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Laquer makes big profit on sale of South Beach land

March 5, 2015

251 Washington Ave

Miami real estate broker and investor Edie Laquer had to endure some legal headaches ushering a South Beach site through the recession and she finally cashed in on a big return.

Her SoBe Second Street LLC recently sold the 13,000-square-foot vacant site at 245 to 251 Washington Ave. for $8.25 million, or $635 per square foot. Listing agents Peter Andolina and Karen Brady, of Metro 1, said that’s a record price per square foot for land in the South of Fifth neighborhood of Miami Beach. It’s about two blocks north of the famous Joe’s Stone Crab.

Laquer originally became involved with the property in 2004 when the site was purchased for $925,000 in a partnership between her and parking lot investor Jacob “Hank” Sopher. That partnership dissolved into heated litigation as Sopher and Laquer launched lawsuits against one another. Eventually, her brokerage won a judgment against Sopher and another developer for breech of contract.

Meanwhile, a bank filed a $2.2 million foreclosure lawsuit over the property in 2013. Laquer decided to take full control of the property and resolve the foreclosure by purchasing the site for $3.95 million in March 2014.

In about a year, she’s achieved a 109 percent return on that price.

The buyer was Green Card Fund LLC.

“The site is zoned for median-high density development and would be ideal for a luxury condominium or exclusive hotel,” Andolina said in a news release. “Approximately 22,750 square feet of development can be achieved on this site.”

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