By Jennifer Armel
Late last week it was announced by Hyatt Hotels and Mizrahi Developments that the first ANdAZ hotel in Toronto would be located within The One - the building which is anticipated to be one of the tallest commercial and residential mixed-use towers in Canada.
Hyatt’s luxury lifestyle brand, ANdAZ is expected to make its Toronto debut in 2022 taking up floors 4 through 16 of the tower. It will include 160-rooms, more than 12,000 square feet of event and conference space, world class food and beverage, a spa and more.
So, how did this partnership come to be?
Avi Behar, our Chairman and CEO travels around the world to explore new and innovative business opportunities. Inspired by these adventures, Avi leaves his imprints on the commercial real estate landscape and encourages The Behar Group broker team to be creative in their real estate thinking. “Beyond brokerage in any one asset class, we seek to create opportunities for people to develop globally innovative concepts and real estate projects and partnerships,” said Avi.
This particular adventure started in November of 2014 when Avi and his wife, Mio, went to MAPIC (The International retail property market) conference in Cannes, France.
As part of their adventure they chose to explore Amsterdam first, where Mio found the unique hotel concept, ANdAZ.
“It was a new kind of service model. The vibrant luxury lifestyle hotel was deeply rooted in local art and culture” Behar describes.
After an amazing experience and falling in love with the concept, Avi was determined to bring ANdAZ to Toronto and connected with Scott Richer, who oversees development of all Hyatt brands across Canada.
Shortly thereafter, Avi presented and reviewed the ANdAZ brand and value proposition with Sam Mizrahi who had confirmed he wanted to create a substantial commercial program at his new development, ‘The One’, to augment the planned luxury residential component.
It was a perfect fit. Avi then introduced Hyatt and Mizrahi, and the rest, as we say, is history.
“We’re excited to have the iconic ANdAZ brand on board as we move ahead with this extraordinary project,” Said Mizrahi.
“With his vision, patience, perseverance and hard work, Avi was truly instrumental in bringing this deal to fruition.”
“My initial goal was to bring the ANdAZ brand to Toronto and thankfully, I was able to accomplish that. However, even more than accomplishing my goal, it was very rewarding to me to be able to establish deeper connections and friendships with Scott and Sam. Both of these relationships have continued to flourish” said Behar.
“As we all continued to get to know one another, I realized that our respective companies all shared similar values – treating clients like family, and always maintaining a boutique principled approach to our relationships and our overall business.”
A broker’s role is very much about navigating negotiations like this one.
“We have become very active in all asset classes and I really enjoy the hotel space. In the mixed-use urban world in which we live, it’s our creativity and passion that help us to analyze and advise on sites to determine what the best possible use would be. No two sites are the same,” said Behar.
Jennifer is the Director of Marketing and Communications for The Behar Group. A graduate from Wilfrid Laurier University’s honours communication studies degree program and Seneca College’s postgraduate corporate communications/PR program, Jennifer has a passion for helping businesses get their messages out clearly, concisely and accurately using an array of communications techniques. Jennifer’s love of writing/blogging, social media and relationship-building have helped various organizations reach their target audiences with sharp and meaningful information.