In a bid to further tap markets abroad, Cervera Real Estate has hired Frank Peng as its new vice president of Asian business development. Peng is a veteran of the cruise industry, where he helped leisure giants like Royal Caribbean International and Norwegian Cruise Line expand their businesses as a corporate strategist. Most recently, he started his own firm facilitating Chinese investment with a focus on U.S. real estate. His new role at Cervera will be much the same: Peng will lean on his existing contacts to bring in business for the brokerage. He’ll also help lay the groundwork for Cervera to open a pipeline to China, making sure that a potential buyer’s cultural needs are met, Jesse Ottley, Cervera’s president for development sales told The Real Deal. The hire comes amidst economic turmoil in Asia, where a volatile stock market has brought the health of China’s economy into question. That in turn has bred fear of Chinese investment dollars drying up after two years of heavy outflow into U.S. markets like New York City. Ottley said the opposite could be true. He said the “true motivators” — security, quality education for their children and economic stability — will continue to drive Chinese buyers into the U.S. “The second there was a bump in the markets we saw a significant jump in interest,” Ottley said. “For the real buyer, this country represents tremendous stability.” In Miami, brokerages and developers had turned their attention toward China as a possible replacement for weakening South American markets — though the region has not yet seen the flood of activity that New York has. Cervera’s Peng hopes to change that. He said in a news release that he’ll work to improve Miami’s popularity among Asian buyers, enough so to rival major markets like San Francisco and New York City.
The entire 26th floor of the north tower at the St. Regis in Bal Harbour is on the market for $28 million. It’s also for sale as three separate units, for $12 million, $11 million and $6 million, totaling $29 million, said Cervera Real Estate CEO Veronica Cervera Goeseke, who has the listing. “It’s one of the rare opportunities where you can buy an entire floor in South Florida,” Cervera Goeseke told The Real Deal. In all, the full-floor condominium has 13 bedrooms, 13 bathrooms and five half-baths, with panoramic views of the ocean and Intracoastal Waterway, according to the listing. The 14,420-square-foot property, which includes units 2601N, 2602N and 2604N at 9705 Collins Avenue, also has 4,323 square feet of terraces. The price breaks down to $1,942 per square foot. “It can work well for a family, and it’s a great way to have the ability to have the family together, and have their own apartments,” Cervera Goeseke said. Cervera Real Estate had handled pre-construction sales and marketing for the St. Regis four years ago, with sales totaling $1.2 billion, she said.
Alicia Cervera speaks to the Wahshington Post regarding the state of the market , what $50 million can buy, and the potential of Chinese buyer's entering the Miami market. According to Alica Cervera. “I’ve been one of the holdouts,” said Alicia Cervera, managing partner of Cervera Real Estate and a member of the board of directors of Miami’s Downtown Development Authority. “I’ve been one of those who’s been saying, ‘China is a long way away. There’s lower-hanging fruit,’ and not really jumping on the China bandwagon all that quickly.” No longer, she said. “I do believe we’re at the tipping point and that there’s going to be a very strong presence of Chinese buyers in the Miami market.”
The influx of new building designs and cash buyers in Miami are two ways in which the pre-2008 real estate cycle has shaped the city’s market today, Alicia Cervera of Cervera Real Estate told StreetEasy in a video. Cervera said Miami is likely the most underleveraged city in the U.S., in that there are relatively no borrowed funds.