Ruskin waterfront resort to be transformed into apartments

Ruskin waterfront resort to be transformed into apartments

A New York buyer has acquired a hotel-condo resort in Ruskin with plans to transform the property into a top-tier apartment building.

ESG Kullen paid $22 million for the 154-unit Harborside Suites, Miami-based GLT Group Brokerage said Tuesday. GLT’s Sean Shahar A. Ziv represented the seller, California-based Carter Hospitality Group, in the off-market transaction.

The purchase price breaks down to $142,857 per unit. Granite Point Mortgage Trust Inc. provided a $20.6 million mortgage, according to Hillsborough County property records.

The plans to transform the resort into a rental property speak to the demand for housing in the Tampa Bay area. While the novel coronavirus pandemic briefly paused activity in the apartment sector, multifamily investors and developers were pursuing deals again by late 2020. A garden-style apartment property in Riverview recently sold for a record price for that property category.

“The Tampa Bay area is becoming one of the strongest housing markets in the nation. We anticipate the trend to increase as more people move to Florida,” Ziv said in a statement.

Harborside Suites was built as a hotel-condo in 2007, according to property records, and Carter bought the property out of foreclosure in 2012. It has 154 units — studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments with kitchens in three connected buildings — and the property amenities include three heated outdoor pools, two Jacuzzis, two fitness centers and six sports courts.

Ruskin waterfront resort to be transformed into apartments

Waterfront Hillsborough hotel to be converted to apartments

A New York multifamily investment company plans to renovate Harborside Suites in Ruskin.

Tampa Bay is about to get more apartments, though this time they aren’t being built from scratch.

Harborside Suites at Little Harbor in Ruskin, a waterfront hotel along Tampa Bay, was purchased late last month by New York investment company ESG Kullen, according to Berkadia, the mortgage broker that helped arrange the financing.

ESG Kullen’s loan amount was $20.6 million, Berkadia said. According to Hillsborough property appraiser records, the sale price for the hotel, which also contains condos, was about $20.2 million.

Specifically, the company bought 155 of the hotel’s 158 units — the final three are privately owned condos, according to Berkadia managing director Christopher Apone.

Now ESG Kullen will begin renovations to convert the property into apartments. Those will include an updated gym, paddleboards and kayaks, plus changes to the clubhouse, pool, lobby and hallways. The hotel, which was built in 2007, contains three buildings with a mix of studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom units, according to a news release. It also has access to a private beach, marina, fishing pier, three heated pools and a hot tub, plus tennis and volleyball courts.

Apone said that the conversion represents “a prime opportunity” in “a growing area with limited supply” and a high demand for rental housing.

Renovations are scheduled to begin immediately and apartments will likely be available for rent within the next three months, he said.