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Robert Thomson Reflects on His Journey Into Luxury Real Estate

Waterfront Properties’ Robert Thomson looks back on more than 30 years in the South Florida luxury real estate market.

Robert Thomson Reflects on His Journey Into Luxury Real EstateWaterfront Properties and Club Communities owner, property mogul, and a veteran of the South Florida luxury real estate market, Robert Thomson reflects on his 30-year career and talks family, indoctrination, induction into Luxury Real Estate’s Billionaires Club, brokering yachts, and more.

Robert ‘Rob’ Thomson was indoctrinated into the world of luxury real estate at a young age. “I was an unwitting student in the Joan Thomson School of Real Estate,” he jokes.

In fact, it’s true that Robert Thomson picked up a number of the best techniques from his highly successful real estate professional mother as a child. Many of these techniques he still uses today, more than three decades later.

In the late 1980s, Thomson’s mother, Joan, changed the name of her existing real estate business to Waterfront Properties, deciding to truly specialize, as the name suggests, in Palm Beach County’s exclusive waterfront properties. Now known as both Waterfront Properties, and Waterfront Properties and Club Communities, it’s the same thriving company which, and since 2010, Robert Thomson now runs.

“You don’t realize how much you’re getting indoctrinated by how much is being absorbed into your brain when you listen to it your whole life,” reveals Thomson, “until you start doing it and you already know a lot of the answers.”

Self-declared matriarch Joan Thomson remains at Waterfront Properties, today single-handedly accounting for more waterfront real estate transactions than any other brokerage in the local area, from Boca Raton to Jupiter and Stuart, and priced from $250,000 to more than $50 million apiece. An integral part of Waterfront’s training team, Joan is an expert in schooling new agents in what—from the first contact to signed contracts—she and Robert call ‘the Waterfront way.’

“My mom is awesome,” says Rob. “She’s an incredible partner and continues to be a mentor, and, while she’ll never admit it, she’s a true real estate visionary,” he adds.

Early recruitment into the Joan Thomson School of Real Estate, it seems, has paid dividends for Thomson, who, in 2012, became the youngest agent ever to be inducted into Luxury Real Estate’s Billionaires Club. “Quite a testament,” he remarks, “to my mom’s mentoring!”

Today, under Robert Thomson, who places great importance on cutting-edge technology and a unique approach to online marketing, Waterfront Properties and Club Communities boasts more than 100 agents and brokers, regularly buying and selling homes worth tens of millions of dollars.

What’s more, the highly successful businessman is also the name behind Waterfront Yacht Brokerage, giving Waterfront Properties and Club Communities’ clients the option to further buy and sell ultra-luxurious watercraft alongside, or in addition to, their similarly luxurious homes and other properties.

“It just makes sense,” suggests Thomson of the sister venture, established alongside his boat captain, Joe Kelly, in 2015, “and is one of the main reasons why Waterfront Yacht Brokerage has been so successful.”

“Now,” he adds, wrapping up, “clients can sell or buy their home and boat through experts in both areas, all of whom are on the same team.”

Robert Thomson is a luxury real estate professional based in Jupiter, Florida. Robert ‘Rob’ Thomson is a managing partner and owner of Waterfront Properties and Club Communities and is co-owner of the Jupiter-based restaurant Shipwreck Bar and Grille. A keen philanthropist, Thomson is a regular volunteer with organizations such as the American Cancer Society and Big Dog Ranch Rescue, as well as Waterfront Properties’ own charitable organization, the Waterfront Way Foundation.

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