Two high-rise condominiums in Park Shore bring record prices
In two days, two waterfront penthouses fetched record prices in Park Shore.
One of them — at the Regent — brought $16.7 million, the highest price ever paid for a condo in Naples.
The other — at Le Parc — sold for $14.6 million, the most ever for a condo based on the square foot price. It traded for more than $2,518 a square foot.
By comparison, the condo at the Regent with the highest price to date went for less than $1,386 per square foot. It's more than twice the size, stretching more than 12,000 square feet.
The record prices are based on data pulled from the Southwest Florida Multiple Listing Service, or MLS. It does not include pocket, or off-market, listings.
The sales closed one day apart, on April 11 and 12.
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Developed by the Lutgert family in the 1970s and 1980s, the Park Shore neighborhood lies along the Gulf of Mexico, west of U.S. 41. It includes traditional single-family homes, along with many luxury high-rise condominium towers.
At 4101 Gulf Shore Blvd., the Regent's record-smashing Penthouse 3 includes five bedrooms and seven bathrooms. Features include a private elevator entrance, gourmet kitchen, gas fireplace, billiards room, in-home theatre and even a "doggy palace."
It sold April 11 after six days on the market.
The listing agents, Shirlene Elkins and John Robert with John R. Wood Properties, couldn't immediately be reached for comment.
The Earls-Lappin Team, also at John R. Wood in Naples, brought the buyer. The top-producing luxury real estate team includes Bill Earls, along with his son Aaron, and longtime partner Larry Lappin.
A "good value"
Rather ironically, Bill Earls said neither he, nor his client, were bothered by the condo's high price tag.
"It was a really good value, at the price that we paid, and we are going to do a major renovation to that," he said.
The renovation will result in a "completely different product" that's "magical," Earls said.
The condo has "tremendous upside" potential," he said, as one of the crown jewels in Naples, due to its large size and expansive waterfront views.
"It just really hasn't been treated that way," he said.
The residence offers unobstructed views of the Gulf of Mexico, Earls pointed out, which is one of its strongest selling points.
Property records show the sellers as Susan McCurry and Richard George, along with a revocable trust in her name, with a local address at Seasons at Naples Cay, a luxury high-rise tower to the north of Park Shore.
The new owner of the penthouse is an Ohio-based limited liability company, operating under the name Naples Gulf Shore.
According to state records, the company incorporated in April. The manager is listed as Christopher Semarjian, a real estate developer and owner of Industrial Commercial Properties LLC in Solon, Ohio.
Previously, the condo sold for $11.7 million in 2012.
The Earls-Lappin Team also represented the buyers in the record sale at Le Parc, located at 4951 Gulf Shore Blvd. N. The price tag reflects the condo's superior views, design and craftsmanship, following a top-to-bottom renovation, Bill Earls said.
The condo, known formally as penthouse 402, has been "brought up to speed," he said, with quality finishes and a redesign that maximizes space and views.
"It didn't bother me that my client was paying that kind of money," Earls said. "He is a very sophisticated buyer and he's not prone to overpay."
A fast sale
Husband and wife Realtors April Hoover and Jim McGinn, with John R. Wood Properties, had the exclusive listing for the condo at Le Parc.
The condo, with five bedrooms and five-and-a-half bathrooms, spans 5,798 square feet. It sold after just four days on the market.
The listing agents said it had many special features, making it more valuable than the typical condo at Le Parc. One of those features? It's one of only two penthouses in the high-rise tower that includes its own private two-plus-car garage, with storage.
"Yes, it's a hot market, but it's also the creme-de-la-creme. It was completely remodeled down to the concrete," Hoover said.
The custom cabinetry in the condo is "like fine furniture," added McGinn.
"There was not a single detail that was overlooked in the property. Even the way the floor plan was reconfigured was just beautiful," he said.
The sellers actually raised their asking price after seeing such strong buyer interest and hearing such positive feedback from Realtors, neighbors and others who traipsed through it curious to see the final product of the overhaul.
After a pending deal fell through, the condo hit the market again at the higher price, and sold in four days for the asking price.
As the northernmost high-rise on Park Shore, Le Parc, built in 1990, offers views of Venetian Bay, Clam Bay, the city and the Gulf of Mexico, up the coastline.
"You would be hard-pressed to get another one like this," McGinn said of the condo. "That's why it broke a record."
Property records show the seller as Sand Hills Le Parc 1, a Florida-based limited liability company, and the buyer as Norman Garrity, under a revocable trust in his name. Garrity is a former director and executive of Corning Inc., a multinational technology and manufacturing business, specializing in glass, ceramics and fiber optics.
The penthouse last sold for $5.2 million a little over a year ago. Mike Vitte Construction based in Naples oversaw the renovation, as the general contractor, and Theory Design in Fort Myers remastered the inside, and together they made it look "brand spanking new," McGinn said.
A fleeting opportunity
In Naples and the surrounding area, there aren't too many opportunities left to build luxury high-rises on or near the sand because so much of the land has already been claimed and developed.
That makes the existing towers all that more valuable, McGinn said.
Penthouse 4 at the Regent, built in 2002, held the previous record for the priciest condo in Naples. That condo changed hands for $15.5 million in January, so the title didn't hold long. It's the same size as Penthouse 3 and also includes a private two-plus-car garage, with storage. It sold quickly too, going under contract two weeks after hitting the market in December.
When Southwest Florida's real estate market caught fire in June 2020, following a brief pause after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic, a swarm of relocating buyers primarily sought single-family homes.
These motivated buyers looked to escape more crowded and COVID-restricted areas in other parts of the country, and moved to "garden spots," such as Florida, Earls said.
Southwest Florida has attracted its share of flee-ers not only because of its beautiful beaches and sunsets, he said, but its great schools, restaurants and cultural experiences, lower taxes and crime rates — and more laid-back lifestyle, making it a great place to live and work.
The condo market crept back slowly after the pandemic hit, as condominium living doesn't offer the same kind of room or freedoms for owners, who must abide by certain community rules and standards, he said.
"Over the last six months, it has come alive," Earls said of the condo market. "Good condos that are priced right sell pretty quickly."
Condo sales down
Yet, condo sales, in general, are trending down in Southwest Florida, which is not too surprising, considering the crazy volume of sales in 2021, and the low inventory, said real estate market expert Denny Grimes, president of his top-producing team at Keller Williams Realty in Fort Myers.
In the first quarter, condo sales declined by 30% in Lee and by 2% in Collier, over the year, he said.
"When you look at the most desirable areas of Naples, the land cost is so expensive that condos become more affordable than single-family homes," Grimes said.
Of course, the record sales seen in Park Shore this month are anything but affordable.
Drilling down into the data, Grimes said condo sales priced at $1 million and up in Collier are down by 17%, which could indicate that soaring prices in the Naples area are sending more buyers to Lee County, where housing is generally much less expensive.
"The condos that are doing the best are the ones that are on or near the water," Grimes said.
"Downtown Fort Myers hasn't picked up yet," he said. "It hasn't really started hitting home runs yet."
Lee County can't compete with Collier when it comes to high-priced condos, as it offers nothing that could even come close to $16 million — or even $14 million, Grimes said.
However, Lee has seen some high-priced condo sales this year, by its own measure.
In February, for example, a 1,620 square-foot three-bedroom, three-bath condominium within South Seas Island Resort sold for $4.25 million. Located directly on the beach, it marked the highest condominium sale to date on Captiva Island.
Here are the top five high-rise condo sales in the Naples market, according to the Southwest Florida MLS:
Regent, Penthouse 3, $16.7 million
Regent, Penthouse 4, $15.5 million
Seasons at Naples Cay, $14.75 million
Le Parc, Penthouse 402, $14.6 million
Regent, Penthouse 2, $14 million
Source: John R. Wood Properties