Features Sunshine State of Mind

Waterfront Rising

Photo courtesy of Olara

Pack your bags? More like pack up your life as you once knew it. Last August, the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles saw more drivers’ licenses change from New York to Florida than in any other single month in history. One chartered flight company, XO, is “tripling down on their flights between Farmingdale (Long Island) and PBI (Palm Beach)” this year, according to Aviation International News. People are still flocking–and flying– down to Palm Beach, and not just for the season. While other housing markets have cooled, home sales in the Palm Beaches remain robust and inventory is still scant. The influx of newly minted Floridians has created wait lists at golf clubs and private schools. It begs the question: Where will these new denizens settle?

Chris Schlank is betting that many will gravitate towards Olara, his buzzy new 26-story building along Palm Beach’s intracoastal waterway. “Olara is poised to transform the waterfront of West Palm Beach into a world-class destination,” said Schlank, president of Savanna, an esteemed real estate development firm with offices in Miami, West Palm Beach and New York City.

Dreamily designed by Arquitectonica, Olara’s glimmering tower will feature two-to-four-bedroom residences with dens that range from just under 1,500 to over 5,000 square feet. A collection of penthouse homes will include sprawling rooftop decks. All spaces are bright and airy with floor-to-ceiling windows for soaking up the views. “The building is designed as an assemblage of slender vertical volumes, with balconies folding strategically to imply spinnakers racing to sea,” said Bernardo Fort-Brescia, founding principal of Arquitectonica. “The curved corners are inspired by the flowing lines found in the nautical architecture of yachts and sailboats.”

But what truly sets Olara apart from all the other West Palm Beach condominiums? Unparalleled amenities. On the sixth floor, there will be an 80,000-square-foot waterfront deck, exuding resort-style luxury. Indoor and outdoor experiences include yoga and Pilates studios, a gorgeous gym designed by The Wright Fit, turf lanes, a juice bar, two pools and cabanas. The spa will feature a Japanese onsen, saunas, steam and treatment rooms. And for those still embracing the remote lifestyle, the sixth-floor deck will have stately private and co-working spaces, a waterfront veranda, a library and a multi-media lounge. Taking a dip in the pool after the last zoom call? No one will be the wiser. “The pool is the centerpiece,” added Fort-Brescia. “It is complemented by a second pool deck at the ‘peninsula’ facing the intracoastal.”

On the ground, Olara is set to announce the addition of a famed epicurean market and restaurant, which will take up nearly 30,000 square feet and overlook a private marina. Residents will be able to arrange charters through a private concierge. Currently, Savanna’s team is handpicking the most bespoke brands and services to fill the ground level storefronts, making Olara not just a private oasis for residents, but a lifestyle destination for local Palm Beachers. Prices begin at $2 million, and all sales and marketing efforts are being exclusively handled by Douglas Elliman. According to Alison Newton, Olara’s director of sales, the reception has been strong and many units in Olara are already under contract. “Today’s buyer wants a luxury lifestyle incorporated into their surroundings,” said Newton. “And Savanna brings those most-wanted amenities, experiences and services to the Palm Beaches.”

And it’s not just out-of-towners who are interested in Olara. Many Palm Beach Island loyalists are looking to downsize and embrace the new luxury condominium lifestyle. They’re excited for this newest and shiniest waterfront toy. Viewing Olara as an extension of Palm Beach Island, Palm Beachers will find it minutes from their macchiato at Sant Ambroeus, their art exhibit at the Norton or the newest Broadway show at the Kravis Center. Recent sold-out building projects, such as the Bristol and La Clara, served to revolutionize the south stretch of Flagler. Now, Olara will be the first and the most important building to open up the northern Flagler corridor.

“As a longtime Northwood homeowner, I’m really looking forward to the unveiling of Olara’s new restaurant and shops,” said Cecile Katz. “This area just keeps getting better and I know Olara is going to add great value to an already sought-after location.”

West Palm Beach is not just evolving, it’s growing up and growing into one of the most unique places to live. The new iconic buildings along Flagler, like the Olara tower, will not only serve as today’s homes, but tomorrow’s artful symbols of a flourishing era.

For more information, visit olarawestpalmbeach.com or contact sales@olarawestpalmbeach.com.