Rents on Lincoln Road have been blowing through the roof—now the retail road is the site of the second largest real estate transition in the entire county. That’s right, a sale of $370 million to Spanish billionaire and creator of Zara, Amancio Ortega only comes in second in Miami-Dade. The section of Lincoln is between 1001 and 1035 Lincoln Road and includes the new Apple Store, Athleta, Intermix, Gap, and a as-yet-unopened Nike store that comprise 48,000 square feet of land for a rate of about $7,700 per square foot of land. High as it sounds, the sale is a drop in the bucket for Ortega, who Forbes rates the fourth richest person in the world and worth an estimated $68 billion.
The real estate developers-slash-investors who sold the property, Jonathan Fryd and Michael Comras, bought it back in 1999 for what was then a princely sum of $12 million. “Jonathan Fryd said to The Miami Herald “We’ve invested in these properties for 16 years, and I believe Lincoln Road has come a long way and is in excellent shape. We’ve created a tremendous amount of value and now is a perfect time to sell for us.” We agree.
Lincoln Road has a long history of boom and bust, but most recently, it was a quiet “artist street” in the early nineties with a few quirky restaurants, galleries, independent shops and bars. By the aughts, it was booming with new businesses even though many locals bemoaned the arrival of chain stores (the first few were VIctoria’s Secret and Gap). Big names have equaled big money for Lincoln Road landlords, however.
Sadly, the rise has seen the loss of many of spots that made Lincoln popular to begin with, like the ivy-covered Van Dyke Cafe, which is now a Lululemon Athletica. Despite these changes to larger commercial names, Lincoln has remained popular with tourists, for whom Lincoln Road has become a must-see destination. In fact, the foot traffic alone on Lincoln has become the main selling point for corporations, who view the impressions their store-fronts as equal in importance to actual in-store sales. This puts Lincoln Road on par with the Champs Elysee and Time Square, where companies see retail stores as living ads with rents that surpass than the revenue locations can bring in.