Miami's Building for Billionaires Who Love Their Cars

SAN DIEGO (TheStreet) -- Some people buy expensive artwork to hang in their home and admire.

Others buy expensive cars to park in their home and admire, just like you would a Monet or Renoir.

That's the way mega developer Gil Dezer explains his latest project: the new 60-story Porsche Design Tower Miami, a first-of-its-kind building featuring a one-of-a-kind automobile lift system that allows owners to park their vehicles in see-through "sky garages" next to their units.

"There are people who view their automobiles as art," says Dezer of the building's homeowners. "The car goes up to the unit and it goes right outside your living room. One guy told us he is bringing a $25 million Ferrari with him. If you're not a car person, you may never get it. But it's the same as the way I look at a Picasso."

The 132-unit building, still under construction, will cost Dezer Development about $425 million to complete and is already 80% sold. Prices of the units range from $4.8 million to $32.5 million.

When the loan was approved for the project in September, it was the largest loan for a major construction project in the Southeast United States since the real estate recession, and exponentially larger than any post-recession loan of its kind in South Florida, according to Dezer and lender Wells Fargo.

The ultra luxury building is awe inspiring not only because of its price tag and unique car elevator, but because of the many other perks and amenities that come with this posh residence.

The building, in Sunny Isles Beach, features plunge pools and outdoor summer kitchens on the balcony of nearly every home. It also has a state-of-the-art spa, a movie theater and a "car concierge" who will tend to residents' vehicles by helping with regular maintenance, tire rotations, washing and more.

But the car elevator is really what sets the building apart.

"A car elevator has never been done before. Our elevator is the first of its kind in the world," Dezer says. "People were afraid of the concept. Even officials were afraid. We had to jump through a bunch of hoops to prove it was viable."

The high-tech elevator uses a robotic arm to put a car in its owner's unit. It also allows a car's operator to communicate with the elevator using the vehicle's headlights. Flashing a vehicle's headlights twice means the driver will stay in the vehicle for the transport to his or her condominium. Three flashes of the headlights means the car operator will ride in a separate, passenger elevator.

Not to be overlooked is the fact that the building was designed in conjunction with Porsche -- maker of some of world's sexiest and most iconic sports cars.

Dezer says Porsche played a major role in the building's look and feel, down to the smallest details. "Porsche designed the aesthetics of elevator ... the experience of being in the elevator," Dezer says.

Thirty-eight-year-old Dezer is no stranger to such lavish or unique developments.

Dezer Signature Brands, an entity of Dezer Development, specializes in co-developing luxury high-rise residential and condo-hotel developments with lifestyle brands. Several of the developer's past projects were completed in partnership with Donald Trump.

Dezer, who started in the business when he was 24, also designed an automated home controlled from a single control panel.

"You can control the lights, the shades, the music, or press a button to order room service, all from one panel, with no human interface," Dezer says.

As for the Porsche Design Tower Miami, Dezer says he was seeking to build a property that would attract buyers despite the still rocky economy.

"We said we have to come up with something so unique, so interesting that even in a bad market, those with money will want to buy it," Dezer says.

What he came up with was a property that combined the car elevator with residences that are much larger then what Dezer normally builds. Typically, a building of this size would have far more than 132 units, but Dezer opted instead to allow for unit sizes ranging from 4,200 to 17,000 square feet.

"We knew there is a lot of wealth here in Miami, from all parts of world. This is the playground for the rich on this side of the ocean. We're the equivalent of St. Tropez in the United States," Dezer says. "And we knew there was a market demand for large-size apartments. We heard from many people who were looking for more space, and then we got together with Porsche and they said 'Let's make a car elevator.' And we got a lot of attention."

More from Personal Finance

The Stock Market Isn't Rigged, Just Look At The Odds (VIDEO)

The Stock Market Isn't Rigged, Just Look At The Odds (VIDEO)

Are Starter Homes Still Worth It?

Are Starter Homes Still Worth It?

How to Wire Money Safely, Affordably and Quickly

How to Wire Money Safely, Affordably and Quickly

Should You Take a Mini-Retirement?

Should You Take a Mini-Retirement?

The Most Expensive Places for Families to live in the U.S.

The Most Expensive Places for Families to live in the U.S.