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Hyatt Place Austin Downtown Purchased by Carey Watermark Investors for $87 Million

4 Apr 2014, 6:02 pm

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Hyatt Place Austin Downtown, the 296-room upscale select-service hotel located at 211 East 3rd Street was recently acquired by non-traded REIT Carey Watermark Investors. The hotel was ranked best in its category for the second year in a row by Business Travel News 2013 Hotel Chain Survey, and received the “Highest in Guest Satisfaction Among Upscale Hotel Chains” recognition by J.D. Power in 2013.

“The acquisition of the Hyatt Place Austin Downtown represented an opportunity to invest in a newly built, high quality, select-service property in one of the strongest domestic hotel markets,” says Michael Medzigian, Chief Executive Officer of CWI. “As the first newly built Hyatt-branded hotel in downtown Austin in 30 years, we believe the property is well positioned to capture market share.  Given the attractive purchase price, central Austin location and exciting growth prospects of the Austin market, we believe that the investment will be a solid cash flow-generating addition to our portfolio.”

Hyatt Place Austin Downtown is located in the heart of the “Fastest Growing City in America” (Forbes Magazine 2013), close to the Austin Convention Center, the Sixth Street entertainment district, the State Capitol building, and the University of Texas campus. Companies such as Dell, Apple, AMD, Whole Foods, Silicon Labs, and over 50 restaurants are nearby, and the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport is only 15 minutes away.

The property was built in 2013 and is comprised of 17 stories with 1,800 square feet of high-tech meeting and function place. Amenities include an indoor pool, StayFit at Hyatt fitness center, free Wi-Fi, and free public computers with remote printing throughout the hotel.

The sale price was of $87 million and $3.9 million of acquisition-related costs and minor improvements; the transaction was financed with $56.5 million of debt. White Lodging Services Corporation will continue to operate the hotel under a long term management agreement.



HFF Closes Sale of Las Cimas IV in Austin

1 Apr 2014, 3:56 pm

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Las Cimas IV, the newest of the Las Cimas Buildings, has changed owners. Holliday Fenoglio Fowler L.P. (HFF) marketed the property on behalf of the seller, KBS Capital Advisors, and procured the buyer, Clarion Partners.

The five-story Class A office property was constructed in 2008 on a 9.65-acre site, totaling 138,000 square feet. It is located at 901 South Capital of Texas Highway, in the reputable area of West Lake Hills, about five miles west of downtown at Loop 360 and Bee Caves Road. Amenities include a two story lobby entry, 4/1,000 structured parking with covered walkway, and showers on site.

At the time of the sale, occupancy was at 93.5 percent; tenants include Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Intersil Corporation.

HFF is a leading provider of commercial real estate and capital markets services, operating out of 22 offices nationwide. With over 30 years of experience and more than 600 industry professionals, the firm averages more than three closings per business day with transactions ranging from $1 million to over $2 billion.

Formed in 2006, KBS Capital Advisors has made investments of more than $11 billion in commercial real estate and real estate related investments. With headquarters in Newport Beach, Calif., KBS operates out of eight regional offices, and since its creation, KBS has formed five non-traded REITs.

New York-based Clarion Partners has been on the real estate investment manager for 32 years. They have over $30 billion in total assets under management and over 200 institutional investors, both domestic and international, and employees in the United States, Brazil, and the UK.

Photo courtesy of Las Cimas IV



Phase III of The Preserve at Mayfield Ranch Has Started

24 Mar 2014, 5:36 am

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Only twenty minutes away from Downtown Austin, between the Round Rock Mayfield neighborhood, Cedar Park, and Georgetown, is a gated, master-planned community that features an urban lifestyle and modern home designs. The developers recently announced the launch of Phase III of the project.

After a successful Phase II, which is almost sold out, presales are now being accepted for the third one. Furthermore, special incentives are offered on homes in Phase III, as per David Blackburn, President of award-winning developer Blackburn Communities.

“The success of The Preserve at Mayfield Ranch is everything we could have imagined and more,” Blackburn says. “Homeowners in the first two phases love living so close to three of the top-rated small cities in the U.S., and having Austin just a 20-minute drive away. The incentives we’re offering for Phase III presales are our way of giving back and saying, ‘thank you’ for making The Preserve at Mayfield Ranch such a warm, wonderful place to live.”

The Preserve is a quiet, modern garden home community that offers seven floor plans to future residents, ranging in size from, 1297 square feet to 2,609 square feet, each with its own covered patio. Home features include granite countertops, ceramic tile, cathedral ceilings, and state-of-the-art GE appliances, customizable to individual style.

Adjacent to it there is an 800-acre regional park, including a 200-acre endangered species preserve; 11 soccer fields, tennis courts, walking and biking paths, wildflowers, and wildlife complete the recreational surroundings. Prices start in the low $200,000s.

Photo courtesy of The Preserve at Mayfield Ranch



Titan Bank Announces the Acquisition of Its Third Self Storage Property through Funding Loan

24 Mar 2014, 4:57 am

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Titan Bank, NA announced the acquisition of a 342 unit Self Storage property in Austin through the funding of a $985,000 loan, marking its third Self Storage property. With this transaction they now own and manage approximately 1,000 self-storage units.

Titan is engaged in this asset class, continuously looking to develop referral relationships across the country within the category, as well as all “owner user” types of commercial real estate. It offers 7 to 10 business day credit decisions, provides loan proposals within 24 hours of receiving the requisite information, and an expedited closing process.

“Titan Bank provided the long term financing for the purchase of this facility by a seasoned owner operating of self-storage properties.  This acquisition added 342 units and 45,775 square feet of storage space to the borrowers business.  The borrowers secured a SBA 7A loan which is a fully amortizing, 25 year term loan, that gives them the flexibility of a lower payment compared with a standard conventional loan.  With this lower payment, the borrowers will have the ability to complete some additional improvements they have planned for the property in the near term,” says Pete O’Hern, senior vice president of Titan Bank.

Through this funding loan Titan extends its lead in the SBA, USDA, and small business lending sector. Recently, Titan Bank was awarded by the U.S. Government Small Business Administration the Rising Star Award, which recognizes it as one of the few remaining chartered banks with primary focus on loans to small companies.



HFF Represents JCI Residential in the Sale of Silverado Crossings Class A Multi-housing Community

7 Mar 2014, 1:11 am

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

The newly constructed Silverado Crossing has been purchased by the Meagher Family Trust; JCI Residential was the seller, represented by HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P.). Terms of the transaction were undisclosed, but the acquisition of the complex ran its course free and clear of debt, projecting full stabilization.

The development is located in Austin’s suburb Buda on Interstate 35, at 1480 Cabelas Drive. Construction of the 300-unit multi-housing community was completed in 2013. Silverado Crossing offers one-, two-, and three-bedroom units that range in size between 625 square feet and 1,291 square feet. Unit amenities include granite kitchens and baths, oval garden bathtubs, 9-foot ceilings, island kitchen with pantry, yards for pets, full-size washer and dryer connections, and exterior storage. Community amenities feature a resort-style swimming pool, dog watering stations, concierge services in clubhouse, fitness center, movie theater, and sand volleyball court.

Silverado Crossing has found an uncommon way to differentiate itself from other residential communities. They’ve created an extensive resident event calendar, featuring weekly events such as “Weird Wine Wednesdays”, yoga classes, and movie nights. On a monthly basis community cooking classes and complimentary breakfast & coffee are organized too. Moreover, Silverado Crossing residents receive the exclusive “Live in Buda” club card, a discount program for Buda area businesses which provides special rates on shopping, restaurants, and services.

“Silverado Crossing is one of the hottest properties in this burgeoning submarket; when HFF began marketing it was at 60 percent occupancy and by the time the property was under contract occupancy had already increased to 73 percent,” said Sean Sorrell, senior managing director who led the sales team representing JCI Residential. “Given the record levels of leasing, the property traded as if fully stabilized with no discounts given for leasing/occupancy levels.”

Photo courtesy of Silverado Crossing Facebook Page



New West Cypress Hills Elementary School Will Open This Year Courtesy of MileStone Community Builders

5 Mar 2014, 6:24 pm

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Only 30 minutes from Austin’s downtown lie some of the most stunning views of beautiful hill country land, hundreds of acres accessible to greenbelts, trails, and parks surrounding the West Cypress Hills Lake Travis Community. The builder, MileStone Community Builders LLC, recently announced that the new West Cypress Hills Elementary School will open in 2014.

They chose an interesting marketing strategy, committing to pay $500 for each new home sold in West Cypress Hills. Interested home buyers can receive all needed information by attending one of the informative sessions scheduled by the developer on the West Cypress Hills Elementary School opening. The sessions require registration as space is limited.

“We are delighted to help bring a new school to the award winning Lake Travis ISD and unveil the West Cypress Hills Elementary School,” says Garrett Martin, President and CEO, MileStone Community Builders. “This new community really delivers the pinnacle of luxury hill country living and offers the perfect location for growing families with its expansive views, large greenbelt homesites, exceptional amenities and top rated school district.”

The builder offers a selection of 12 semi-customizable floor plans of 1 and 2 story homes, ranging in size from 1997 square feet to 3590 square feet starting at $289’s and $382’s respectively. State-of-the art designs including elegant master suits, gourmet kitchens, covered patios and media/game rooms are part of the package. The overall living experience is a luxurious one, close to shopping areas, schools, entertainment, dining, parks, and easy access to Lake Travis.

Photo courtesy of West Cypress Hills Elementary.



Round Rock’s Cypress Semiconductor Campus Acquired by World Class Capital Group

26 Feb 2014, 4:12 pm

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

The long abandoned Cypress Semiconductor campus in Round Rock has found its new owner. Austin-based World Class Capital Group LLC announced the acquisition from Cypress Semiconductor Corporation who closed the facility in 2009.

The cost of the transaction has not been disclosed. The property is located behind the IKEA retail development at the intersection of Interstate Highway 35 North and University Drive, extending to Cypress Boulevard. It spans over 118 acres and according to a news release, it will undergo serious renovations and redevelopment processes.

The new owner plans to renovate the massive 98,700-square-foot manufacturing facility and repurpose it mainly into an office and flex/industrial complex.  According to Nate Paul, World Class’ President and CEO, the campus redevelopment will include various uses such as office, retail, flex, and residential.

“We are excited to work with the city of Round Rock to plan and create a new mixed-use project that will enhance the community” Paul says. “The strong central Texas economy is a national leader in positive job growth, which creates significant demand for commercial space and housing. We look forward to meeting this demand by delivering a high-quality, mixed-use, master planned development.”

World Class Capital Group is a privately owned real estate firm that focuses on real estate investment, development, and management nationwide. It owns over 5 million square feet in 12 states and 23 markets in its national portfolio.



Austin Hampton Inn Hotel Sale Arranged by Marcus & Millichap

12 Feb 2014, 7:38 pm

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

The Hampton Inn hotel located at 4141 Governors Row in Austin has changed owners. Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services arranged the sale of the six-story 123-room hotel, without disclosing the terms of the sale.

The seller, a joint venture between a California family trust and a Texas-based private investor, was represented by a Marcus and Millichap trio consisting of Allan Miller, associate vice president investments in the San Antonio office, Chris Gomes, senior associate in Dallas, and Jake Gaddy, associate in Austin. The buyer, Moody National REIT 1 Inc., was advised by David Greenberg, vice president investments in the Fort Lauderdale office.

“Assets like this Hampton Inn rarely become available in Austin,” says Miller. “This is a premier franchise in one of the fastest-growing cities and hotel markets in the country.”

Greenberg added: “The hotel’s 10-year franchise was renewed with Hilton Hotels & Resorts in July 2012.”

The property is located off the intersection of Interstate 35 and Texas State Highway 71, six miles from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. It’s only five minutes south of downtown Austin and 10 miles from a new Formula One racetrack. The hotel was built in 1997 and underwent extensive renovations in 2012. Amenities include a business center, a meeting room of 430 square feet, swimming room and jogging and walking tracks.

After a very successful 2013 when the four sold 27 hotels valued at $169 million throughout seven states, Greenberg concludes: “We expect 2014 to be a record year for hotel transactions; with our unique value proposition, Marcus & Millichap will undoubtedly continue to be the dominant hotel broker in the nation.”

Photo courtesy of Hampton Inn Austin/Airport Area South.



Emerson Opens Third Global Innovation Center in Austin

3 Feb 2014, 9:31 am

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Emerson Process Management opened its third global Innovation Center – Process Systems and Solutions in Round Rock, near Austin, Tex. The other two centers are located in Marshalltown, Iowa – a unique research & development facility that develops and tests flow control applications and technologies – and in Pune, India – a center where world-class software application is developed.

The new innovation center is the global headquarters for Emerson’s automation systems and project services business that provides leadership for process control systems development, integrated operations consulting, project execution and human centered design. The businesses that benefit from Emerson’s latest center come from various industries such as oil and gas, refining, chemicals, power, life sciences, food and beverages, and metals and mining. Its brands include PlantWeb™, Syncade™, DeltaV™, Fisher®, Bettis™, Micro Motion®, Rosemount®, Daniel™, Ovation™ and AMS Suite.

“No other facility in the world can do what our new Emerson Innovation Center can do,” says Jim Nyquist, president of process systems and solutions for Emerson Process Management. “To us, this campus is more than just an expanded space — it actually is a catalyst for innovation,” he adds. “It’s here where we solve some of our customers’ toughest challenges.”

At a cost that reached almost $70 million, the Round Rock development encompasses 282,000 square feet that comprises several disciplines under the same roof – the Integrated Operations Center where customers can learn how to remotely manage operations and collaborate with experts, a consulting and engineering practice, a product testing lab, and a support center.

Emerson opened its first Austin facility in 1981 with 50 employees. The new building increases the number to almost 800 in Austin alone, and 2,500 throughout Texas.

Photo courtesy of Google.



Brohn Homes Announces New Homes in Austin’s Pflugerville

24 Jan 2014, 9:05 pm

By Anca Gagiuc, Associate Editor

Brohn Homes, a family operated and owned business with focus on custom home building, has announced the start of construction in Pflugerville’s established neighborhood The Commons at Rowe Lane. Prices start in the $220,000s.

The community is only 25 minutes from Downtown Austin with easy access to I-35 and Highways 130 and 45. The nearby Stone Hill Town Center, La Frontera, and Round Rock Premium outlets are just a few of the shopping options, at the same time convenient to major employers such as Dell, Apple, Samsung and National Instruments. For recreation the community offers miles of hike and bike trails, and the nearness of the beautiful Lake Pflugerville.  A large community center and a swimming pool are part of the community’s amenities.

The Commons at Rowe Lane offer floor plans that range in size from 1,793 square feet to 3,490 square feet. The future owners can choose from nine available floor plans that feature three to five bedrooms, two to four baths, and multiple living areas, displayed on one or two story elevation. Flexible outdoor living spaces are available in many of the plans. The warm New French Country Style homes feature gourmet kitchens with stainless steel appliances, wood burning fireplaces and mahogany front doors.

Pflugerville has been named one of the 50 best places to live in America for the last two years by Money Magazine due to strong job opportunities, great schools, low crime, quality health care, and various recreational activities.

“All the advantages cited by Money Magazine are the very reasons we chose to build in new homes for sale in Pflugerville at The Commons at Rowe Lane,” says Aaron Boenig, owner and managing member of Brohn Homes. “It’s a beautiful community located close to I-35, Highways 130 and 45, major employers, and Lake Pflugerville recreation. Everything a family needs is minutes from their front door.”

Photo courtesy of Brohn Homes.







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