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Miamism Best Bar/Hangout – The Broken Shaker

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 18, 2014

broken shaker miami

Miamism Best Bar / Hangout

It’s a dear friend’s birthday and she suggests going to a place she heard about, where they serve “hand-crafted cocktails” – we all laugh and make a big joke out of it.  “Hand-crafted” as opposed to what exactly?  “Oh! we must try these hand crafted cocktails!”

We show up at The Broken Shaker and the place is packed!!  There are no tables, there are long lines at the bar and right when we’re giving up and about to walk out, Rick pops his head into one of the bars and asks with a loud and sarcastic tone, “Where can I get a hand-crafted cocktail?”

A super cool dude, who we later find out is one of the owners of the establishment, goes out of his way to explain the place, get us drinks, hooks us up with a table and server and even throws in free cocktails for the birthday girl.  Thanks Gabe for going out of your way and treating perfect strangers with excellent customer service!  And so The Broken Shaker makes it to the Miamism Best List.

The Broken Shaker - Miami Beach via

The place is down to earth, not at all fancy, with cool exterior, garden-like space, and very eclectic crowd – definitely not your typical snooty South Beach bar.  We do recommend that you make reservations if you want a table.

ADDED BONUS:  food is delish!!

Here’s a video about Broken Shaker’s concept – so you can understand the whole “hand-crafted” thing.  Bar Lab is behind the creation:

A great passion for the art of the crafted cocktail and its potential to transform experiences brought Elad Zvi and Gabriel Orta together in 2009 to form Bar Lab. Now an internationally recognized management company, Bar Lab specializes in precision management, market branding and the creation of innovative beverage programs.

The Broken Shaker
2727 Indian Creek Drive
(inside the Indian Creek Hotel)
Miami Beach, FL 33140


Surfside Real Estate Market Report for March 2014

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 16, 2014

Surfside Real Estate Market Report

Surfside real estate market 2012

There are currently  24  Surfside homes for sale: (5 less than last month)

  • Highest priced listing: $6,750,000 for a waterfront estate at 1236 Biscaya Dr.
  • Lowest priced listing: $499,000 $439,000 for a 3 bedroom / 1 bathroom foreclosure home at 8712 Byron Av
  • Pending Sales: 12 (4 more than last month)
  • Closed sales in March: 4 (same as last month)

The 4 Surfside homes sold in March were the following:

  • 9388 Abbott Av – listed for $975,000 and selling for $925,000 ($412/sf)
  • 8943 Emerson Av – listed for $669,000 and selling for $610,000 ($330/sf)
  • 325 92 St – listed for $595,000 and selling for $565,000 ($284/sf)
  • 9365 Byron Av – listed for $525,000 and selling for $485,000 ($261/sf)

The average sold price per square foot in March was $322, compared to the one February sale of  $311/sq.ft, January’s average of $307, and 2013′s average of $270.  Although there is a great disparity in March’s sales, price per square foot continues to increase in Surfside.  Inventory is limited which plays a huge part on how high properties sell that are ready to move in.  So if are planning to sell, in addition to calling us to list your Surfside Home, keep in mind that homes in great condition are selling much faster and for considerably more money. A good refresher of paint and finishes may really make the difference and will not break your bank.

To sell or buy your Surfside home, please contact us at


A-Rod sells his Miami Beach Condo

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 14, 2014

A-Rod sells his Miami Beach Condo

A-Rod has been the center of many Miami real estate conversations in the past few months.  First he sold his Miami Beach home for $30 Million, and now the WSJ tells us that he sold his Miami Beach Condo at Mei for $2.575 Million after purchasing it for $2.1 Million about a year ago.

mei condo miami Beach

The MLS shows it being listed for $3.2 Million on November 11th of 2013 and then reduced to $2.99 Million in January.  The description reads as follows:

Experience the art of ocean front living in this unique 3 bedroom model. Highly sought after 02 line has stunning views of both the ocean and Miami Bay from its oversize wrap around balconies. Interior design and finishes completed by world renowned Briggs Edward Solomon. Top of the line appliances include espresso maker and wine cooler. Enjoy first class resort style services with the luxurious amenities the Mei has to offer. Just minutes away from Sobe, the Design District, Bal Harbor.

A-rod's MEI condo

Mei Condo was built in 2008 and Alex Rodriguez’s residence there has 3 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms, 1,725 sf of living space with a $2,064/month condo maintenance fee.

One thing we cannot dispute, A-Rod has impeccable taste!


Kai at Bay Harbor

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 13, 2014

I am loving these new buildings in Bay Harbor Islands.  Modest, modern and the perfect scale.  Here’s a project in pre-construction with an estimated completion date of October/November of 2015.

Kai at Bay Harbor

Kai at Bay HarborKai at Bay HarborKai at Bay HarborKai at Bay Harbor  hero_5

Kai at Bay Harbor is designed by Arquitectonica with a total of 7 floors and 57 residences.  There are 1 to 3 bedroom residences available and it’s located on the North side of the east island in Bay Harbor with west exposure on the canal, overlooking single-family homes of Bay Harbor east island.

Kai at Bay Harbor Location Map

We told you about Riva Bay Harbor a few weeks ago, which is already built – but here you have another gorgeous project in an amazing location and pre-construction pricing ranging from $515,000 to $1,225,000 for designer-ready units.
Built by 3D Developers made up of 3 development groups that decided to join forces:  Brick O., Equipo 18, and Blue Sky Developers.  (From Venezuela, Ecuador, Colombia and Argentina)

Kai at Bay Harbor Residence Features

  • Glass enclosed balconies
  • European style cabinetry
  • Marble floors in baths
  • Jacuzzis in Master Baths
  • Polished granite countertops
  • Top-of-the-line appliances

Kai at Bay Harbor Building Features and Amenities

  • Pool deck and swimming pool
  • Exterior lounge areas
  • Fully-equipped fitness center
  • 24 hour front desk and concierge
  • Marina

I don’t often get excited about pre-construction projects in Miami and can still count the ones I love in one hand (The Porsche Tower , One Thousand Museum by Zaha Hadid , Beach House 8, and One Ocean South Beach.) What I love about Kai is not only the scale, but the modest pricing which will make these fly off the market.

We can send you floor plans, brochure and deposit structure upon request, just email us at

Condo Name:  Kai at Bay Harbor
Architecture: Arquitectonica<
Developer:  3D Developers
Location:  9940 W. Bay Harbor Drive, Bay Harbor Islands, FL 33154



Holy Crap!

By: Ines Hegedus-Garcia on April 11, 2014

Reviving an old septic article after inquiry from client – it’s a dirty job, but somebody has to do it!

Here’s the scenario, you are buying a Miami Beach home with a septic system and logic tells you to have it inspected – pretty straight forward up to now.  So you ask your Realtor to recommend home inspectors and you do a bit of research on your own.  You finally hire a home inspector and find out that they have to subcontract the septic inspection and you figure everything is fine….this is when it starts getting hairy.

How do you know that the subcontracted company is legit?  Better yet, how can you guarantee that they will perform an objective inspection and will not damage anything in the process?  How do you make sure that the septic company you hire will do the necessary research to locate the system and will not break a lid or destroy landscaping or God forbid be respectful of someone else’s property?

It happens to us too often and no matter how we try to foresee problems, something really wrong always happens.

  • From the company telling you that the system is damaged just so that they can get the gig <<<conflict of interest!
  • To inspector showing up unannounced, digging up half the yard, damaging lids and then claiming system is not working properly
  • To them knowing ahead of time system is older than “customary-life of septic systems” and making you pay for an unnecessary inspection that they know they will fail regardless of condition.

The list goes on an on, sadly, everyone looses, whether you are the buyer or seller of the property.  I still have not come up with a solution to this problem, and I’m sure there are reputable septic inspectors out there (just have not met them yet).  The closest suggestion I have is to first make sure that you sign an agreement with the inspector assuring them that no matter the findings, they will not be performing the job (that should cut out the conflict of interest).  Second, make them sign a release in case they damage the tank in the process (this may not be an easy task).

The easiest solution is to educate yourself about septics.  How much will it cost to replace tank and drain field?  What are the signs of a non-functioning or failing septic without even having to open lids to visually inspect?  When do you have to become concerned about a septic system?  If a septic system has a “said” life expectancy of 15 years, how come we see 50 year old septics in perfect condition?  If a septic system is supposed to be pumped out every few years, how come we see septics in perfect working condition that have NEVER been pumped out?

In my opinion, the whole septic industry is very wishy washy, and there are no objective and/or proven expert opinions out there.  The basic truth is that septics are fairly inexpensive, are low maintenance, and usually easy to fix.  There are tale tale signs that a septic is failing when a home is occupied:  sewer smell, constant backed up toilets, collapsed lids or holes in yard.  An empty house is reason for concern, but not the end of the world either.  So think about who you hire to inspect and think twice about inspecting – you may be doing more damage than good in the end.

related reading:

Aroma: Miami Real Estate’s 5th sense

Miami Beach Home Inspections Continued

*original article from June/2010