Baptist Health buys Collection Residences site in Coral Gables for $37M

Baptist Health buys Collection Residences site in Coral Gables for $37M

Property was the center of a contentious lawsuit between Ugo Colombo and Masoud Shojaee

Brian Keeley, CEO of Baptist Health South Florida, and the Collection Residences

Baptist Health South Florida just closed on a site in Coral Gables for $37 million that was at the center of a contentious lawsuit between developers Masoud Shojaee and Ugo Colombo.

Shojaee, a homebuilder, and Colombo, a developer and owner of the Collection luxury car dealership, had previously planned to jointly develop the Collection Residences on the 2.8-acre property at 250 Bird Road. They planned to build 128 condos along with retail space on the site until their partnership ended nearly three years ago and litigation pursued.

The Real Deal first reported in July that Baptist Health was under contract to buy the property, next to Colombo’s dealership and near the Shops at Merrick Park.

Avison Young’s Michael Fay, John Crotty, David Duckworth and Brian de la Fé brokered the deal.

Avison Young declined to comment on the sale and Baptist Health said it has not finalized its plans for the site.

In 2016, Shojaee’s Shoma Coral Gables filed suit against Ugo Colombo and his companies, alleging breach of contract and other charges. The suit sought between $4 million and $5 million in damages. The lawsuit alleged that Colombo sabotaged the project, “causing substantial damages to Shoma.” Colombo denied the charges. After more than two years, a Miami-Dade County judge dismissed most of the charges in August 2018.

Earlier this month, Safe Harbor Equity filed a $16.2 million foreclosure lawsuit against the joint venture that owned the Collection Residences over nonpayments. A judge recently dismissed the suit with prejudice, according to Ralph Serrano, managing director of the Miami-based lender. Now that the sale has closed, Safe Harbor Equity will get paid back the $16.2 million.

Records show Colombo and Shojaee’s joint venture paid $27 million for the property in 2013.

Baptist has been expanding throughout South Florida. It recently opened a four-story, 60,000-square-foot outpatient facility at Crescent Heights’ mixed-use development at 709 Alton Road in Miami Beach. Earlier this month, Baptist acquired a former Toys “R” Us in Royal Palm Beach for $15.8 million.

Survival of the fittest

Ugo Colombo
From the April magazine: Completing Brickell Flatiron has become Ugo Colombo’s main mission. The Italian developer, who has been involved in South Florida real estate since 1983, intends to not only sell all 548 residences in his forthcoming 64-story luxury condominium tower, but to sell them without compromise. So if a buyer wants one of Brickell Flatiron’s future residences, Colombo told The Real Deal that he or she will pay full price.
“I have never discounted one penny on one unit,” he insisted.
On March 16, Colombo officially commenced construction on Brickell Flatiron, where residential units are being marketed for between $500,000 and $2 million. Colombo claims the project is already 50 percent sold. However, he began selling residences at Brickell Flatiron two years ago, when the South Florida real estate market was still riding high. [more]

Source: The Real Deal Miami