Higher And Higher

Apologies are in order for overusing the word “whopping” in describing some prize penthouses in local projects last week. On the scale of things, a 3,734 square foot unit can be called, large, or spacious, but it’s still puny compared to some of the mega penthouses breaking the space and price barrier in local real estate. For example, the 10,250 square foot penthouse villa with a plunge pool, that crowns the 40-floor Setai Resort and Residences in Miami Beach has just been bought by a Pennsylvania lawyer for a reported $10 million.

Other luxe digs on South Beach for sale include an 8,000 square foot, six-bedroom penthouse at the Related Group’s ICON, priced at $9.9 million. The residence occupying the top three levels of the brand new ICON tower comes complete with rooftop pool, home theatre, and two elevators serving a private lobby from four entrances. Just down the road, the Related property Murano Grande, has re-introduced a massive, never-been-lived-in, 4,500 square foot penthouse on the 38th floor featuring an 18-foot glass wall overlooking the Miami Beach marina. The master suite occupies all of the second level. Asking price: $4.2 million.

Why are buyers paying $1,000 to $1,500 a square foot for penthouses when the same sums could buy them properties in prestige locations such as Star Island, La Gorce Island, or North Bay Road?

According to realtor Kevin Tomlinson with EWM Realtors Miami Beach, buyers in this price range are purchasing their 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th home and require the highest level of service along with ultimate privacy and security — and as Tomlinson says “they also don’t want to have to worry about getting the lawn mowed!”

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