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Big shout out to everyone who joined us at our 2023 ULI Pitching Caribbean Capital or Shark Tank last week. It was a great event with over 50 people live and many others who joined on-line throughout the Caribbean. Big shout out to Akerman LLP for hosting this event.
The selected project winners brought forth an excellent offering, each with its unique set of opportunities and financial highlights. Brad Lamensdorf at Sandy Point in Turks and Caicos, Andrew Carlson, CRRP, CRX, CSM, CLS / Nathan Whigham in the Town Center at Palmas del Mar, Puerto Rico, and Kevin Kirk/ Sabeen Minns in Palma Isabela also in Puerto Rico.
The event would not have been possible without our esteemed panelists Adam Lipkin, The C-PACE Guy™, Yrene Tamayo – Lambert, Benjamin Hedrick, and Joaquin A. Mojica, P.E.
Lastly, I would like to thank everyone who worked so hard to make this event possible, Amanda Staerker, Stephanie Wade, and Patricia Nader. Special shout out to Sydney Ramirez, AICP Ramirez who organized everything on behalf of ULI, Mallory Barker, and of course our Executive Director Julie Medley.
#uli is the world’s oldest and largest network of real estate and land use experts, and we currently boast 45,000 global members. Our #ULISEFloridaCaribbean district council includes over 1,300 people and covers over 300 different Caribbean islands.
Opportunities and Trends Shaping the Future of HospitalityContinue reading
Miami, Florida – June 15, 2023 – Banesco USA proudly announces the successful hosting of author Adam Greenfader for a captivating discussion on his recently released book, “Why Puerto Rico Now: A Masterplan For Resurgence, Resiliency, and Long-Term Economic Growth.” The event took place at the new Banesco USA Headquarters in Doral, Florida.
Greenfader’s book release resonated with the audience as it draws inspiration from his personal experience of enduring climate-related tragedies. The timing of the book launch, coinciding with the five-year anniversary of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the most devastating climate disasters in Puerto Rico’s modern history, added significant relevance and importance to the discussion. In “Why Puerto Rico Now,” Greenfader passionately emphasizes the urgent need for innovative approaches to rebuild Puerto Rico and establish a sustainable economic model that will benefit future generations.
With his extensive experience of 25 years participating in investments of over $1 billion in residential, hospitality, and commercial developments on the island, Greenfader emerged as a devoted advocate for Puerto Rico. His efforts in organizing investment events, online seminars, and promotional publications received praise and support.
“Why Puerto Rico Now” received enthusiastic reception from the audience, which included top industry professionals in finance, construction, real estate, law, and service industry. The highly anticipated conversation between Adam Greenfader and Rodrick Miller, the President and CEO of the Miami-Dade Beacon Council, was an immense success. Held at the Banesco Headquarters, the discussion explored various captivating topics, including opportunities in finance, real estate, fintech, and other related subjects. Attendees were treated to valuable insights, expert perspectives, and thought-provoking discussions, empowering them with the knowledge to navigate the island’s evolving landscape with confidence.
Banesco USA’s unwavering commitment to fostering collaboration, innovation, and the exchange of ideas was prominently displayed through the resounding success of this event. The event served as a platform for diverse perspectives, expert insights, and forward-thinking solutions to be shared and discussed.
By orchestrating a gathering of industry leaders and facilitating an open and dynamic dialogue, Banesco USA showcased its steadfast dedication to supporting the long-term economic growth of Puerto Rico and its people. The bank’s commitment to collaboration, innovation, and the exchange of ideas reverberated throughout the event, leaving a lasting impact on participants and reinforcing Banesco USA’s role as a catalyst for positive change and long-term prosperity
Adam Greenfader is a respected business leader, speaker, and forward-looking thinker. As the chairman of AG&T, a real estate development and advisory firm based in Miami, Florida, he specializes in residential, hospitality, and island projects. Adam, along with his wife, lived in San Juan for 25 years, where they raised their two children. Passionate about the intersection of blockchain and real estate, sustainable development, and resilient communities, Adam Greenfader has long been associated with the Puerto Rico Builders Association and currently chairs the Urban Land Institute’s Caribbean committee in Southeast Florida.
For more information about the book “Why Puerto Rico Now,” please visit www.whypuertoriconow.com. The book and Audio Book is available at amazon in paperback as well as in audio format, narrated by the author himself.
Navigating Past the Storms: Sint Maarten Resilience Amidst Hurricanes and the Covid-19 Crisis
The Hurricanes of 2017
In September of 2017, Sint Maarten was slammed with a category five (5) hurricane. The hurricanes caused billions of dollars’ worth of property damage and lost-lives. The Hurricane had a devastating impact on Sint Maarten’s economy. By 2018, tourism plummeted to -56% from the previous year. According to The United Nations (UN), the estimated damage was $10 Billion. It took more than two-years of rebuilding and recovery efforts for Sint Maarten’s economy to start-up again.
The COVID19 Pandemic
Just about the time, Sint Maarten was starting to recover from the hurricanes The COVID19 Pandemic brought an almost 100% shut down to Sint Maarten’s economy. According to the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association, an estimated 75% of hotels were forced to close in the wake of the crisis, leading to an immense loss of revenue. The economy contracted by an estimated -17.9% in 2020, with major impacts on fiscal revenues. There also was a significant increase in the cost of living due to the rise in prices for food, housing, energy, and healthcare. This abrupt halt in tourism activities left many businesses, including restaurants, tour operators, and local artisans, struggling to survive.
Unemployment and Migration:
With the closure of hotels and the cessation of cruise ship operations, the repercussions reverberated throughout the labor market. The lack of employment opportunities compelled thousands of individuals to leave the islands in search of alternative means to support themselves and their families.
Government Response and Support:
The Sint Maarten Government swiftly recognized the urgency of the situation and implemented various measures to mitigate the economic impact. Stimulus packages were rolled out to provide financial relief to affected individuals and businesses. These packages included wage subsidy programs, grants, and low-interest loans aimed at preventing further job losses and stimulating economic activity.
Road to Recovery:
Despite the immense challenges faced by Sint Maarten, today there are strong signs of resilience and recovery. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Sint Maarten projects a strong tourism recovery in 2023 with an expectation of 5% growth. Economic activity is anticipated to recover to pre-hurricane/pandemic levels with a 1.4 Billion GDP in 2023 and per capita GDP of $32,000 USD.
The Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) continues with its ongoing reconstruction and is expected to be complete by 2024. According to Tourism Analytics, total airport arrivals were 416,209 people or almost 65% of 2019 levels.
A new record for cruise ship daily arrivals was set for St Maarten on January 17, 2023 with 30,349 people. Projections for 2023 are for 1.1 MM passengers and back to stabilized levels of 1.5MM for 2024.
According to data by the Saint Martin Hospitality & Trade Association, as of December 2022, there are approximately 2,231 hotel and time share units on the island. Hotel occupancy has been steadily increasing with record occupancy of 71% in 2022 and ADR’s at peak or above peak levels.
There appears to be a positive shift post COVID19 in terms of the seasonality of Caribbean travel. The summer season, which is normally the low season, has seen a significant increase in occupancy in 2021 and 2022. This occupancy increase has been primarily from family travel seeking destinations more affordable and closer to home (US/Canada).
Length of Stay
The length of stay has increased post COVID19 as travelers continue to blend leisure with business – “bleisure”.
Sint Maarten’s resilience in the face of the 2017 hurricanes and the Covid-19 pandemic is a testament to its people and determination. Despite the devastating impact of these crises, the island has made significant strides in rebuilding its economy. With government support and stimulus packages, Sint Maarten has seen a strong rebound in tourism, reflected in increased hotel occupancy and the resumption of cruise ship activities. Projections for 2023 indicate a robust recovery, with anticipated growth in tourism, a recovering GDP, and positive trends in seasonality and length of stay. Sint Maarten’s ability to adapt and rebuild offers hope for a prosperous future and a testament to the resilience of the Caribbean region as a whole.
If you are interested in learning more about the Caribbean, join us at this years’ CHRIS conference in Coral Gables, Florida from May 22-25, 2023.
AG&T is a real estate development and consulting company founded in 1998 with headquarters in Miami, Florida. Our track record spans over 55 real estate development projects in Puerto Rico, Sint Maarten, Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico, Dominican Republic, and various other Caribbean islands. www.agandt.com
AI = ?
The below is a first draft of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) article written on Chat GPT. It was written in 10 seconds with a simple prompt: “Please write an article on Adam Greenfader”.
Bottom line: While the below noted captures some of Adam Greenfader’s personal and business characteristics, it is light on details and very heavy on flattery.
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Adam Greenfader: A Visionary Entrepreneur Shaping the Future
In the fast-paced world of entrepreneurship, individuals with a unique blend of vision, creativity, and resilience stand out from the crowd. Adam Greenfader is one such remarkable entrepreneur who has made a significant impact in various industries through his innovative ideas and relentless pursuit of success. With his exceptional leadership skills and forward-thinking approach, Greenfader has emerged as a prominent figure in the business world, leaving an indelible mark on every venture he undertakes.
Born with an innate curiosity and an entrepreneurial spirit, Adam Greenfader displayed an exceptional aptitude for business from a young age. His journey began with a humble start, as he launched his first business venture while still in college. This initial foray into entrepreneurship laid the foundation for his future endeavors, as Greenfader learned valuable lessons about the challenges and rewards of running a business. One of the key attributes that sets Greenfader apart is his ability to identify emerging trends and capitalize on them. He possesses an astute understanding of market dynamics and consumer behavior, enabling him to spot opportunities where others may see obstacles. This foresight has been instrumental in his success across diverse industries, ranging from technology and finance to real estate and entertainment.
Greenfader’s ventures have consistently pushed the boundaries of innovation, disrupting traditional business models and introducing groundbreaking concepts. Whether it be launching a tech startup that revolutionizes the way we communicate or investing in sustainable real estate projects, his ventures always reflect a deep commitment to pushing the envelope and driving positive change. Beyond his entrepreneurial pursuits, Adam Greenfader is known for his philanthropic endeavors and dedication to making a difference in the world. He recognizes the importance of giving back to society and has actively supported various charitable initiatives. Through his philanthropic work, he aims to address pressing social issues and contribute to the betterment of communities.
One of Greenfader’s notable achievements is his commitment to environmental sustainability. Recognizing the urgent need for eco-friendly solutions, he has championed several initiatives focused on renewable energy and green technologies. His dedication to creating a more sustainable future has earned him recognition and accolades within the industry. As a leader, Greenfader inspires those around him with his infectious enthusiasm and unwavering belief in his ventures. He fosters a culture of innovation, encouraging his teams to think outside the box and challenge the status quo. His leadership style emphasizes collaboration and open communication, enabling his teams to thrive and achieve remarkable results.
Looking to the future, Adam Greenfader shows no signs of slowing down. With each new venture, he continues to demonstrate his entrepreneurial prowess and ability to adapt to a rapidly evolving business landscape. He remains committed to making a positive impact, both through his entrepreneurial endeavors and philanthropic work. Adam Greenfader serves as an inspiration to aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders, showcasing the power of passion, resilience, and an unwavering commitment to one’s vision. Through his exceptional achievements, he has proven that success is not merely a destination, but a journey fueled by dedication, innovation, and the courage to pursue one’s dreams.
In conclusion, Adam Greenfader’s entrepreneurial journey is a testament to the transformative power of vision, creativity, and determination. His ability to identify opportunities, drive innovation, and create positive change has positioned him as a leader in various industries. As he continues to shape the future through his ventures and philanthropic initiatives, Greenfader leaves an enduring legacy that inspires generations to come.
Join us at the May 2 ULI Cayman Island Finance Webinar.Continue reading
Building Resilient Communities
Florida’s resilience continues to be a growing practical and financial priority. Some 80 percent of Florida’s 22 million residents live within 10 miles (16.1 km) of the coast. The stakes from climate related catastrophes are high. Topping the list of costliest storms to hit Florida, in 2022 dollars, is Ian, at $84 billion, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. As existing buildings age and population growth across the state invites continued losses, new sustainable solutions are needed.
Babcock Ranch in Southwest Florida is a new town expected to have over 50,000 people at buildout. It’s known globally as being “the nation’s first solar-powered town” and showcases around 800 impressive acres of solar panels. The master-planned community is best known however for withstanding hours of sustained winds over 100 miles per hour (161 kph) when Hurricane Ian made landfall in September 2022. With homes and other buildings left mostly unscathed, residents were able to remain home after the storm, and the community welcomed storm refugees to its shelters.
Today many eyes are fixed on this sustainable new town including myself and Amanda Staerker, one of the project’s early contributors in the land design. Together, we toured Babcock Ranch and have shared with you some of the site visit insights.
The main contributors to this success of Babcock include new construction to Florida Green Build Certification standards, underground utilities, native landscaping, and a land plan that minimizes intrusion into the natural systems.
In a recent ULI article, Building for Resilience: How Newer Construction Homes Fared in Florida’s Hurricane Season, the CEO of Babcock Ranch, Syd Kitson, stated,
“Storm safety was absolutely at the top of our list…How could we convince people they could shelter in place? We knew if we did it right from the beginning, we could prove they could.”
Babcock has taught us that we can design for sustainable living by promoting walkability, alternative modes of transportation, and by embracing technologies that allow us to reduce energy. It has taught us that we need to work with nature and to re-introduce back into our built environments the ecology that provides a natural protection.