Brazilian developer gains steam on 87-acre parcel along US 192

Magic Development, an Orlando-based townhouse resort developer with Brazilian ownership roots, is a step closer to rezoning 87 acres of undeveloped land on U.S. 192 in the heart of Kissimmee's tourism corridor, and could break ground by December on road and infrastructure work, the company's director told GrowthSpotter

Projected at $1 billion in investment over the next 10 to 15 years, Magic at Celebration (formerly dubbed Magic Place) is being pitched as a 2,000-unit luxury timeshare resort spread across six towers, with around 250,000 square feet of retail and dining space bordering U.S. 192, west of SR 535.

It’s the third and largest of three timeshare projects in Greater Kissimmee the company is currently developing, to be marketed to Brazilian investors for sale and timeshare rental.

Acquired for $8.32 million in December 2014, the 87 acres, now zoned Agricultural, must be rezoned Tourist Commercial. Magic Development's affiliate LLC 4P Development also filed for a large scale comprehensive plan amendment to change the future land use designation on 16.82 acres within the property from Low-Density Residential to Tourist Commercial. 

Both changes were recommended for approval last week by Osceola County's Development Review Committee and will now go before the county's Planning & Zoning Board on Sept. 10. 

Once rezoning is approved, Magic Development will submit permitting requests for roadways and infrastructure on the property. That work could break ground by year's end and be completed in late 2016 with construction of the first resort tower to start in 2017, said James Mincy, director at Magic Development.

Retail space will be the initial development focus for Magic at Celebration, along with a man-made lake that will separate two sides of the property. Water taxis would move guests between the retail area and future resort towers on the parcel's south end. 

The company is drawing interest in retail pre-leasing, Mincy said. If leases are signed this year, Magic Development could plat out and provide land leases, and begin build-out for retail structures as early as 2016 so initial retailers have buildings ready to open as soon as interior roads on the property's north are done by late 2016, he added. 

Plans for Magic at Celebration call for some 250,000 square feet of retail. However, a Phase I effort will include only 60,000 square feet, said Mincy, who noted the company is talking with restaurant chains, banks and a high-end gift shop as potential lease partners.

Magic Development is working with brokerage firm Continental Real Estate Companies for pre-leasing tenants of the retail space. It has yet to select road work contractors or a general contractor for Magic at Celebration.

MAGIC VILLAGE I STILL ON TRACK
The company's first development, the $70-plus million, 180-town home luxury resort Magic Village located two miles from Disney’s Animal Kingdom, is on pace to open in mid- to late September, Mincy said. 

The first phase of 47 townhouses are finished, fully furnished and ready for occupancy, but won't open for owners or vacation renters until the property's clubhouse is ready in September, he said. 

Magic Village’s time line has been fraught with delays over the past year, with homeowners initially given a November 2014 opening date. The property's soft opening has been delayed repeatedly due to redesigns of the clubhouse and changes to initial townhouses. 

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