Luxury Orlando Apartment Community Changes Owners, Name24 May 2013, 7:54 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Leading national apartment investment and management company Bell Partners Inc. recently acquired the award-winning Landmarking at Universal Apartments in Orlando, Fla. for an undisclosed amount. The transaction, which closed on May 15, also brought a new name for the 310-unit luxury community, with the new owners renaming it Bell at Universal.
The acquisition brings Bell Partners’ multifamily investment mark up to $150 million.
Joe Cannon, vice president of Bell Partners, said: “Bell at Universal is an upscale community which is uniquely positioned within the Orlando market, and we are pleased to acquire this highly desirable property. As a key acquisition in one of our select target markets, Bell at Universal is an excellent strategic addition to our central Florida portfolio.”
Bell at Universal, winner of the 2012 Aurora Award for Architectural Excellence, is a 310-unit garden-style community offering one- and two-bedroom homes with available den options. Its location places it just steps away from Universal Studios Orlando and 15 minutes from downtown, making it accessible from South Kirkman Rd., Florida’s Turnpike and I-4.
The community’s luxury amenities include a resort-like swimming pool, clubhouse, cabana with a fireplace, fitness center, theatre room, and internet café. The community is located in close proximity to retail destinations, entertainment venues and employment centers.
Marcus & Millichap’s latest Orlando market report reveals that multifamily transaction velocity remained practically unchanged over the past 12 months, but the number of deals was one of the highest recorded since before the recession.
During the past year, the number of properties selling for more than $10 million has modestly increased, while deals from $1 to $10 million have declined. Buyers are motivated to purchase metro Orlando properties as the job market keeps strengthening and property operations seem to be improving.
Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap
Image via Bell Apartment Living
Metropolitan Resort Orlando Soon to Become World’s Largest Econo Lodge10 May 2013, 6:16 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
California Hotels has big plans in store for the 297-room Metropolitan Resort. Through its subsidiary, 8444 Investments LLC, the company plans to convert the property to The World’s Largest Econo Lodge.
Work is set to start on the 8444 Austrian Court Way property in June, the developers planning to keep the hotel open for the entire duration of the renovation and improvement process.
With a prime location on the world renowned International Drive in Orlando, Florida, The World’s Largest Econo Lodge will consist of 297 rooms with king or double bed accommodations, and feature a full delicatessen, free Wi-Fi, coffee makers, refrigerators and iron and ironing boards inside all rooms. The Econo Lodge will also be connected to the YMCA Aquatic Center, equipped with three indoor pools, a large cardio fitness center, and four indoor racquetball courts. All guests of the hotel will receive complimentary access to the Aquatic Center.
“We’re proud to announce our affiliation with Choice Hotels and being able to bring something grand to the table as we initiate what I hope to be a long and prosperous relationship together,” says Remo Polselli , CEO of California Hotels Corporation. “The real winner here are the customers and the city of Orlando, this couldn’t happen to better people and a better place in Orlando, International Drive.”
All property improvements will be completed by October 2013. Apparently, this is merely the first in a series of Choice Hotel franchises California Hotels has planned for 2013, but no further details have been released.
The Metropolitan Resort is not the only Orlando-area hotel heading for renovation; the 123-room Hilton Garden Inn Orlando North/Lake Mary will soon undergo a $2 million renovation, as new owner GF Management plans to improve the recently acquired property. The company bought the property last week, and the acquisition is this year’s first for GF Management. Like the Metropolitan Resort, the Hilton Garden InnOrlando North/Lake Mary will also stay open for the entire duration of the renovation.
Image via HotelClub
New Vista at Lost Lake Units to Add to Growing Local Multifamily Inventory6 May 2013, 5:56 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
McCann Realty Partners, the company that bought the Vista at Lost Lake apartments in Clermont last year for $28 million, is now moving forward with the project by starting construction on a second phase.
Phase II will add 192 units to the existing 276 that were built by Citrus Tower Development LLC in 2007. Located on State Road 50 and U.S. Highway 27, Vista at Lost Lake boasts one-, two- and three-bedroom units, equipped with nine foot ceilings, full size washers and dryers, oversized pantries, private solariums and balconies, and spacious closets.
Existing amenities include complete concierge services; a fitness center featuring state-of-the-art equipment; sauna; resort-style swimming pool; car care center; and a private residents’ club room complete with billiard tables, elegantly designed seating areas and lounge.
The new three-story complex will be adjacent to the existing one, and is scheduled for completion at year end, with leasing activity to start in September 2013. The combined 468 apartment homes will be managed by Pegasus Residential, LLC. While development costs were not disclosed, the construction loan was funded by Wells Fargo Bank NA, and the project was financed through a joint venture with an equity partner, the Orlando Business Journal reports.
Prospects for the Orlando multifamily sector continue to brighten as the local economy picks up. Construction activity in the first quarter brought four new projects to the market, adding approximately 1,300 units to local inventory—all market-rate rentals, spread across four submarkets. According to a Marcus & Millichap report, more than 2,000 units were completed in the past four quarters, a substantial jump from the 1,400 rentals placed in service in the previous 12 months.
The second phase of the Vista at Lost Lake apartments will add to the approximately 2,700 apartments planned for the metro area—the highest annual output in the past four years—and the 2,500 rentals currently under construction and slated for delivery this year and next.
Chart courtesy of Marcus & Millichap
Image via The Vista at Lost Lake – Clermont Facebook page
Florida Hospital Breaks Ground on Emergency Department, Plans Further Expansion26 Apr 2013, 8:11 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Florida Hospital East Orlando recently celebrated its upcoming expansion, that will double the size of its current emergency department, during a special groundbreaking ceremony. Both hospital and community leaders attended the event and planted 260 flowers—a number that stands for the average number of patients seen on a daily basis in the emergency department.
In 2012, the Florida Hospital East Orlando emergency department treated more than 83,000 patients. As a result of the high demand for emergency care, the hospital has decided to double the size of its emergency department from 36 to 65 beds. The expansion will also include several child-friendly rooms with nature themes and LED lighting along with kid-friendly waiting areas to provide a more calming environment for children. Construction for the emergency department is expected to be completed in summer 2014. When the expansion is complete, Florida Hospital East Orlando will be able to treat 100,000 patients a year.
Florida Hospital East Orlando will also be building out the fifth floor of its main patient tower. This expansion—set for completion in July 2013—will add up to 40 private patient beds. In order to expand surgical services offered by the hospital; the addition of 40 new beds will bring the total number to 265.
“As the East Orlando community has grown over the years, Florida Hospital East Orlando has made enhancements to grow and expand in order to provide the best care possible in a convenient setting,” said Mike Thompson, administrator of Florida Hospital East Orlando. “Our goal is to provide patients with more efficient service and access to high quality medical care in their own backyard.”
It is estimated that the overall expansion process will generate about 75 new construction jobs, as well as new clinical jobs within the hospital.
Images via Florida Hospital
$30M Oviedo Multifamily Community Now Underway19 Apr 2013, 6:52 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Oviedo, Fla. will soon add 275 residential units to the local inventory, as Jacksonville-based LandSouth Construction begins construction on the $30 million Park Place Apartments and Oviedo on the Park.
The project—developed by PAC Land Development of Winter Park, Fla.—consists of four buildings with 275 residences and a multi-purpose clubhouse. Park Place Apartments and Oviedo on the Park will rise at State Road 434 (Alafaya Trail) and Mitchell Hammock Road, placing the community within proximity to a budding entertainment, retail, restaurant and employment hub.
Park Place Apartments will feature 14 floor plans of one-, two- and three-bedroom residences with one or two baths. The units will range in size from 797 to 1,396 square feet of living space, some of them including covered patios and balconies. Interior elements will include frameless European style shaker cabinets, simulated wood grain vinyl plank flooring, tiled baths, crown molding and kitchen islands.
“We are pleased to have the opportunity to build another high-quality multifamily community in partnership with PAC Land Development. These beautiful garden apartment homes in the heart of Oviedo will be adjacent to parks, shopping, restaurants and retail to attract residents who enjoy an amenity-rich lifestyle and convenient location,” said James Pyle, president and CEO of LandSouth Construction.
The development, scheduled for completion in the summer of 2014, will have the signature of Architect Charlan-Brock & Associates.
Image via Charlan-Brock & Associates
Valencia, UCF Officials Dedicate New Building at Osceola Campus15 Apr 2013, 6:27 pm
Valencia College officials, along with officials from the University of Central Florida, dedicated the newest building on Valencia’s Osceola Campus on April 11, marking the expansion of the Valencia-UCF partnership in Osceola County.
The new 150,000-square-foot Building 4 is the largest building on any Valencia campus; the four-story building was designed to house 18 classrooms, the campus library, a bookstore, 10 science labs, math and computer labs, as well as the campus cafeteria and a coffee bar. Space has also been set aside for 18 offices for UCF faculty members and administrative staff.
Designed by architectural firm Hunton-Brady and built by contractor Clancy & Theys, Building 4’s construction costs were approximately $35 million, with UCF contributing $7.5 million.
UCF, which operates a regional campus at Valencia’s Osceola Campus, already offers a handful of degrees at the Kissimmee campus, ranging from business to political science. With this expanded presence on the Osceola campus, UCF plans to add a diverse array of bachelor’s degrees to the Osceola campus by fall 2013, including degrees in biomedical science, criminal justice, psychology, public administration and health services administration.
Building 4 was intentionally designed to set itself apart from any other classroom building on the campus. The outdoor and indoor spaces were designed to provide meeting and study space for students, courtyards provide shade and places for students to relax, and the library features a huge reading room with windows that overlook the campus. Architect Maurizio Maso, who designed the building, said the vision for Building 4 came from a meeting with Shugart. “He said the architecture should be soaring, inspiring and grounded—and that if Osceola Campus is a village, Building 4 should be the cathedral.”
The building, which opened for classes in January, has quickly become the center of student life for the 12,000 students who take classes at the Kissimmee campus.
Image via Valencia College
Developers Kick-Start $38M Transit-Oriented Apartment Community in Orlando5 Apr 2013, 2:40 pm
A new community is set to rise in downtown Orlando, as developers Wood Partners and The Ustler Group have joined forces and started working together on a 248-unit urban apartment community called The Ivy – Residences at Health Village.
Set on 3.4 acres acquired by the developers in Florida Hospital’s Health Village in November 2012, the $38 million apartment community will stand amid the hospital’s 172-acre Health Village—a mixed-use, transit-oriented, master planned urban development. Centered around health and wellness, Health Village features a variety of uses including medical, research, medical office, commercial, hotel and multifamily.
The Ivy—Residences at Health Village will consist of two mid-rise buildings and an integrated parking garage, and it will offer 248 one-, two- and three-bedroom units averaging 941 square feet, with a total living area of 233,368 square feet. The first units at The Ivy are scheduled for completion in late 2013 or early 2014 with full project completion and availability of all units set for mid-2014.
Baker Barrios serves as design architect, with Charlan Brock & Associates as the architect-of-record and Wood Florida Builders as the general contractor. GAI Consultants has been chosen as the civil engineer for the project, while Libra Design Group will be the landscape architect. Wood Partners and Ustler have a marketing relationship with Florida Hospital to provide their employees with the first opportunity to lease apartments at The Ivy.
The Ivy could be the first true transit-oriented development project to start vertical construction in Orlando since the formal announcement of SunRail. A SunRail station is part of Health Village and will be operational as of 2014. The Ivy will be just one SunRail stop away from the premier dining and shopping offerings of Winter Park’s Park Avenue, and two stops from the main downtown Orlando stop at Church Street Station in the Central Business District, which is in proximity to the newly completed Amway Center and the under-construction Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.
Image courtesy of Wood Partners
Winter Park’s University Plaza Shopping Center Gets $10.5M Financing25 Mar 2013, 3:59 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, working exclusively on behalf of borrower North American Development Group, has recently arranged $10.5 million in financing for the grocery-anchored University Plaza shopping center in Winter Park.
HFF director Chris Drew, senior managing directors Paul Stasaitis and Danny Finkle, and senior real estate analyst Jose Carrazana led the HFF team representing North American Development Group; they have successfully secured the 15-year, fixed-rate loan through Prudential Mortgage Capital Company.
“NADG is a sophisticated borrower that is taking advantage of historically low interest rates to lock in highly accretive long-term, fixed-rate financing for a core asset in their portfolio,” said Drew. “We continue to see incredible demand from top-tier life insurance companies for fixed-rate loans on grocery-anchored retail throughout the state.”
Located at 4000 North Goldenrod Road at the intersection of University Boulevard in Winter Park, the 77,918-square-foot University Plaza shopping center is currently 95 percent leased, with Publix as the anchor tenant. Set approximately 10 miles northeast of downtown Orlando, the building was redeveloped in 2011.
Marcus & Millichap estimates that the Orlando retail market will most likely strengthen in 2013, given the upcoming employment gains, population growth and increased tourism. Retailers are already responding to market improvements, several having already made public their expansion plans. The gas station/convenience store segment is especially active with RaceTrac, 7-Eleven and Wawa all adding multiple sites this year. Other retailers with new stores under way include Dollar General, Family Dollar and Walmart.
Image via Loopnet
Chart Courtesy of Marcus & Millichap
Wood Partners Delivers First Units of Luxury $32.7M Alta at Lake Eve11 Mar 2013, 7:17 pm
Wood Partners is making headlines for the second time this month; after having recently broken ground on its 200-unit Rialto apartment complex in southwest Orlando, the company is now announcing the official opening of its newest multifamily community, the $32.7-million Alta at Lake Eve.
Currently, 60 apartment homes are ready for move-in, and the remaining units are available for pre-lease, with the official completion date set for April 2013.
The 264-unit luxury apartment community consists of four four-story mid-rise buildings and a couple of two-story carriage home buildings. Featuring the latest in resort-style amenities, from a private movie theater and state-of-the-art fitness center to high-efficiency washer-dryer units in every residence, Alta at Lake Eve residents will also benefit from a luxurious two-story clubroom that also includes a conference room, executive business center, coffee lounge, reading room, billiards room and game room.
The controlled-access development boasts one of the area’s best locations, at 12515 Lake Square Circle, two miles from Walt Disney World and about five miles from Universal Studio, Sea World and the Orange County Convention Center. Residents are just steps from the I-Ride trolley that facilitates access to the Orlando Premier Outlet Mall, as well as hundreds of restaurants and night spots.
“Location is a major selling point, but this development is unique and has a WOW factor from the moment you walk in the door,” said Joe Garibay, Southeast Regional Property Manager for Wood Residential Services. “Alta at Lake Eve is a very modern mid-rise with wood-plank flooring, espresso cabinets, elevators and high-end outdoor features.”
The 264 units include executive suites; 656-square-foot one-bedroom models; 1,132- to 1,200-square-foot two-bedroom, two-bath models; and 1,476-square-foot three-bedroom, two-bath models. Patios, balconies, sun rooms and garages are also available.
The 9.69-acre community is Wood Partners’ 11th project in Orlando. Since 1998, the company has developed 27 projects with a total valuation of $1.1 billion in Florida. Wood Florida Builders, LLC—Wood Partners’ Florida construction branch—served as builder for the project, while Charlan Brock & Associates was the architect.
Image Courtesy of Wood Partners
HFF Secures $50M Refinancing for Three Central Florida Office Properties3 Mar 2013, 9:50 pm
Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, working on behalf of the borrower—a joint venture between The Praedium Group and Tower Realty Partners, Inc.—has secured $50 million in refinancing for three Central Florida office properties.
The three properties, totaling more than 780,000 square feet of office space, include Quorum Center and Oakridge Office Park in Orlando and 850 Trafalgar in Maitland.
The loans were secured in two separate transactions; the 10-year, fixed-rate loans for Quorum Center and 850 Trafalgar were placed with UBS Real Estate Finance Group, while a 10-year, fixed-rate loan for Oakridge Office Park was placed with Morgan Stanley. According to HFF, all three non-recourse, securitized loans were priced in the mid four percent range.
The HFF team representing the borrower was led by Michael Weinberg, a director in HFF’s Orlando office, along with directors Elliott Throne and Chris Drew and senior real estate analyst Jorge Portela from HFF’s Miami office.
According to CBRE, the Orlando office market ended a five quarter run of positive absorption with negative absorption of more than 225,000 square feet in the fourth quarter of 2012. The local market is still trying to regain its footprint following the deterioration of market fundamentals in mid-2008. Improving market fundamentals in strong submarkets have been mostly negated due to weakness in other submarkets. Landlords have been tightening up on free rent and other concessions and rents have made no substantial improvements overall. As the vacancy rate for Class A product continues to inch downward, developers’ confidence will improve and formerly stalled projects may be revived. However, inconsistency throughout the Orlando area makes it difficult to predict where the market is headed.
Chart courtesy of CBRE
Image: Quorum Center via Tower Realty Partners
Rida Development’s $200M Transit-Oriented Project Gets Preliminary Approval22 Feb 2013, 8:03 pm
RIDA Development’s master plan for a $200 million, multi-phased mixed-use development won the approval of Orlando’s Municipal Planning Board on Tuesday, and must now go before the City Council.
The ambitious project was first announced in 2011, when Mayor Buddy Dyer included RIDA’s idea in his State of Downtown speech.
The mixed-use Central Station project will spread over a 5.6-acre parcel adjacent to the Lynx Central Station and across Orange Avenue from the Orange County Courthouse. The location facilitates a direct connection to SunRail, the 61-mile commuter train system scheduled to launch in 2014, making the Central Station the first example of transit-oriented development tied to the SunRail. According to a plan previously released by the developer, a spine running through the center of the complex would link Orange Avenue with downtown’s main SunRail platform at the Lynx center.
The 5.6-acre tract, considered to be the largest undeveloped parcel downtown, was purchased by RIDA Development for $15.1 million in 2008 from Palm Beach Land Trust—that also had plans for a $250 million mixed-use project tied into the commuter-rail system. Previous to Palm Beach Land Trust, the property was owned by Ron Pizzuti, who proposed Orlando City Center—a tower topped by a large open cube—but the project was shut down by the Federal Aviation Administration as its height would have endangered the Orlando Executive Airport air traffic.
The development consists of three phases, with the first estimated at approximately $100 million. The first phase of the development will add a126-room hotel, a 275-unit apartment building with a 411-space parking garage, and a 97-space parking lot accompanied by ground-floor shops and restaurants.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, if the master plan gets the final approval from the City Council, construction could start this year on the residential component—where Crescent Resources will serve as RIDA Development’s multifamily partner.
Image: Orlando, Lake Eola aerial
Orlando Fashion Square Mall Trades for $35M; Duke Realty Closes Five Notable Leases15 Feb 2013, 3:44 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust is pursuing its previously announced strategy of improving the quality of its portfolio by selling non-core assets. One of the first non-core assets to trade is Orlando Fashion Square Mall, recently sold in a $35 million cash transaction.
“The sale of Orlando Fashion Square and the previously announced sale of Phillipsburg Mall are further evidence of our commitment to the plan we’ve laid out to elevate the quality of our portfolio and improve our operating metrics. We are pleased with the terms of this transaction and look forward to continuing to achieve our strategic objectives,” said Joseph F. Coradino, CEO of PREIT.
The 1.1 million-square-foot Orlando Fashion Square Mall is anchored by Dillard’s, jcpenney, Macy’s and Sears. According to PREI, sales at the property were $233 per square foot and non-anchor occupancy was 80.7 percent as of December 31, 2012, both of which were below PREIT’s portfolio averages. The property was part of the collateral pool securing the company’s 2010 Credit Facility. The recent sale resulted in a gain of approximately $0.6 million to be recognized in the first quarter of 2013.
In other commercial real estate news, Duke Realty’s Central Florida office closed five leases totaling 435,728 square feet at industrial properties in the Orlando area. The leases included a long-term renewal of 275,000 square feet with Ford Motor Company at Park 27 Distribution Center in Davenport, Fla., southwest of Orlando; new leases of 37,683 square feet with Alstyle Apparel and 19,300 square feet with FM Convention Contractors Inc. at Parksouth Distribution Center; and renewals of 78,295 square feet with Benjamin Moore and 25,450 square feet with Universal Studios.
Duke Realty’s Tim Perry, vice president of leasing in Central Florida, represented the company in the five transactions.
Image: Orlando Fashion Square Mall via Google Maps
Wood Partners Kick-Starts 200-Unit Community in Southwest Orlando11 Feb 2013, 5:00 am
National multifamily developer Wood Partners will soon be adding 200 units on Spring Lake, at the entrance of Doctor Phillips, one of Orlando’s most desirable residential districts.
The apartment complex, dubbed The Rialto, will rise on a 5.95-acre site set at the northwest corner of Sand Lake Road and Turkey Lake Road in southwest Orlando. Plans include a five-story apartment building and 17,000 square feet of retail space, to be owned by The Wilder Companies—a Boston-based firm that specializes in retail real estate development, management and leasing.
The Rialto will consist of 200 units with one-, two and three-bedrooms, averaging 1,056 square feet. High-quality interiors will include ceramic flooring in kitchens, entries and baths; ceramic tub surrounds; nine-foot ceilings; stainless steel appliances; 42-inch cabinets with granite tops; and sleek, modern lighting. A total of 399 parking spaces will be available in an integrated parking garage, in addition to 59 spaces for retail and five spaces for the leasing office.
The site, with 350 feet of frontage on Sand Lake Road and 750 feet of frontage on Spring Lake, is in the middle of the premier dining and shopping offerings in Doctor Phillips, with major employment hubs such as Walt Disney World, Sea World, Universal Studies, and the Orange County Convention Center within a short distance.
“The site is well served by major transportation routes, major employers, area schools, retail stores and other support services,” said David Thompson, director for Wood Partners in Florida. “The proximity to excellent retail, prestigious Doctor Phillips address, outstanding lake views and superior school district distinguish the project from competitive offerings.”
Real Estate Capital Partners is Wood Partners’ equity partner in the project, with Synovus Bank as lender.
With a completion date set for July 2014, the project is expected to generate more than $20 million in local income, about $1.9 million in local taxes and government revenue, and more than 244 jobs over its 19-month construction period.
Image courtesy of Wood Partners
Highwoods Sells Two Assets for $14.6M; Kite Realty Buys Publix-Anchored Center4 Feb 2013, 4:02 pm
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Raleigh-based Highwoods Properties, Inc. has sold two non-core assets in Orlando for $14.6 million in cash. The two office properties—Metrowest Commerce Center and Cambridge in Orlando—encompass 134,000 square feet.
The two properties are reportedly 100 percent leased to a single entity and are expected to generate $1.3 million of cash net operating income in 2013. Highwoods will continue to serve as property manager of these assets in exchange for customary fees.
President and Chief Executive Officer of Highwoods Properties, Ed Fritsch, said, “The sale of these non-core assets, the majority of which is a single-story asset, is in sync with our ongoing work to continuously improve our portfolio. These assets were not strategic to our Orlando holdings, which consist primarily of Class A CBD properties.”
A 69,000-square-foot Publix Supermarket-anchored shopping center also recently traded in Orlando for a purchase price—exclusive of closing costs—of $11.6 million. Kite Realty Group Trust, a full-service, vertically integrated real estate investment trust, acquired the property.
The center is currently 99 percent leased and is located within close proximity to Waterford Lakes Village, another Kite Realty Group-owned property. The retail center draws from the solid trade area surrounding the University of Central Florida as well as the Eastwood, Stoneybrook, and Waterford Lakes master plan communities.
“This property is a well-positioned grocery-anchored center with strong credit. We will continue to selectively acquire well-located assets throughout the Midwest, Southeast, and Texas markets,” said John A. Kite, the Company’s chairman and CEO.
Image courtesy of Highwoods.com
718-Room Radisson Resort Orlando Trades, Prepares for Immediate Renovation25 Jan 2013, 6:46 pm
Radisson Resort Orlando – Celebration is now a member of the Interstate family, as a joint venture between Interstate Hotels & Resorts and Waramaug Hospitality LLC has recently acquired the 718-room hotel for an undisclosed amount.
While the new owners did not want to disclose the price for which the hotel traded, they have expressed their intent of conducting renovation work on the property, effective immediately. The $9 million renovation will consist of upgrades and enhancements to all 718 guest rooms, public areas, meeting space and mechanical systems.
Radisson Resort Orlando – Celebration is located 1.5 miles from Walt Disney World, directly off I-4 at Exit 64A and just 17 miles from the Orlando International Airport, on a 20-acre property. The resort also features 6,800 square feet of meeting and event space, five on-site dining venues, several types of pools, a gaming center, a sand volleyball court and two lighted tennis courts.
“As one of the top tourist destinations in Florida, Orlando was a natural choice for the hotel’s location and the Radisson Resort Orlando is minutes away from the city’s top attractions,” said Paul Nussbaum, Waramaug Hospitality’s chief executive officer. “With the prime setting and the approaching renovations, this hotel will thrive under Interstate’s operating expertise.”
Interstate Hotels & Resorts, Inc.—a subsidiary of a 50/50 joint venture between subsidiaries of Thayer Lodging and Jin Jiang—is at its fifth acquisition with Waramaug Hospitality. The joint venture has been advised in the transaction by Hospitality Funding LLC, a Palm Beach-headquartered boutique investment advisory firm.
The Radisson Resort was not the only Orlando-area hotel to trade hands recently. Summit Hotel Properties, Inc. has closed on the acquisition of both Hyatt Place-Universal and Hyatt Place-Convention Center as part of a $36.1 million deal that included a third property, located in Chicago. The new owner has entered into an agreement with Select Hotels Group, L.L.C., an affiliate of Hyatt, to operate each hotel.
Image via Google Places
Loews & Universal Break Ground on 1,800-Room Cabana Bay Beach Resort19 Jan 2013, 12:06 am
By Georgiana Mihaila, Associate Editor
Loews Hotels & Resorts and joint venture partner Universal Parks & Resorts have broken ground on one of the largest hotels currently under construction in the U.S—the 1800-unit Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort.
The hotel will be built on a 37-acre site within Universal Orlando Resort and adjacent to Universal’s Islands of Adventure—just off Hollywood Way and Turkey Lake Road. Pricing information, opening timeframes and room on-sale dates have not been released, but according to the official announcement, the Loews Hotels & Resorts-operated hotel is scheduled to open in 2014.
The new hotel will be themed differently than anything else currently available at Universal Orlando, by evoking the driving vacations many Americans grew up enjoying with their families. The developers plan on giving it a hip, vintage look, accented with bold design, dramatic, clean lines, bright, period colors and touches of neon.
Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort will offer two distinct experiences within the development’s multiple buildings: 900 family suites, capable of sleeping six, that include kitchen areas; and 900 standard guest rooms offering both moderate- and value-priced accommodations.
When the developers first announced the project, in July 2012, they stated that the new hotel will allow families to choose between value pricing or the higher level of benefits and service that come with staying at other on-site Universal Orlando hotels such as Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, the Hard Rock Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort. It will provide early park admission, proximity to Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios and resort-wide charging privileges, but it will not offer complimentary Universal Express Unlimited Access.
Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort is the fourth hotel in partnership with Universal Parks & Resorts.
“Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort project is a key component in our development plans,” said Paul Whetsell, president and CEO of Loews Hotels & Resorts. “Our partnership with Universal is integral to our growth as we strategically expand Loews Hotels.”
Loews Hotels & Resorts’ new Orlando hotel development groundbreaking news followed the announcement of the company’s most recent hotel acquisition, the 356-room Madison Hotel in the heart of Washington, D.C.
Image Courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort
Orlando University Center’s $33M Sale was 2012’s Second Largest Office Deal4 Jan 2013, 6:51 pm
Crocker Partners’ $33 million acquisition of the Orlando University Center office park in late December proved itself to be the second-largest office investment sale in Orlando for 2012.
The acquired portfolio includes five suburban office buildings—totaling 386,512 square feet on 27.12 acres—at 3452, 3504 and 3505 Lake Lynda Blvd., and 11301 and 11315 Corporate Blvd., just west of the University of Central Florida in Orlando. The office park was approximately 70 percent occupied by 56 local, regional and national tenants at the time of purchase. Current tenants include Woolpert Inc., Zenith Insurance, the Social Security Administration and Dignitas.
“This is a well-located office portfolio that offered the buyer the ability to add value in the future, as well as capitalize on the in-place cash flow today,” said Felberg. “Fortunately, there is a lot of competition for attractive institutional properties.”
Fred Beasley, SIOR, and Bret Felberg, CCIM, of Colliers International Central Florida and John Crotty, CCIM, of Colliers International South Florida represented the seller, JPMCC 2005-CIBC13 ORLANDVILLE OFFICES, LLC, for which LNR is the special servicer. The buyer, Crocker Partners, a real estate investment firm headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., represented itself.
The Colliers team worked in conjunction with the Auction.com platform and with Chuck Wolter of Archetype Mortgage Capital, which provided the financing for the transaction on behalf of the buyer, to complete the successful sale of the property.
Image: 3504 Lake Lynda Blvd via LoopNet
UCF Starts Renting Units at the $55M NorthView Student Housing Project2 Jan 2013, 5:31 pm
With opening set for Fall 2013, UCF Housing and Residence Life is now taking applications to rent units in the $55 million NorthView student housing project. Currently under development just across McCulloch Rd. from the UCF campus and Bright House Networks Stadium, the apartments are being developed by Alan Ginsburg and designed by Orlando-based Cuhaci & Peterson Architects LLC and Finfrock.
“UCF Housing has been chosen as the manager because we provide a seamless connection to university resources, such as academic advising and campus events, as well as systems like myUCF, which allows students to easily apply and pay for housing with scholarships, grants, and loans,” said Jimmy Moore, assistant director for UCF Housing and Residence Life.
The 600-bed NorthView project offers several floor plans, including two-bedroom, two-bath; four-bedroom, four-bath; and four-bed, four-bath lofts, which will have living rooms on both levels. The apartments will be fully furnished with modern appliances and furniture with upscale finishes. Electricity, high-speed wireless internet, cable TV, water and parking will be included in the rental rate with no caps on energy usage.
NorthView amenities include a 43,800-square-foot community recreation center, a 618-space dedicated parking garage, a rooftop sky deck, fitness center, game room, resort style pool, and flat-screen televisions in each apartment.
NorthView will be built among two faith centers for community gatherings and student resources. One is currently dedicated to Hillel, the Jewish student organization. The affiliation of the other facility has not yet been decided.
According to an official UCF announcement, students who apply by the Feb. 1 priority deadline will be invited to attend an exclusive room sign-up event where they will be able to select the unit in which they will live. Rents start at $3,686 for a single bedroom in a four-bedroom / four-bathroom unit.
Image courtesy of UCF’s Official Website
GDC-Developed M-F Project to Deliver Eco-Friendly, Luxury Units to Downtown Orlando17 Dec 2012, 1:18 pm
The 2.6-acre site at North Orange Avenue and Marks Street will no longer stay vacant, as developer GDC Properties has recently broken ground on a $35.9 million, eco-friendly multifamily development.
The six-story, 246-unit luxury rental development has been named NORA; the project also features 10,000 square feet of neighborhood retail including a restaurant, gym and coffee shop.
NORA is anticipated to be a LEED certified project. Eco-friendly property features include a rooftop photovoltaic system that will contribute towards its LEED certification requirements. The unit mix is comprised of one- and two-bedroom apartments that range in size from 691 to over 1,400 square feet. Amenities include a courtyard with a large pool and barbecue grilling areas. There will also be an adjacent 400-space parking garage with access to each of the building’s six floors, as well as bicycle storage.
“Demand for rental apartments in Downtown Orlando is surging as young professionals look to reduce their commutes and live in a walkable, 24-hour urban environment,” says Adam Ginsburg, co-chairman of GDC Properties. “We look forward to providing hip and environmentally conscious homes to prospective renters.”
The project, set for completion in spring 2014, is designed by Baker Barrios Architects, while PCL Construction Services Inc. is the project’s general contractor. NORA is expected to begin leasing in late 2013.
New York-based developer GDC Properties bought the long-time vacant site at North Orange Avenue and Marks Street in 2005 for $2.7 million. On July 11, 2011, the NORA project master plan received approval from the Orlando City Council. This is not the sole GDC Properties-developed project underway within city limits, as the company is also working on the ALOFT Orlando Downtown—an adaptive reuse and redevelopment of the former OUC Administration Building to a proposed Starwood Aloft hotel.
Retail Phase of 14.5-Acre Mixed-Use Development Underway, Multifamily and Office to Follow26 Nov 2012, 8:18 pm
DeBartolo Development, LLC and Forge Capital Partners, LLC have recently broken ground on The Fresh Market at Mills Park—the first phase of a 14.5-acre mixed-use development that will rise at the intersection of Mills Avenue and Virginia Drive in Orlando.
The approximately 24,000 square-foot specialty neighborhood grocer Fresh Market will anchor The Market at Mills Park, the retail portion of the project, set for completion in 2013. The ceremonial groundbreaking, held on November 12, was attended by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, Commissioners Robert F. Stuart (District 3), Patty Sheehan (District 4) and Samuel B. Ings (District 6).
“The groundbreaking of the urban infill development, Mills Park, is exciting because it is evidence that Orlando is moving out of the recession and into prosperity,” said Mayor Buddy Dyer. “I am thrilled to see retailers such as The Fresh Market believing in Orlando.”
The retail project features a park element consisting of small freestanding retail buildings offering treats like ice cream and adult and kid-friendly beverages as well as a bike repair shop surrounded by subtle landscape and water features for those traveling on the Orlando Urban Train.
Following the retail component, Mills Park will add multifamily residences as well as office space. The urban mixed-use development will be located minutes away from Florida Hospital’s main campus which serves 1.5 million patients annually and employs 1,000 physicians and up to 5,000 associated staff members. Centrally located midway between Downtown Orlando and Winter Park, the mixed-use development will be within walking distance of major cultural centers including The Orlando Museum of Art, The Orlando Science Center, Orlando Shakespeare Theater, The Mennello Museum of Folk Art and the Orlando Repertory Theater.
Developers DeBartolo and Forge Capital Partners have acquired the 14.5-acre site of the city-approved development in April 2011 through their joint venture investment fund, Community Reinvestment Partners II, LP. The two companies have retained Pelloni Development Corporation—the original developer of the project—to develop the medical and professional office component.
Image via http://www.millsparkorlando.com/