”