Travel Retailer Dufry to Move, Expand Regional HQ West of MIA

Prologis is ready to build the new 200,000-square-foot regional headquarters for Dufry at the Beacon Lakes industrial park.

By Lidia Dinkova

A travel retailer is moving its office and warehouse to a 200,000-square-foot space west of Miami International Airport in another deal demonstrating industrial growth.

Switzerland-based Dufry AG owns and operates retail shops at airports, cruises and train stations. Its Latin American regional headquarter, including offices and warehouses, is in a 160,000-square-foot space at the International Corporate Park in Doral.

It’s moving about two miles west to Beacon Lakes, an expansive industrial and retail park northwest of the Dolphin Expressway and Florida’s Turnpike near Doral. Construction on the new headquarters is set to start by the end of March.

“Their business had been growing,” said Christopher Harak, senior vice president for Blanca Commercial Real Estate, which brokered the new lease on behalf of Dufry.

Prologis, the owner and developer of Beacon Lakes, will develop the new building for Dufry on the southeast corner of Northwest 137th Avenue and 14th Street.

Under the build-to-suit lease, the building will be designed with an eye toward efficiency with 32-foot warehouse ceilings, allowing for more storage.

“It’s going to allow them to essentially store 60 percent more goods in about 30 percent less space,” Harak said.

He declined to disclose the lease terms or value.

Blanca Commercial’s Juan Ruiz worked along with Harak on the deal. JLL represented Prologis.

The industrial market in Miami-Dade County has been healthy with high occupancy rates, according to a Cushman & Wakefield report. The industrial vacancy rate was 4.7 percent in the end of 2017, and it was even lower in the Airport West submarket at 3.4 percent,

The new and old Dufry buildings are in the same submarket.

The company operates 2,200 duty-free and duty-paid shops worldwide. The Miami-Dade headquarters has operations in Latin America and the Caribbean. Its brands include Hudson, World Duty Free and Colombian Emeralds International.

Duty-free retailer signs 200,000-square-foot deal for new facility in Miami-Dade

Travel retailer Dufry signed a 200,000-square-foot lease for a built-to-suit warehouse and office facility near Doral.

By Brian Bandell

Travel retailer Dufry signed a 200,000-square-foot lease for a built-to-suit warehouse and office facility near Doral.
Blanca Commercial Real Estate’s Christopher Harak and Juan Ruiz represented the Switzerland-based retailer in the deal. Prologis, the landlord and developer, was represented by Jones Lang LaSalle.

Harak said Dufry has outgrown its 160,000-square-foot facility at International Corporate Park, another Prologis (NYSE: PLD) facility. The company will leave that facility for a new building at Beacon Lakes.

The company has 215 employees now, and the expansion should allow it to hire 50 people in its office over the next two years, he said.
“They were in an older building, and it was becoming inefficient,” Harak said. “They were looking for a space to accommodate them for the next 10 years.”

The 200,000-square-foot facility, which will include 25,000 square feet of office space, will be at the southeast corner of Northwest 137th Avenue and Northwest 14th Street, he said. It should break ground by the end of the first quarter, and be ready by the first quarter of 2019.

Prologis extended the lease at Dufry’s current location until the new building is ready, he added.

Dufry sells its goods at 2,200 duty-free shops in 63 countries, mostly in airports, seaports and cruise ships. This facility mostly ships goods to the Caribbean, Mexico and other parts of Latin America, Harak said.

“This lease is critical for our short-and long-term business needs, as our new space will support our continued growth and accommodate our annual expansion requirements for the foreseeable future,” Dufry CEO Rene Riedi said.

Since the new building will have 32-foot ceilings – six feet taller than the current building – more depth and wider column spacing, it will allow Dufry to be 30 percent more efficient with the flow of goods in its space, Harak said.