Bloomberg: Miami’s Richest Home Owners All Want These Over-the-Top Amenities
As told by Kobi Karp, their mega-mansion architect of choice. By James Tarmy August 2, 2016 In 2012 Miami-based architect Kobi Karp transitioned from designing luxury resorts to designing private, stand-alone mansions. “When you walk into a beautiful hotel and say, ‘I wish I had this bathroom in my house,’ my job is to make sure that bathroom is actually in your house,” Karp said. Not many people would describe the Miami residential market as modest, but in Karp’s telling, when he began to design residences the area was flooded with smaller, bungalow-style houses built in the 1930s and 1940s. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="360"] 4700 North Bay Road, a Miami Beach mansion designed by Kobi Karp.Source: Kobi Karp Architecture and Interior Design, Inc.[/caption] “What became apparent is that the individuals coming to Miami wanted a home that didn't exist,” he said. They wanted something bigger, and Karp, along with fellow architects and developers, were more than happy to oblige. Just four years later, Karp's firm has designed “around 20” houses, from 15,000 square feet to 30,000 square feet, for clients ranging from such basketball stars as Juwan Howard to chief executives like Barry Sternlicht, founder of Starwood Capital Group. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="360"] Karp's clients include basketball stars, celebrities, and CEOs. Here, the Ponce Residence.Source: Kobi Karp Architecture and Interior Design, Inc.[/caption] While Karp has a diverse range of clients (“diverse” being a relative term for the sliver of people who can afford houses that cost from $5 million to $40 million to build), there are certain unifying amenities—all of which involve entertainment—that Karp’s clients want. And while it’s impossible to claim with authority that these features are specific to Miami, it would require a significant suspension of disbelief to imagine that any of the following design components would look at home on, say, Nantucket. See for yourself.