Developer seeks green certification for Brickell hotel project

Part condominium, part hotel,Habitat Miami gives new meaning to the term"home away from home" with lavish apartments ranging from 800- 1,200 sq. ft. that make one wonder why they'd ever book at a conventional hotel again.

Sophisticated Miami is a city that has it all: world-class shopping, finedining, stellar entertainment, unparalleled nightlife, stunning beaches and, ofcourse, a vibrant international business presence in the Brickell area that attracts people from around the globe. This results in a wide variety ofvisitors to our popular city with equally diverse needs and wishes when itcomes to what are the best accommodations for both the short- and long-termstay. One alternative to the traditional mainstream luxury hotel is Habitat Miami,which aptly bills itself as "Close to everything while feeling for from itall — a natural way of urban living."

"Weoffer spacious apartments with modern decoration at an affordable price,"says Maria Beatriz Elks, Owner It GM. "Our goal is to offer a different alternativeto clients when they are traveling for business or pleasure. We are anotheroption — a personalized condo/apartment in the Brickell area. We have all theamenities that a regular hotel doesn't have, like a fully equipped kitchen,washer/dryer, etc. This is especially important if you're traveling withchildren. We also offer full concierge services that are unique. This includespick­up and drop-off at airports and ports, groceries and more."Additionally, each apartment features a private terrace with panoramic cityviews. The complex also features a spacious rooftop sundeck with plush chaiselounges and a handy barbecue zone, as well as a well-equipped fitness facility."The Habitat Miami concept is to offer short-term, luxurious fullyfurnished rental apartments that allow you to feel at home in Brickell,"adds Patricia Campos, Head of Operations Et Logistics Department. "It's anexcellent solution for realtor's clients, international executives, familiesand vacations. Additionally, it enhances Miami living for local residents byoffering an apartment where they can stay if they are remodeling their home andalso an alternative for their out-of-town visitors."

What makes the HabitatMiami story even more interesting is that the project was not originally builtfor its present use. "Habitat Miami was a condo-for-sale building, but dueto the economy, sales were not at their best, banks increased their demands,and sales weren't closing," explains Maria Laura Navas, Head of the AccountingIt Administration Department. "So the President of Habitat Development,LLC, Santiago Vanegas, who is currently managing Habitat Miami, began tofurnish apartments for friends and family to stay at. Seeing as this conceptwas profitable we began to furnish all the apartments and search for clientsoutside of our circle of friends and family."

Despite the continuing economic downturn, Habitat Miami continues tothrive with an impressive 950/D occupancy rate since mid-2010. The reason issimple according to Patricia Campos: "People choose Habitat Miami becausewe offer luxury apartments that are comfortable and affordable. The styles wecarry through the apartments are modern and well-appointed." Amongst theirnotable features, the apartments offer fashionable Italian kitchens boastingtop-notch appliances. The one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments featurehigh-end finishes and state-of-the-art amenities throughout the entireproperty, with easy-access private covered parking available.

"It's ahome away from home. A product that thoroughly satisfies the need of theclient," adds Maria Laura Navas. Though the spacious apartments — whichrange up to a very impressive 3-bedroom/2-bath 1,226 sq. ft. completelyfurnished residence boasting a king-sized bed and 2 queen-sized beds — make onefeel about as far away as they can get from a by-comparison-cramped hotel room,the units.

Among the notable features within the apartment offerings at Habitat Ramare high-end furnishings and state-of-the-art amenities throughout the property

feature all the amenitiesone would expect of a luxury hotel including flat panel televisions, high-speedinternet access, cable/satellite television, pay movies, designer toiletries,bathrobes, full housekeeping and turndown service of the premium bedding.Hypo-allergenic bedding, cribs and rollaway beds are also available.

Location is another factor. The property is less than one mile fromMiami's Financial District, and Miami Beach and all the fun of South Beach areabout a 15-minute drive, with Miami International Airport about 10 miles away.The property's central location makes it not only convenient to Brickellbusinesses, but to the Miami Convention Center, the Port of Miami, art andhistory museums, Vizcaya, Coconut Grove and more. It's easy access to 1-95makes it a well-situated spot from which to go exploring south to The FloridaKeys or north to Fort Lauderdale and The Palm Beaches. All this adds up to aresponse that is global. "We receive many reservations from South Americaand Europe, with the greatest numbers coming specifically from Argentina andFrance," reports Campos. This continued success has led to significantexpansion plans. What's more, Habitat Miami is constantly trying to developaccording to demand. They are continually trying to add new services such asproperty management and development to cater to their clients' needs. As such,Habitat II is in the works to expand inventory by building a second tower of anadditional 33 fully furnished apartments right across from Habitat I. The newtower is scheduled for Winter 2012 along with more amenities in the form of abusiness center, cafeteria and Jacuzzi.

"Our overall goal is to constantly expand our products and improveour services," adds Campos. "We make services that cater to the needsof our clients a major priority in all that we do." In addition to thedeep and personal commitment of the design team to give guests theexclusiveness they deserve,

Habitat Miami'scentral location in Brickell means that the property is just a short distancefrom just about every South Florida attraction and destination plus, the viewsare amazingl

thisfamily-owned and operated business has an equally important commitment to thesurrounding subtropical environment by being eco-friendly.

If there's one thing the entire team at Habitat Miami would like to seereaders take away from this article it is that there are alternative solutionssuch as Habitat Miami in existence to fulfill a variety of living needs — andyou can rest assured the best is yet to camel

For more information on Habitat Miami and to inquire about their upcomingOwnership Program, call 305.859.7745 or