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Posts tagged NAREE

Palm Trees & Real Estate: We are getting ready for NAREE in Miami!


Tony Wilbert with Senator Johnny Isakson at NAREE 2013

Who says Google is the only brand that can play with its logo successfully?

At The Wilbert Group, we are very involved in the National Association of Real Estate Editors (NAREE), and our graphic designer has changed the logo up to reflect the location of its annual conference.

First, in 2013, when our own Tony Wilbert was co-chair of the conference and it was held in Atlanta, we incorporated a peach.





And this year, to honor the host city of Miami, we added a palm tree!

NAREE is hosting its 49th Annual Spring Conference in Miami June 24 to June 27. Tony already has his plane ticket, and several of our clients are presenting. The NAREE conference always offers a great opportunity to spend time with our friends who cover real estate at trade publications like National Real Estate Investor, major metros like The Baltimore Sun and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and national outlets including Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal. The speakers, leading real estate executives, also offer insight into industry trends.

Five Photos from NAREE 2014


by Suong Nguyen

As someone who’s relatively new to the real estate scene, my trip to the annual National Association of Real Estate Editors (NAREE) conference was a great way to meet some of the industry’s top journalists and attend panels that covered a wide range of topics – from luxe housing, shopping centers, vacation homes and everything else in between!

Here are five photos from my visit to NAREE 2014 in Houston, the “Energy Capital of the World.”

#1 Everyone loves a good swag bag. We had a wonderful time meeting Unique Homes’ managing editor Mark Moffa and writer Camilla McLaughlin, who were kind enough to take a moment to pose with their new tote bags, courtesy of our client, Camana Bay.

#2 What’s next for online real estate. Eric Eckardt of Hubzu, another Wilbert Group client, was one of the experts who participated in the forum on the future of online real estate. Some of the topics the panelists went over included pocket listings and Zillow’s new “coming soon” feature.

#3 Meeting/speed dating the press. One of my favorite aspects of NAREE is how even though there are serious topics being discussed, the atmosphere is casual and friendly. This comfort level came in handy during the Meet the Press portion of the conference, where I met with over 20 journalists and had three minutes (or less) to pitch our clients. It definitely felt like speed dating, but thankfully minus the awkwardness!

#4 At the end of the day, we made time to eat… When I’m in a new city, my favorite thing to do is explore the local restaurant scene. I also consider myself a pretty adventurous eater, so when I saw chapulines (aka grasshoppers) on the menu at Hugo’s, I convinced the table to try it with me. In case you’re curious, grasshoppers taste exactly how you think they would – crunchy and earthy.

#5 Drink… Since we were in Texas, it would have been downright bad manners to not sample the local beers and whiskeys. My personal favorite was the Alamo Golden Ale.

And be NAREE!

Photo: Kris Hudson, Wall Street Journal.

We can’t wait to do it all over again in Miami for NAREE 2015!


Five Reasons We’re Excited for NAREE 2014


by Caroline Wilbert

We’re counting down the days until NAREE. Here’s why.

The National Association of Real Estate Editors hosts a great annual conference, drawing some of the country’s leading journalists who cover real estate, as well as top-notch speakers from the industry. Last year, we convinced the organization to host the conference in Atlanta. It was awesome! This year, both Tony Wilbert and Suong Nguyen from The Wilbert Group will head to Houston June 11-14.

Five things we like about NAREE:

Senator Johnny Isakson being interviewed by the media during NAREE 2013 in Atlanta.

#1 It’s fun to talk real estate with top journalists including NAREE President Daniel Taub from Bloomberg News and NAREE Board Chair Kris Hudson from The Wall Street Journal.

#2 The Wilbert Group has a lot of real estate clients (residential, office, multifamily, hospitality, retail, etc.) and NAREE’s conference is a great time to pitch their stories and release news.

#3 This year, several of our clients are sponsoring the conference including Hubzu and Camana Bay. The CEO of another client, CBRE Global Investors, will be speaking.

Mark Toro, North American Properties managing partner, and Kris Hudson, last year’s NAREE president, overlooking the Atlanta skyline.

#4 It’s a great learning experience. The speakers are always heavy hitters and the conversations interesting. Here’s this year’s lineup.

#5 NAREE includes “field trips” within its host city. It will be fascinating to see Houston through a real estate lens. A lot of our clients are doing work in Houston; it’s a booming economy and (like Atlanta) a great real estate town.

Five Reasons We’re Excited for 2014


by Savannah Duncan

Sure 2013 was a great year for The Wilbert Group. But it looks like 2014 is going to be even better. From project openings to milestone celebrations, this year promises to be downright fun. Here are five reasons we’re looking forward to the next 12 months:

#1 Cayman Cookout. The most exclusive epicurean event in the Caribbean takes place Jan. 16-19 on Grand Cayman. Cayman Cookout celebrates all things food with celebrity chefs, cooking demonstrations, wine tastings and more. Wilbert client Camana Bay is hosting a special event to honor local Caymanians who have come together to creatively manage the lionfish, an invasive species that also happens to be a serious culinary delight.

#2 We are turning five! In May, Wilbert will celebrate our fifth birthday…hopefully with cupcakes. We have great memories of working together as a team, and a whole bunch of client work that makes us proud. We look forward to many more years!

#3 The Brice opens. A sophisticated boutique hotel by Kimpton located in the heart of Savannah’s historic district, The Brice will open in May. As one of our newest clients, we can’t wait for the grand opening, sure to be the best party Savannah has seen in a long while.

#4 The National Association of Real Estate Editors conference in Houston. Last year, we made connections with top real estate reporters in the country at NAREE in Atlanta. We look forward to seeing old friends and sharing our clients’ stories.

#5 Avalon opens. In October, the first phase of North American Properties’ 2.4 million-square-foot mixed-use development in Alpharetta will open. The first phase includes 250 luxury rental homes, 101 single-family homes, 400,000 square feet of retail and restaurants and 108,000 square feet of loft office space. We don’t usually say this, but we can’t wait to go OTP!

Here’s a sneak peek of what Avalon will look like:

Wherever we go and whatever we do, we’ll share our journey with you on our blog, Facebook and Twitter!

Top Five Photos from NAREE 2013


by Leigh Taylor 

Last week was exciting for The Wilbert Group and for real estate journalists from around the country, as the National Association of Real Estate Editors (NAREE) held its 2013 conference in Atlanta. With a schedule chock-full of networking events, tours, panels and — of course — happy hours, there were endless photo ops. As Wilbert recovers from the NAREE 2013 whirlwind, here are five of the best photos.

#1 Breathing life into Midtown. Mark Toro (left), managing partner at North American Properties, and NAREE president Kris Hudson (right), reporter for The Wall Street Journal, posed at the Atlantic Station tour kick-off. Toro spoke about bringing Midtown’s mixed-use development back to life with experiential retail and topnotch social media.

#2 The senate comes to NAREE. One of the biggest names at NAREE 2013 was Senator Johnny Isakson. After his talk on the current state and recovery of the real estate market — and giving an impromptu press conference to the media — Tony Wilbert posed for a shot with Georgia’s senator.

#3 A bright future for New Urbanism. Andrés Duany (left), New Urbanism guru and co-founder of DPZ Architecture, and Jackie Doak (right), COO of Dart Realty and Camana Bay, were all smiles after a fervent panel on the future of global suburbs, cities and towns.

#4 Real estate in the digital age. Sue Silverman (left) of Commercial Property Executive and Matthew Strozier (right) of The Wall Street Journal Online responded to questions after their panel on covering real estate in digital media.

#5 Happy at the top. Scott Trubey of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution welcomed NAREE attendees at a skyline happy hour and tour of the residences at the top of the W Atlanta Downtown.

And #6…just for fun! A “shot” of good whiskey, served at the “Wry Ideas” event hosted by NAREE vice president, Daniel Taub of Bloomberg, and NAREE president Kris Hudson of The Wall Street Journal. Wilbert’s own Savannah Duncan helped serve the spirits!


NAREE Recap: Day Two


by Stephen Ursery 

The National Association of Real Estate Editors’ (NAREE) 47th Annual Conference continued last night and today in downtown Atlanta, with attendees getting a chance to hear about the history of the Atlanta skyline, tour Atlantic Station and attend educational sessions on topics ranging from real estate radio shows to luxury housing.

Here are five quick blurbs about some of the sights and sounds of the past 24 hours:

#1 Up from the Ashes. On Wednesday night, NAREE revelers enjoyed drinks, appetizers and a view of thunderstorms over the city in a model condo on the 26th floor of the W Hotel & Residences in downtown Atlanta. Scott Trubey, commercial real estate reporter at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, graciously provided the group the backstory on the building, which was foreclosed on in 2010. The problems were related to a complicated ownership dispute and the failure of Silverton Bank. Trubey told the crowd that the property is doing well today. “Atlanta’s symbol is the phoenix, as in rising from the ashes,” he said.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Scott Trubey speaks during the W Hotel & Residences Tour.

#2 This Party Isn’t Over. The recovering single-family housing market doesn’t “mean the fun is over for the multifamily industry,” said Mark Obrinksy of the National Multi Housing Council during Thursday morning’s “Multifamily Midyear Forecast” session.

The number of young adults still living with their parents is still quite high, Orbinsky added, and as the labor market improves and they leave home, apartment demand will increase.

Greg Willett of MPF Research pinpointed Washington D.C. as one market that is the subject of strong overbuilding concerns within the industry, but he said most of the product coming online appears to be well-placed.

On the subject of micro apartments in Texas, Willett said a developer proposing a building with those units “would just be laughed at.” Everything is indeed bigger in Texas.

#3 Big Year for Hotels. 2014 is shaping up to be one of the best years for the hotel industry in a while, according to Mark Woodworth of PKF Hospitality Research. Woodworth made his remarks during Thursday’s “Mid-Year Hotel Outlook” session.

The top U.S. markets for hotel revenue growth are Houston; Newark, N.J.; Oakland, Calif.; Chicago; and Oahu, Hawaii. Memphis is experiencing the lowest revenue growth of major U.S. cities, according to Woodworth.

Wherever he is these days, Elvis is surely weeping.

#4 Radio Talkers Talk. “Make a bold statement and then support that.” That’s Michael Bull’s advice for the guests on his weekly “Commercial Real Estate Show” radio program – and that’s how he urged attendees of Wednesday’s “Behind the Mic” lunchtime session to handle any radio or television appearances they might make.

Bull, the president of Bull Realty, and Ilyce Glink, host of the residential real estate-focused “Ilyce Glink Show,” discussed their broadcasting careers at the session.

Bull said he seeks a diversity of commercial real estate perspectives on his show, from analysts to in-the-trenches brokers.

Glink noted that industry figures can create their own podcasts fairly easily by using online services such as Blog Talk Radio or by purchasing their own hardware for a fairly cheap price. “A good digital recorder costs $100,” she said.

#5 High-Class Living. “The Boom in Luxe Housing” panel drew a lively crowd on Thursday morning. Kofi Natei Nartey of The Agency of Beverly Hills said that pocket listings for luxury homes are on the rise. “Creating mystique is a sales strategy,” he said.

Accountants of high-net-worth entertainers also are urging their clients to invest in luxury real estate, Nartey said.


NAREE Recap: Day One


by Stephen Ursery

The National Association of Real Estate Editors (NAREE) is holding its 47th Annual Spring Journalism Conference here at the Hilton Atlanta this week, and The Wilbert Group is there in force. In addition to our clients participating on numerous panels and hosting several high-profile events throughout the week, The Wilbert Group is providing pro bono communications for the conference and President Tony Wilbert is co-chair of the Host Committee.

In the spirit of the High Five blog, here are five quick blurbs about the sights and sounds of the show thus far:

#1 Taking Them Out to the Ballgame. About 30 real estate journalists and industry members took in the Atlanta Braves’ extra-inning win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night. A blazing summer sun and some good ‘ole Southern humidity made the first few innings something less than completely comfortable, but according to our sources, the group from NAREE was feeling a lot better after a frosty beverage or two and the much-anticipated sunset.

Our sources also can confirm that France Media Editor Matt Valley provided extensive analysis of the Braves’ season so far on the post-game shuttle ride back to the Hilton.

Those in attendance included Ralph Bivins of Realty News Report, Harold Bubil of the Sarasota Harold-Tribune, Michael Bull of Bull Realty, Sue Doerfler of the Arizona Republic, Liz Gillespie of North American Properties, Daniel Taub of Bloomberg, Kristi Swartz of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Scott Trubey of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, to name just a few.

#2 Go West Young Man (And South. And East). In the “Top 10 Issues Facing Residential and Commercial Real Estate Over the Next Decade” session on Wednesday morning, Howard Gelbtuch, chair of the Counselors of Real Estate, pinpointed Brazil, China, India and Russia as countries poised for significant economic growth – and, thus, growing commercial real estate opportunities – in the coming years.

#3 Not Getting out of the House. Gelbtuch also noted that the trend of working from home will have a growing impact on the office sector. “This year, 30 percent of U.S. professionals chose to work from home, and this number is expected to skyrocket over the next several years,” he said.

So if you’re reading this from the den while on the company dime, you’re not alone.

#4 Urban is In. In the “The Workplace Debate: Downtown vs. Suburbs” session on Wednesday afternoon, the panelists made it clear that tenants now want to be in walkable urban environments to attract workers.

According to David Kitchens of Cooper Carry, 85 percent of the projects that the firm’s Washington D.C. office is working on are around a transit station or a planned transit station.

#5 Small is In, Too. Both the “Workplace” and the “Top 10” sessions touched on the shrinking size of much of commercial space. According to David Demarest of Jones Lang LaSalle, Gen Y workers simply don’t need a lot of square footage to put stuff. “Everything they need is in this (holding up iPad) or an iPhone” he said.

Likewise, many apartments that are less than 320 square feet are being sold in New York City, Gelbtuch noted.

Five Ways To Get Involved With NAREE If You’re Not Attending


by Jamie Lewis

Next week kicks of the 47th Annual Real Estate Journalism Conference, hosted
by the National Association of Real Estate Editors (NAREE). NAREE’s conference, titled “Designs on the New Urban Grid,” will bring some of the top journalists from around the country to Atlanta June 5 -8 to focus on housing, commercial real estate, and urban planning. If you’re unable to attend this year’s conference, have no fear! We’re taking to social media to document this year’s conference and make sure everyone can follow along with the panel discussions and Q&A sessions. Here are five ways you can get involved even if you’re not attending — or make sure you don’t miss a single thing even if you are there.

#1 Follow the official NAREE Twitter account: naree10. This is where we’ll be tweeting out information from the panels, answering questions, and sparking conversation about new and emerging trends in the real estate journalism industry. Keep an eye out on Twitter for instagram and vine videos too!

#2 Check the hashtag #NAREE13. We’re encouraging everyone who attends this year’s NAREE conference to tweet about panels and Q&A sessions and engage with other conference attendees by using the official hashtag, #NAREE13. Tracking and using the hashtag is a great way to follow along and engage with conference attendees and speakers.

#3 “Like” The Wilbert Group’s facebook page! Throughout the week, we’ll be sharing recap blogs and vlogs (video blogs) from NAREE.

#4 Get visual! Maybe Twitter isn’t your thing and you prefer a visual format. The Wilbert Group will be snapping lots of pictures — a great way to see your friends and colleagues in action — during the conference and posting them over on our Instagram account. The username is TheWilbertGroup. You can also track the #NAREE13 hashtag on Instagram, too!

#5 Don’t forget the videos. We’ll be recapping the conference in video format over on Youtube. Keep your eyes peeled for daily and weekly recap videos, and Vine videos. You never know what the camera will capture!

We’re looking forward to this year’s NAREE conference and hearing all about trends in real estate. We hope you’ll be tweeting and following along with us!

Five reasons we are excited about this year’s NAREE conference


Tony Wilbert with journalists at NAREE 2012.

For real estate journalists and communications professionals, this is a bit like landing the Super Bowl in our hometown. The National Association of Real Estate Editors is hosting its annual conference in Atlanta June 5-8. The Wilbert Group is proud to be an official sponsor, and our founder/president Tony Wilbert is co-chair of the event. Tony has traveled west to participate in several NAREE conferences in the past, and is a huge believer in the organization, which draws top real estate journalists, as well as phenomenal industry speakers.

Below are the top five reasons we are excited about this year’s NAREE conference:

#1 We are proud to show off our city to journalists who appreciate a true real estate town. In a recent NAREE newsletter, Matt Valley, a France Media editor and co-chair of the event, listed high-profile real estate companies based here, from Beazer Homes to Carter to Selig Enterprises. “Through booms and busts, Atlanta’s real estate market has been inextricably linked to its overall identity as the capital of the Southeast. So it seems only fitting that NAREE’s annual conference will take place in Atlanta this June.”

#2 Attendees will enjoy a fantastic tour of Atlantic Station. NAREE Executive Director Mary Doyle-Kimball says Atlantic Station is a bit “like a self-contained little city within the big city, which is what reporters keep hearing everyone is clamoring for.” Journalists will get a bird’s eye view of the city (and a drink) on the 21st floor of the BB&T Building, tour a model apartment, stroll past the retail, check out the public spaces and finish up at one of Atlantic Station’s watering holes.

#3 Topics for panel discussions and speeches touch on all things interesting to real estate enthusiasts. Topics range from the student housing industry to a hotel market outlook to trends in mortgage lending. Opening speaker Howard Gelbtuch, chairman of the Counselors of Real Estate, will outline the top 10 issues facing residential and commercial real estate during the next decade. A couple days later, Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, will provide his midyear forecast.

#4 NAREE always draws a crowd of leading commercial real estate journalists. A few we look forward to seeing this year include Kris Hudson and Alyssa Abkowitz of the Wall Street Journal; Lois Weiss of the New York Post and Daniel Taub from Bloomberg.

#5 Our own Tony Wilbert is participating in a panel on of his favorite subjects: “Twitter and the Fourth Estate.” We definitely don’t want to miss that!