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This Week's LA Deal Sheet

The International Jewelry Mart (410 W Seventh St), a 36k SF retail building in the heart of DTLA's Jewelry District, changed hands for $14.7M or over $400/SF.

ALTC Realty co-managing partner Alan Lu, who repped the seller, tells us this marks a record price for a Class-C retail building constructed during the "original Jewelry District era." It's also one of the few retail buildings that have been sold in the Jewelry District, amid a wave of hotel and office sales. The property features jewelry kiosks with multiple vendors on the ground floor, much like the jewelry wholesale businesses from the old days. "People would come by and go from kiosk to kiosk looking at watches" and other baubles, he says. The seller is a family owner-user that was in the jewelry business itself, and owned the building for decades. The buyer, New York-based real estate investment firm Atlas Capital, was represented by Industry Partners.

Alan sees 410 W Seventh as being at the center of an investment boom, given the many buildings nearby that are either under renovation or on the market for sale. Case in point: NY-based Sydell Group's purchase of Giannini Place (Seventh and Olive streets) for conversion to a NoMad Hotel. Whole Foods opened up a block away less than a month ago, he adds. For the past couple of years, all the land deals in DTLA were by foreign investors, but he's seeing increased investment in retail by domestic funds and sources. The Seventh Street and Broadway corridor has become a conduit of activity and momentum for retail, he says. Alan has completed some $60M in deals in the LA area over the past 12 months, and most of the bigger deals have been in this area, including recent warehouse and vacant lot deals.


Champion Real Estate Co snapped up the 87-unit Ancelle Apartments (701 S Gramercy Dr) for $13.4M, marking the firm's first foray into Koreatown. Champion partner Parker Champion tells us the company sees similarities between Koreatown and Hollywood—another market Champion is active in—such as density and mass transit, with the Wilshire/Western Metro Station just a few blocks away. In addition, the location boasts a Walk Score of 91/100, and Parker notes there's a plethora of things for young renters to do. (Fun fact: Koreatown is LA County's most densely populated district and has the largest concentration of nightclubs, 24-hour businesses and restaurants in SoCal.)

The company expects Ancelle, an attractive, historic property built in the 1920s, to have high renter demand compared to other properties in the area because of its historic nature, Parker says. The building is comprised almost entirely of studios with efficient layouts, allowing for low absolute rents. The property includes five new apartments that the seller had begun converting from some abandoned retail. According to Parker, this old retail space was in the basement, and included a hair salon and a food commissary.

Kennedy Wilson's Andrew Levant repped both the buyer and seller, and also assisted Champion in securing the debt. The company plans to implement a renovation program, projecting a 30% increase in income once the property has been stabilized. In a separate transaction, Champion bought the adjacent property from a different seller. The company plans to demolish the existing structure to create more parking.


CityView sold four LA-area multifamily rental properties from its CityView Los Angeles Fund I for a total of $141.4M. Acquired between July 2011 and December 2012, the properties include Madison Toluca (above), a 110-unit complex in North Hollywood, which traded for $45.9M; Riverstone Brookstone, a 250-unit complex in Covina ($50.2M); Retreat on Sycamore, a 78-unit complex in Hollywood ($31M); and Vista Alicante, a 100-unit complex in La Mirada ($14.3M). CEO Sean Burton says the sales represent the final exits from 13 properties that CityView acquired between 2010 and 2012, during the height of the financial crisis. “During that time, we were able to take advantage of market dislocations and buy these very well located properties at a deep discount to replacement cost."


FAOF Foothill Views LLC sold Tribeca Apartments, a 96-unit apartment community in Azusa (200 S Azusa Ave), to a private buyer for $15.6M or $207/SF. Built in 1963, the property consists of 22 two-story buildings on just over three acres adjacent to the 210 Freeway. The seller positioned the asset as a best-in-class community within a tight rental market, according to ARA Newmark's Tyler Martin, who advised the seller along with Bryan Schellinger. Tribeca, which is 96% occupied, benefits from proximity to Azusa Pacific University and is just over one mile from downtown Azusa, where the Azusa Metrolink Gold Line extension is set for completion.


Taking advantage of strong investor interest in the South Florida metro area, Glendale-based American Realty Advisors sold the 171k SF Yamato Office Center in Boca Raton, FL. (No, it's not the building that got trashed in Die Hard.) Senior portfolio manager David Hubbs says the property's location and tenant profile, along with the growing strength of the region's office market, made it an opportune time to sell the two-building complex. CBRE repped the seller as well as the buyer, Florida-based real estate investment firm Adler Kawa.


Lowe Enterprises Investors has the Carolinas on its mind, acquiring two Hampton Inn hotels in Charlotte, NC, and Columbia, SC, in a JV with a foreign investment client. According to co-CEO Bleecker Seaman, the firm has been an active investor in both states due to the region's strong economy and stable job base. The 100-room Hampton Inn & Suites Charlotte-Arrowood Road is in Charlotte's growing I-77 corridor. Nearby employers include Microsoft, Xerox, Siemens, GE and Walmart. The 110-room Hampton Inn Columbia Northeast-Fort Jackson is near both I-77 and I-20, and about four miles from Fort Jackson, the US Army’s largest training base. LEI plans to invest $3.6M in capital improvements in the properties. Chris Miller and Russell Munn led the investment team for LEI.


CCL Holdings, a private investment company with hospitality and other real estate holdings in California and Hawaii, has acquired the 77-acre Two Bunch Palms resort in Desert Hot Springs (67-425 Two Bunch Palms Trail). The new owner plans to build a world-class spa/wellness center, additional hotel rooms, a second hot mineral springs grotto and swimming pool beginning next year. The 75-year-old resort recently underwent a renovation that included refurbishment of existing rooms, additional rooms and suites, a new farm-to-table restaurant, and infrastructure and public area improvements. This summer, Two Bunch Palms became the first carbon neutral resort in North America with the addition of a 550 kW 3.5-acre solar farm. The former owners, led by independent film producer Donald Kushner, retained the undeveloped land surrounding the property.


Sean Rosenzweig, a multifamily specialist with Marcus & Millichap in LA, was named an associate VP investments. Sean is one of 11 M&M agents throughout the US who were promoted to this position from senior associate.

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