The View Ahead

August 31, 2020   |   Indulge

These days, the importance of what consumers purchase has become second to why they’re acquiring it in the first place. This rings most true when it comes to real estate and design.

One crucial fact cannot be ignored: details matter.

For buyers, there is now meaning in the method behind buying a property. At a time when people are living, working and entertaining at home, design elements that influence wellness, peace of mind and happiness have become part of the conversation between developer, architect and designer — and later, realtor and client. With all its lessons, 2020 has presented us with a refreshing new bottom line: retreating to the comfort of a home that you not only enjoy but can actually flourish in, is the ultimate luxury.

The Cipriani brothers’ world-class hospitality brand, Mr. C, expands into residential luxury with Mr. C Residences Coconut Grove and a partnership with Terra Group and Arquitectonica.

Sometimes the stars align and magic happens such as when two iconic Miami firms join forces with the masters of luxury hospitality, Ignazio and Maggio Cipriani, founders of the Mr. C hotel brand — their own independent hospitality concept.

The brothers are fourth-generation members of the renowned Cipriani family which operates luxury clubs and restaurants all over the world that are synonymous with excellence. The brothers launched the Mr. C brand in 2011 with the flagship Mr. C Beverly Hills hotel, deftly combining modern-day elegance and old-world European glamour. Mr. C hotels in New York and Coconut Grove came next, with the rooftop Bellini restaurant becoming an immediate favorite with discerning Miamians. While the Beverly Hills location includes five Mr. C brand private residences, the Coconut Grove project (which recently announced its groundbreaking) will be the first stand-alone residential venture. The 20-story, 118-unit development across from Regatta Park features one- to five-bedroom residences ranging from 650 to 3,645 square feet and priced from the low $600,000s to more than $5 million.

“Miami is evolving into an incredibly cosmopolitan city,” explains Ignazio Cipriani. “With New Yorkers and Los Angeles residents looking at Miami for purchasing second homes, Coconut Grove is the ideal destination for Mr. C Residences because it has that old European influence in combination with a nautical lifestyle and great services that are also appealing for families.” The concept for the new brand came easily, he says. “The hospitality business is part of our DNA and what we have been since very young. On top of my love for traveling, these were the pieces of the puzzle that formed the inspiration for this project.”

David Martin is president of Terra Group and developer of the project. “We own the property and the asset, we design, build, market and manage the property as a fullservice residential firm and Mr. C is the brand for the project from a management standpoint,” he says. “We all relate and trust each other, that’s been why this is such a successful collaboration.”

Martin also sees a strong buying trend. “There’s been a wave of empty nesters selling mansions, wanting to move into buildings with full amenities. They want a lifestyle with cultural, fitness, work spaces, cuisine and more. The Grove is peaceful and with the intensity of technology people want to come home to a sanctuary, but still want that connection to the outdoors.” Where sales were once driven by family homes, the concierge lifestyle is what buyers are lusting for. “Now that we have options for single family homes in the sky, it works,” he notes, and adds, reflecting on the past several months, "during this pandemic we realize more how important our home is not only for value propositions but having the right type of services. Mr. C offers the unique experience of having a hospitality, food and beverage brand that’s running the building."

MIAMI’S NEW GROVE

Through the decades, Coconut Grove has had its ups and downs and drastic changes of fortune and appearance — from the groovy, laid-back enclave that artists and hippies were drawn to in the 1960s to the glitzy Disco club haven it became in the 1970s — it possesses a decidedly unique allure that was present even back in the 1800s. The charming village is the oldest permanent settlement in Miami Dade County, boasting the first hotel built in South Florida by Charles and Isabella Peacock, a British couple who emigrated here in 1882. The aptly named Peacock Park is where the eponymous inn once stood.

Historically, development has always been a part of Coconut Grove, so when the architect and the developer behind Mr. C Residences both grew up in this special place, mindfulness and a view of the future take precedence. “One of the consistencies with the three of us is how important family is and how we are rooted in tradition with generations of expertise,” adds Martin. “So when we look to the future way of living we look at tech automation and innovation.”

According to Cipriani, the transition into the residential sector has been natural. “We wanted to expand the company’s horizons and present a permanent option for buyers that were looking for a perfectly-serviced lifestyle experience which they could access year round. In the transition, we didn’t lose any of our brand identity and that’s the beauty of this project. We are offering buyers all the positives of hotel-like amenities in their own private home.”

Raymond Fort, from the iconic architectural firm Arquitectonica, is the project designer and created the initial look for the tower's exterior. As previously mentioned, Fort, like Martin, also grew up in Coconut Grove and worked with the Cipriani brothers on the Mr. C hotel. He designed the tower in a way that the building fits seamlessly into the landscape. “It felt very organic to use the curves taken from a sailboat’s spinnaker,” he explains. “When it’s full of wind, every side is a different radius. That’s where we started to piece things to get curvilinear forms. We utilized elements like an abstract geometry of the nautical imagery by use of its fluid forms and the white contrasts, the window frames and warm-toned wood details. In this type of building the use of wood has to be in the right way on decking and ceilings, overall it creates a dynamic volume that appears to be in movement.”

“I always knew the Grove was the best place to live in and it has a very sophisticated, intellectual community,” Fort says with a sense of pride. “With the arrival of such a prestigious global lifestyle brand in Mr. C, with our residential concept and their belief in Coconut Grove as the ideal place to debut that connection, it is a statement that Miami has evolved to another level.”

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