Students cruise for next Miami real estate hot spot.

If you know anything about real estate in Miami, you know about the lure of Miami Beach and South Beach. Now, as the South Florida real estate market begins to show some signs of recovery, attention turns to pinpointing the next location primed for expanded development. It could well be downtown Miami along the Miami River.

To offer a closer look at the recent development and future opportunities in this area, the Miami River Commission, Miami-Dade County and FIU’s Jerome Bain Real Estate Institute hosted and sponsored a private real estate boat tour for the College of Business Administration’s Real Estate Student Association (RESA) and the FIU community.

More than 60 people participated in the real estate boat tour, sponsored by the Miami River Commission, FIU and Miami-Dade County.

According to Wendy Hernandez, chapter president, more than 60 RESA members plus other Florida International University (FIU) students, alumni and members of the local real estate community hopped aboard the “Miami Lady” for an informative river cruise narrated by Brett Bibeau, director, Miami River Commission.

Brett Bibeau, Suzanne Hollander and Pedro Garcia

“The tour explored the historic, mixed-use Miami River area, which today has more than 7,000 new residential units, marine industrial businesses, scenic parks and multicultural neighborhoods,” Hernandez said. “The discussions focused on understanding zone, land use, sustainable development, foreclosure and other relevant issues.”

The river cruise featured special guests Honorable Pedro Garcia, property appraiser and Marcus Saiz de la Mora, assistant property appraiser, both for Miami-Dade County.

William G. Hardin, director of the college’s real estate programs and RESA faculty advisor, and Suzanne Hollander, adjunct professor, were on hand to answer questions during the boat tour.

William G. Hardin and Suzanne Hollander

Cruise helps student see the area with new eyes.

Student Rafeal Lamo heard about the event in his Real Estate Finance class and is glad he decided to attend.

“I thought it would be a great opportunity to complement the theory I was learning with the reality of today’s Miami real estate market,” he said. “Seeing the buildings and waterways really give me a firsthand account. The discussions and information were great. The speakers were impressive, with each offering a particular area of expertise.”

Lamo was also motivated to join RESA, commenting that “members benefit from networking opportunities while learning how to become a real estate professional.”

Additional speakers were Luciana Gonzalez, assistant to director, City of Miami Planning Department and Sallye Jude, chair of the storm water committee for the Miami River Commission.

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