Azabu Miami Beach

Azabu Miami Beach

At SPACiO, we’re proud when exclusive brands place complete confidence in our team, and in
our abilities. Indeed, that is something we’ve earned, as we continue to exceed the design/build
expectations of many renowned companies – organizations who don’t tolerate anything less
than perfection when it comes to high-profile projects.

Azabu Miami Beach is a Japanese eatery owned by Plan Do See, a company that has operated
more than 30 bars, restaurants and other venues across Japan for more than 25 years. Located
in the Stanton Hotel, Azabu Miami Beach is led by head chef Masa, who, at 25, became the
youngest Chef De Cuisine in the company’s history and is igniting a new wave of Japanese
cuisine in Miami, one that balances authenticity and approachability. And for this restaurant,
their SPACiO experience turned out just as they expected it to.

Azabu Miami Beach features a full-service dining room, exclusive hidden sushi counter helmed
by Tokyo-trained chefs, and a classic cocktail bar showcasing sakes and over 40 imported
whiskies. SPACiO was entrusted with bringing this Plan Do See gem to life, and, as usual, we
accomplished this major initiative in meticulous fashion, with resounding success.

Mahmood Abousalem, Managing Director, Miami for Plan Do See shared, “I expected superior
quality from SPACiO, and that’s what we experienced. Yet, what was even more impressive was
how responsive the team was. No questions ever went unanswered, and they insisted on an
open dialogue throughout every phase of the project. And for a huge undertaking such as this,
that approach was invaluable.”

Art Basel Miami

TIPS TO ‘ART BASEL’ YOUR HOME

With Art Basel in town, we’d like to offer some advice for newcomers and art connoisseurs on building and retrofitting your home to create the perfect environment that will bring your valuable artwork to life.

First, we believe that there is no better time to plan a ‘gallery wall’ than when your interior designer is designing your home. As a general contractor focused on high-end homes and condo build outs, we always advise our clients to incorporate their artwork into the interior design planning process. But that advice will not apply to those who may visit Art Basel in Miami Beach and Art Miami in Wynwood, fall in love with an original piece of art and walk away as the proud owner of an original painting. As a fledgling art collector, these are some of the things you need to know:

Hanging the work: Before hanging the painting, you will need to know if your wall is built of drywall, plaster, block or wood.  Drywall is not a problem but plaster, block or wood will require screws and often anchors. In this case, we recommend hiring a professional to prevent damaging the artwork. Make sure the painting is properly framed before hanging and do not hang paintings near direct natural light – they can fade from the UV and infrared radiation.

Humidity: This is Florida after all and humidity is our biggest challenge. The humidity in your home should be kept within the 20% relative humidity (RH) range in a 24-hour period. You may want to install a dial on the wall for humidity control. Fluctuations in humidity, as well as in temperature, may cause paintings to deteriorate by expanding and contracting. Cooking and bathing produce areas of climate change in a house/condo so make sure to pick the correct wall.

Lighting: When we perform a home build out, we often start by lighting up the area where the artwork is located at the ceiling level. We might also retrofit the wall to install picture lights that bring out the colors in the painting/s. As mentioned before, continuous exposure to ultra violet rays can be damaging so minimize exposure to natural light.

2018 Design and Construction Trends to Watch

With 2017 drawing to a close, general contractors are beginning to prepare for the New Year as the real estate market continues to evolve. As a full-service general contracting firm, SPACiO Design Build is excited for the new opportunities and trends that 2018 will bring. We have gathered a few of the trends that are sure to be important drivers in the general contracting space this year.

Increased Remodeling of Single Family Homes

As existing housing inventory continues to be thin, many current owners are forced to stay put in homes that no longer fit their needs. With limited new single-family home construction coupled with shrinking inventory, owners really don’t have a choice but to pour money into their current homes to re-create their ‘new dream home.’ If you are one of them, check out Houzz’s 2018 home and design trends to watch. The most noticeable new trend is the change from granite and marble to concrete. In addition to using concrete on countertops and floors, the latest craze is to use it in furniture, decorative accessories and wallcoverings. Another trend Houzz points out is wallpaper-like backsplashes. They suggest opting for tile that looks like wood, concrete, resin, fabric and even wallpaper.

Repositioning older buildings

With the revival of Miami’s urban core, we will begin to see the reposition and retrofit of older properties, especially those which have historic value located in South Beach and Downtown Miami. Little Haiti and Little Havana will also experience a similar trend. Many of these older properties have been acquired during this cycle and investors will soon begin to turn these neglected buildings into trendy shops, co-working spaces, restaurants and so forth.. These investors are proactively looking for specialty retailers and concepts that will require more experiential designs, one that dictate a high level of creativity and innovation in the build outs.

Hotels Updating Rooms

In 2016, the South Florida region added more than 1,000 hotel rooms in 2016 and another 1,300 hotel rooms are expected to open in 2017 and 2018, according to a Sun-Sentinel article. While general contractors have been busy building out the new rooms, in the new year we expect to see general contractors upgrading existing hotels in order to compete with the new generation of hotel rooms. In the past, hotels would make renovations to upgrade their look, but now they are changing renovations to meet travelers’ new preferences, desires and expectations in order to influence booking behavior. The industry is increasingly seeing hotels cater to the Millennials by focusing on health and wellness, or creating more social spaces. That is reflected in the type of remodeling we are often hired to do for hotel owners and operators.

Up Close and Personal with Powerhouse Residential Broker Dora Puig

SPACIO Design Build is very proud of real estate brokers who succeed in the challenging Miami real estate market. We applaud Miami Beach-based Luxe Living Realty Owner Dora Puig and want to share a portion of a recent Q&A with the South Florida Business Journal.

How did you get into the real estate business?

As a total fluke. I wanted to be on the business side of the entertainment business. I moved out to Los Angeles. I was one of nine MBAs recruited in the international business division of Columbia Pictures. Then Sony bought Columbia. The MBA recruits were all on hold for jobs. I did the craziest jobs in the world while waiting. I worked for a retail company. I worked on movie production sets. I worked on commercials as a production assistant. I started working for Harvey Rice with Alvarez, Hyland and Young, one of the big boutique brokers in LA. He was the top-producing broker in the firm. That was the first time I’d seen so many woman executives be successful. I wanted to sell because I loved it. I partnered up with Ryan Hilckmann, and we worked for Fred Sands. I got into the top offices in Beverly Hills because he was my partner.

Why did you decide to start your own firm?

We sold out Bristol and Santa Maria. And then I went to work for Fortune International Realty, back to general real estate. I got hired to run sales at the Bath Club in Miami Beach. Then I decided I didn’t want to be in-house for a developer anymore, and started my own brokerage company.

How do you compete with the large national real estate firms?

I got used to a boutique setting, and that is where I’m at my best. I’m a meat-and-potatoes relationship broker. Some new brokers are internet-savvy tech agents. I’m on the internet because I have to be. I come from the age of getting referred.

What advice would you give to a female broker who wants to become a firm owner?

I got really good at marketing from being a director of sales and marketing for a big developer. If you understand a media budget and the components of a full-fledged marketing campaign, then you can run your own company. Accept the fact that you have to spend money to make money. You can’t just list properties on the MLS and expect to sell. I do websites for each property. I have a social media team. I do VIP broker events at top listings.

When clients can seek you out 24/7, where do you go to find quiet time?

Sometimes I jog the Venetian Islands, where I live, at sunset. Then I go to my gazebo in my backyard and I meditate there and I’m at peace with myself. I leave the phone inside.

To read the entire article visit: https://www.bizjournals.com/southflorida/news/2017/11/21/executive-profile-dora-puig.html

For Europeans, Miami now about real life, not just tourism

Miami Today features Alex Wertheim in their special section on the good life and luxury in Miami in the paper’s print edition from November 8, 2017. Click the link below to read the full article as it appears in print.

11.8.17.Miami Today. Good Life

Congratulations to Arquitectonica Co-Founders on receiving ULI’s Lifetime Achievement Award

Our team would like to congratulate Arquitectonica co-founders Bernardo Fort-Brescia and Laurinda Spear for receiving the very prestigious Urban Land Institute’s Lifetime Achievement Award. These amazing architects have truly transformed Miami’s skyline and created a brand for our city.

From the Atlantis condominium, featured in the opening credits of Miami Vice, to the recently built Brickell City Centre, Arquitectonica is one of Miami’s most important architecture firms. The firm continues to contribute impeccable work to Miami’s evolving urban landscape.

As Related Group’s Jorge Perez said in a video honoring this couple, “they have a unique ability to successfully mix modernity with light and water. When you look at Miami, you see tropical modernity and the image that Arquitectonica has created.”

As a general contractor, it’s always an honor and privilege to bring the vision of incredible architects like Bernardo and Laurinda to reality. Working with visionaries such as them helps the SPACiO team push boundaries to reach a higher level of sophistication and craftsmanship in our work. We look forward to Bernardo and Laurinda’s future projects, as they never stop surprising us.

Outdoor Kitchens Take Your Home to the Next Level

With cooler temperatures now among us, the weather is perfect in South Florida for outdoor parties and eating outside. We are the outdoor kitchen’s biggest fan. They can take your luxury home to the next level, allowing you to experiment with colors and styles that may not align with the interior of your home. Before you draw up the blue prints, there are some factors, as highlighted in the following Mansion Global article, you need to consider to make an outdoor kitchen a functional yet stylish place to entertain.

Consider the logistics

“If you’re on the ocean, understand that every metal—even stainless steel—will eventually rust to some degree, so it needs maintenance. It should be cleaned and protected at least seasonally to extend the life. Think of the house as being in a salt bath all the time. Countertop materials have to be able to withstand sun exposure, so natural stones and concrete work well; whereas many composite materials break down in UV.

“One of the biggest decisions is whether you wantyour guests to be involved with the cooking. Are you doing the cooking and want to be part of the party? Or, do you have staff that would function better elsewhere? Travel distance (and routes) from cooking to serving to cleanup also need to be thought through.

“Subtle lighting is best—you can function with a lot less light than you might think. If your outdoor space is too bright, you might as well be inside. Outdoor spaces tend to get a lot of spillover light from the inside of the house. The goal is to have lounge lighting, not surgical suite lighting.”

Define the space

“The outdoor kitchen is an area where you can play and experiment, but it should still mix with the rest of the aesthetic inside the home to create a cohesive story. This might be a good place to try out a funky tile that you’ve been eyeing, or brass hardware, but don’t go crazy with a scheme or vibe that doesn’t match the interiors.

“Functional furniture is key for an outdoor entertaining area, but that doesn’t mean it should sacrifice on style. Focusing on durable perennial fabrics and the right sealants and treatments for wood and stone will keep the area useable and durable over time.

“Bistro lights or large hurricane candles in tall pillars create ambient lighting, as do tea light candles around the table. As for wired lighting, be sure to install dimmers to set the mood—that’s half the point of eating outside.

“Materials like stainless steel, concrete, quartz, and caesarstone are durable, easily cleanable materials that can hold up to the weather.”

Work out the details

“The more trips you can reduce between your outdoor space and your main kitchen, the better. Key elements include a sink and faucet, two mini fridges—one for beverages and one for food—and a grill with ample prep space. My favorite one is from Caliber Appliances—the lid folds all the way back and goes flush with the countertop. It’s very sleek and unintrusive.

“Consider a unit that’s mobile to give you more flexibility. I recently collaborated with Brown Jordan Outdoor Kitchens and Dekton to design my vision for the ultimate outdoor kitchen. Its freestanding modular design includes plenty of storage on both sides of the kitchen to keep counter space clear, allowing it to be a gathering spot from all sides for both guests and the chef—sort of like an island.

“Just be sure it’s at least 10 feet from your pool. No one wants their steaks or cocktails splashed with pool water.”

Fashion Designer Giorgio’s Announcement This Week Compelled Us To Look Back

Last week, Italian fashion designer Giorgio Armani unveiled his succession plan, which is in place to preserve and protect his legacy, a fashion empire, after the 83-year-old designer dies.

The news of this plan led us to pause and reflect on how fortunate SPACiO has been to work closely with Armani through the Residences by Armani Casa project in Sunny Isles.

As a boutique, highly specialized general contractor, we were trusted with building the development’s luxurious Armani Casa sales center. Armani is hands-on, and he was responsible for the interior design of the luxury condo high-rise.

The sales center was built to resemble one of the tower’s most expensive units, featuring high-quality finishes and materials imported from Italy. It was not uncommon for Armani to walk into the sales center while it was under construction to check the quality of our work, and to ensure that it was in line with the integrity of his brand.

The build-out included precise work, such as the inclusion of book-matched stone flooring installed in complex radiuses.

Armani hand-picked all furniture and materials for use in the build-out of the sales center. Our experience with Armani, his complex designs and luxurious taste, allowed us the opportunity to sharpen our craftsmanship skills. Today, we are a more seasoned general contractor firm thanks to our experience working under Armani’s guidance.

We look forward to seeing many more years of his design genius.

Behind the Scenes: Building an Urban Oasis in the Heart of Miami’s Brickell Financial District

Surrounded by the elegant and majestic high rises of Brickell Ave, stands 1525 S. Miami Avenue, a luxury custom home we built in the heart of the Brickell Financial District. It was an exciting and challenging project for our custom homes division since it required not only the demolition of the previous residence but also building the exterior and interior of the new house. We never would’ve been able to build a modern home that’s warm and charming in the heart of the concrete jungle without the great creativity of our team and amazing relationship with our client. This job required a lot of coordinating and collaborating with the client, architect and sub-contractors from demolition of the old structure to the completion of the new 2-story home with a rooftop. The challenges we conquered included building a 6,000-square-foot home on a very narrow 7,500-square-foot lot. This called for the SPACiO team of experts to analyze the set backs required by the city to produce a luxury home of this size. Miami’s urban core is running out of land, which makes it increasingly difficult for general contractors to do more with little space.

The planning was crucial in this project, which allowed the team to accomplish the project more efficiently. Another crucial component was being the liaison between the client, architect and sub-contractors to ensure that everyone was on the same page and ensure that SPACiO was turning everyone’s vision into reality. This involved holding weekly meetings from the pre-construction stage all the way through to post-construction stage.

The next step in the project involved building out the interior. We used Porcelanosa products  throughout the entire house, including the flooring, bathrooms, cabinetry, faucets, wall coverings and fixtures. We also built a stunning glass atrium in the entryway. Following the interior, we built the pool and pool deck as well as the rooftop that is surrounded by the Brickell skyline. It has an outdoor kitchen and a seven-person Jacuzzi. The team also installed an intricate AV system throughout the house and customized electronic gates on the outside of the house. It’s truly a gem among the skyscrapers and condo towers that line Brickell.

Building custom homes often turn into nightmares for owners if they don’t hire the right general contractor. We take pride in producing high quality craftmanship and are committed to helping owners have a positive experience. Our entire team is there from the beginning to help the owner feel at ease to make decisions. We assign a team leader to communicate and coordinate with all the sub-contractors’ schedules so the owner always knows where we are in the process. We over communicate and report the project’s status and provide our clients with a detailed timeline and weekly update including photos or videos as needed. We are here to make the process as painless as possible.

Give us a call to find out how we can help you build your dream home.

Tips for Rebuilding Following Weather-Related Events

As Puerto Ricans, Floridians and Texans begin to rebuild their homes and communities from the damage caused by Hurricanes Maria, Irma and Harvey, we’d like dedicate a blog post offering advice to homeowners and business owners on how they can rebuild following catastrophic weather-related events. Although no one wants to get hit by a hurricane, having to rebuild or do major repairs is an opportunity to upgrade your home and, in some instances, your quality of life. Here are some tips from General Contractor Alexander Wertheim, president of SPACiO Design Build.

 Remove Sheetrock, Insulation and Flooring Immediately

If your home is damaged by flooding or storm surge, you need to remove your sheetrock and insulation as soon as the water recedes to prevent mold. You should also remove flooring such as carpet or hardwood floors if you can’t dry them out. Tile is the best since you only need to clean it. If you’re on a tight budget, you can rip out the drywall yourself but we would recommend hiring a professional general contractor to tape and float it.

Hiring a General Contractor

While you can do some of the work yourself such as ripping out the drywall, you will most likely need to hire a general contractor to help you rebuild. You should be careful of scams that often follow hurricanes. Everyone and their mother will slap a magnet on the side of their truck and say they are a general contractor. We suggest checking licenses online, asking for references and even doing a site visit to look at the contractor’s prior work. Make sure the contractor holds liability and workers’ compensation insurance, and you are added as an additional insured on any policy while work is being done on your site. If a bank is involved, it should name the bank as well.

Opportunity to Renovate and Upgrade

You can upgrade to higher-end cabinets in your kitchen and bathrooms if they suffered from water damage. If you need to remove the sheet rock, think about adding French or sliding glass doors to the backyard or throughout the house where there used to be a wall, or expanding the kitchen and closets. It’s also a good time to update to PVC piping if your current home or business has lead, copper or steel pipes as well as renovate the electric wiring throughout your home and adding an AV system. Lastly, you can think about creating a smart home.

Fortifying your Home and Business

As you rebuild and renovate your home or business, you should consider updating your home with the latest storm proof materials. It would a good time to install hurricane impact windows and reinforced and wind resistant garage doors. For a comprehensive list of the products available, read this article titled “8 ways to protect your home against tornadoes and hurricanes.”