Chicago-based LaSalle Investment Management dubs itself "one of the world’s leading real-estate investment managers," and its megaprofitable flip of Miami's most iconic skyscraper certainly proves why.
The firm announced today that it sold the Miami Tower for a cool price of $220 million. LaSalle purchased the property, then known as the Bank of America Tower, in 2010 while Miami's real-estate market was at its lowest point, for just $105.5 million. With the recent sale, the firm has more than doubled its investment.
The new owner is Sumitomo Corporation of Americas, the U.S. subsidiary of a Japanese trading conglomerate. Robert Obringer, vice president of Sumitomo Corporation of Americas Commercial Real Estate Unit, sees the purchase as a long-term investment.
"We are excited to add Miami Tower to our portfolio of commercial properties here in the U.S.,” Obringer said in a release. “As part of our constant management of assets, we are always looking for opportunities that will maximize return on investment, and this property offers a strong upside potential for in-place cash flow and the opportunity to increase value.”
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The 47-story Miami Tower was constructed in 1987 as the Centrust Tower. Pritzker Prize-winning architect I.M. Pei was brought on to design the building. At the time, it was one of Miami's first big tastes of the power of the modern "starchitect."
At the time, it was Miami's second-tallest building, but it has now fallen to eighth place. Despite being overtaken in height several times, the Miami Tower still retains it place as an icon. Its multitiered façade is routinely lit up in special colors, and the building takes center stage in the view of those driving by downtown Miami on I-95. The building's roof has also been the setting for a Gloria Estefan video, and the structure has appeared in films and TV shows such as Miami Vice and Casino Royale.
Though the tower has changed monikers along with ownership before, there's no word whether Sumitomo plans to change the name.