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Historic apartment building listed at $5.5M

Posted On: 11-26-2012

By Darrell Hofheinz

Daily News Real Estate Writer

One of Palm Beach’s historic apartment buildings — a Mediterranean-style reminder of the real estate boom of the Roaring ’20s — is for sale.

Mizner Court, the mixed-use landmarked apartment building at 184 Sunset Ave., has been listed at $5.5 million.

Built in 1924 and offering 23 apartments above retail shops facing North County Road, the three-story building represents a rarity on the island, said commercial broker Mark Pateman.

“There’s not a lot of supply of multi-family (rental buildings for sale) in Palm Beach,” says Pateman, one of several agents marketing the property at Cushman & Wakefield’s Palm Beach Gardens office.

Facing a central courtyard, the apartments in the U-shaped building are one-bedroom, one-bathroom units of about 600 square feet each. The majority have been at least partially renovated, Pateman said.

In addition, the building offers 1,800 square feet of ground-floor commercial space divided into two storefronts. One of those has been the longtime home of the Top Cycle Palm Beach bicycle shop. The other is leased to a company called It! Weddings and Events.

The building, Pateman explained, is being promoted to potential buyers in two ways – as a standard real estate investment and as an opportunity for a Palm Beach-based business to provide on-island housing for its “executives, guests and/or staff,” according to the sales brochure.

The island’s biggest employer, The Breakers, is a few blocks south of the building on South County Road. But other island businesses might be interested as well, Pateman said, although he did not name any specific prospects.

The building has been owned since April 2010 by a limited partnership linked to real estate investment bank Conlon & Co. of Chicago. The company paid $2.9 million for the building to Warren Colnaghi, who, in turn, had purchased it for about $1.7 million in 2000.

Over the past 18 months, the latest owner has systematically renovated the overall structure and the individual apartments, Pateman said. Those improvements total more than $1 million and include roof repairs and impact-resistant windows throughout, Pateman said.

Some of those apartments were renovated after tenants’ leases expired and they moved out, he added. A dozen units have been fully renovated with new kitchens and bathrooms, and four others have been partially renovated with new bathrooms. Air-conditioning, electrical and plumbing systems also have been updated, Pateman said.

Broker Steve Hall and agent Letty Alvarez of Hall Real Estate in Palm Beach are handling leasing. Four fully renovated apartments are available for $1,350 a month, and four partially renovated units are a bit less, said Alvarez.

“We signed five leases in the last two weeks. It’s almost been one a day. It’s crazy,” Hall said, adding that the renovations have proven a major draw for renters in an already-hot market.

Top Cycle owner Patrick Poupart said the building is in better shape now than when his shop opened nearly 20 years ago.

“It’s beautiful,” Poupart said. “The apartments are gorgeous.”

Mizner Court was granted landmark-protection status by the town in 1996. According to a report prepared for that designation, the building was designed by architect Bruce Kitchell for owner Palm Beach Realty Co. The building was once known as the Biltmore Apartments.

Its architectural features include archways, columns, corbels and balconies with wrought-iron railings. The building also offers beach access a block to the east.

 

Source: Darrell Hofheinz, October 26, 2012, Palm Beach Daily News

http://www.palmbeachdailynews.com/news/news/national/historic-apartment-building-listed-at-55m/nTFZR/

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