Well, the timing is rich.
Today -- the same day that Fort Lauderdale city commissioners will vote on whether to allow the moving of a 100-year-old tree and the building of a massive, three-tower apartment complex called Marina Lofts right along the New River -- legendary Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino's real estate company announces it's moving away from that area and toward the beach.
Builders have argued for years that they just need to build more, more, more concrete things along the Riverwalk and people will come. But the reality is different.
In a news release, Marino's Michelle Farber Ross was quoted saying, "We are excited to move to one of the most trafficked areas in Fort Lauderdale. We feel the time is perfect to call the Fort Lauderdale beach our new home, especially during the high-season months. The majority of our business comes from visitors who fall in love with the area and want to take advantage of our beautiful beaches and year-round activities."
Hear that, commissioners? People like nature.
And when people can enjoy the nature, surrounding businesses don't even have to work to lure them. The news release continued:
MMD Realty's new office is located next door to Franco and Vinny's, a local family Italian restaurant owned and operated by Vinny Esposito for the last 41 years. "In season we have a line out the door with patrons waiting to be seated. We have never advertised and we still get these crowds, year after year. We are excited to have MMD Realty open next door. It will be great for the plaza and a boost to the area," says Esposito.
Ross and the partners of MMD Realty are betting on the central beach area and the arrival of establishments such as Tim Petrillo's, S3 - Sun, Surf, Sand and The Atlantic Surf Club just down the street. "The Fort Lauderdale real estate market is really seeing an up-tick now. The beach is seeing a lot of activity from developers who are applying for zoning and permits to build and take advantage of the improving market." Explains Ross, "The climate of the market has changed so drastically over the last six months. It's an exciting time in real estate. We are working with developers and are exclusively launching several new waterfront projects in Fort Lauderdale this season. Our agents are being kept very busy!"
Another boost to the Fort Lauderdale real estate market is the expansion of the Fort Lauderdale airport. Within the next five years, International travel will increase, using Fort Lauderdale as a hub for direct flights.
Looks like Asi Cymbal should have bought some property on the beach instead.
Then again... it's all kinda moot. It will all be underwater before long.