On Nov. 14, Intown Chabad, under the leadership of Rabbi Eliyahu Schusterman, continued to establish itself as the host to top leaders in Atlanta’s real estate landscape and focused on bringing in the Jewish community to stay on top of trends amidst valuable networking.
During the pre-function hour, Eli Zandman reported that he came to “keep tabs on all things real estate.” Residential agent Alan Smirin remarked, “This is my first time attending a Jewish Business Network event, and I’m finding it to be fantastic!”
Jana Lynn was chatting up her ability to loan “hard money” with little wait for real estate deals, by bypassing banks. “Even if the interest rate is a little higher. We do it in-house.”
Juanita Leibu, a native Paraguayan, living and operating out of Roswell, executes real estate transactions with Uruguayans and explained that she is an architect certified at Israel’s’ Technion Institute. Anat Levinson, dual general manger at the Hilton Garden Inn Atlanta Midtown, aims to get the hotel actively engaged in the community.
Intown Chabad’s Rabbi Schusterman welcomed the crowd to the Jewish Business Network Real Estate Symposium. He began with a relevant Torah interpretation with the death of Sara, and Abraham pondering a piece of property to buy (for the burial site).
Schusterman explained, “Abraham did not want a hand out…he was explicit to pay top dollar in 400 silver shekels. This was significant because it was the first land transaction in Israel, a real acquisition.”
He explained that owning real estate versus renting, especially in the case of a nonprofit, is unique and changes one’s whole relationship. He continued, “It’s an amazing blessing. Since the beginning of time one meaning of “mensh” is owning a home or real estate…tangible or intangible, doing good things, as life is lived here.”
Central Atlanta Progress president A.J. Robinson moderated the panel after sponsor Trey Wilder, president of The Omni Agency, spoke of his role in the night’s event.
The panel was comprised of April Stammel, senior vice president of Newport RE, LP; Harvey Wadsworth, managing director of Portman Residential; and Aaron Goldman, president of Perennial Properties Inc. Each lent their own expertise evaluating Atlanta’s growth markets, opportunities, and the state of the economy coming out of COVID, while projecting realistic optimism.
Goldman was credited with his tremendous foresight initially in buying and building multi-family residential projects on the BeltLine, when it was just a bunch of raw railroad tracks. He contrasted, “It’s hard to afford and acquire buildings intown now,” and thus announced their new projects heading to the suburbs: Paulding County, Chateau Elan for 55-plus, and downtown Lawrenceville.
Coming down the pike is their Bag Factory project, East Lake, located near the popular golf club, consisting of four mixed-use buildings near Glenwood Avenue. Goldman was praised by Robinson for his philanthropic work feeding the homeless. Goldman noted, “One day I was out riding my bike and saw many homeless people and wanted to do something, make something better in Atlanta.” His matching charity Open Doors has housed 10,000 people thus far in permanent stable housing.
Portman’s Wadsworth then shared his thoughts on the market reset. “Costs went up with the stimulus as value declined,” also eschewing urban development in favor of the suburbs. He said, “We are excited about suburbs like Woodstock that has a walkable downtown.”
Stammel, who specializes with her German firm in the 10 blocks defined as “South Downtown,” explained that Germany was ahead of the U.S. in sustainability. “Post-COVID, we are looking at more outdoor space and extra room in residential for co-working space/desks.”
Robinson noted that to get something done expeditiously in the public domain, “We have to have a crisis like the Olympics coming. The World Cup is next, so a lot could get done.”
Rabbi Schusterman recognized E.B. Catering for producing such an awesome buffet with carving stations as “a real taste of New York.” The lineup included grilled vegetables, two colorful seasonal salads, carved turkey, and magnificent cuts of beef. After the program, E.B. dazzled again with fresh carved fruit, melons and berries, apple tart a la mode, and deep dark chocolate “dirt” parfaits. Everyone was full, literally, and figuratively, with insight.
- Marcia Caller Jaffe
- Intown Chabad
- real estate
- Rabbi Eliyahu Schusterman
- Eli Zandman
- Alan Smirin
- Jana Lynn
- Juanita Leibu
- Technion Institute
- Anat Levinson
- Hilton Garden Inn Atlanta Midtown
- Jewish Business Network Real Estate Symposium
- Central Atlanta Progress
- April Stammel
- Harvey Wadsworth
- Portman Residential
- Aaron Goldman
- Perennial Properties Inc
- Paulding County
- Chateau Elan
- Open Doors
- E.B Catering
- Bag Factory project
- East Lake