Monday, April 25, 2011

Wilson Commercial Real Estate Completes 28,897-SF Lease to BuyBuy Baby in Temecula, CA

TEMECULA, CA, APRIL 25, 2011 – Wilson Commercial Real Estate, one of Southern California’s leading retail brokerage firms, has completed a 28,897-square-foot lease with buybuy BABY at The Commons at Temecula (top left photo) located at 40450 Winchester Road in Temecula, Calif. 

This is the first location for buybuy BABY in Riverside County and amongst the first few that will open in Southern California. 

Scott Burns (lower right photo) of Wilson Commercial Real Estate represented the landlord, Inland Western Retail Real Estate Trust, in the transaction.  The tenant was represented by Scott Manclark of Cypress Retail Group.

The Commons at Temecula is a 25-acre power center located in the heart of the City of Temecula, California. Totaling 293,000 square feet, this high-end power center is occupied by Pacific Sales, , Jo-Ann Fabrics, Office Depot, Party City, Petco and Sports Chalet.

 For more information, please visit
Contact: David Ebeling, Ebeling Communications, (p) 949.861.8351
(c) 949.278.7851,

HFF secures $7.25 million financing for sale/leaseback transaction in Irving, TX


DALLAS, TX – HFF announced today that it has secured $7.25 million in financing for the sale/leaseback of BancTec Corporate Campus (top left photo), a 310,518-square-foot, three-building complex in Irving, Texas.

Working exclusively on behalf of an affiliate of Angelo Gordon & Company, HFF placed the 10-year, fixed-rate loan with Morgan Stanley Mortgage Capital Holdings.

  Loan proceeds were used to acquire the property in a sale/leaseback transaction to BancTec.  The securitized loan will be serviced by HFF.

BancTec Corporate Campus includes three buildings with 79,418 square feet of office space and 231,000 square feet of industrial space that is fully leased to BancTec, a mid-market data processing and service company. 

 The property is located on 50 acres at 2701 East Grauwyler between downtown Dallas and Fort Worth in Irving.

The HFF team representing Angelo Gordon & Company was led by managing director Steve Heldenfels and director Brandon Chavoya (lower right photo).

Angelo, Gordon & Co. is a privately-held registered investment advisor dedicated to alternative investing.  The firm was founded in 1988 and currently manages approximately $23 billion.

Steven C. Heldenfels, HFF Managing Director, (214) 265-0880,
Kristen M. Murphy, HFF Associate Director, Marketing, (713) 852-3500             

Hyundai Capital America Leases Another 30,446 SF at The Michelson in Irvine, CA

 IRVINE, CALIF. – April 25, 2011 – Emmes Asset Management Company, a privately-owned real estate investment company, is pleased to announce the expansion  of Hyundai Capital America into an additional 30,446 square feet of space at The Michelson (top left photo), an iconic 533,000-square-foot high rise office tower located at 3161 Michelson Drive in Irvine, Calif. 

The firm now occupies 96,443 square feet on floors 17, 18, 19 and 20.  Don Yahn of Cushman & Wakefield represented Hyundai Capital America.

Located in the heart of Orange County at the southeast corner of Jamboree Road and the 405 Freeway, The Michelson is a 19-story tower offering panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, San Gabriel Mountains and Orange County skyline, and is approximately 80% leased to prominent tenants including Jacobs Engineering Group Inc., Bryan Cave, Gibson Dunn, Greenberg Traurig and Jones Day. 

Since 1992, The EMMES Group of Companies on behalf of its affiliated entities, capital partners and investors, has acquired and managed more than 35 million square feet of retail, office, industrial and multifamily property types. The company's current portfolio includes encompasses nearly 10 million square feet located in 19 states

. Learn more at

 Contact: David Ebeling, Ebeling Communications, (949) 278-7851

Shopping centers, malls are transforming as “Big Box” retailers seek smaller stores, developers seek new uses, says WeinPlus chief executive

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. --- Retailers eyeing smaller, smarter retail facilities could change the look and feel of some malls and retail centers across Florida, says one Florida real estate strategist.

Rachel Elias Wein (top right photo), AIA, founder and principal of WeinPlus Real Estate Advisory Services in St. Petersburg, said many “big box” retailers are opting for smaller facilities that are more efficient.

“Retailers have begun to focus more on smaller real estate footprints, with larger inventory turnover, more sales per square foot and more sales per individual customer,” Wein said. “A store that can meet its sales objectives in 8,000 square feet or 10,000 square feet instead of 14,000 square feet can be much more profitable,” she said.

Wein said Office Depot, Target, Best Buy, Gap and even Wal-Mart are all considering smaller, smarter retail store footprints.

“Wal-Mart plans to open more than 30 smaller format stores in 2011, focusing on grocery products and a smaller inventory of general merchandise,” Wein said.

“Target’s CityTarget concept aims at smaller stores with more targeted merchandise in urban areas.

Smaller, “Big Box” stores offer strategic advantages, Wein said.

Smaller footprints are more efficient, and that means more stores — and more consumer choices — in a single retail center,” she said.

Lowered operating expenses, which include everything from energy costs and maintenance to the workforce, will help retailers economize.

“We should see several changes as developers and retailers shift strategies to accommodate the recession,” Wein said.

For more information, contact

Rachel Elias Wein, AIA, Founder / Principal, WeinPlus, 727-386-9346,
Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications 407-644-4142,

Grubb & Ellis Opens Office in St. Louis

 SANTA ANA, CA (April 25, 2011) -- Grubb & Ellis Company (NYSE: GBE), a leading real estate services and investment firm, today announced that it has opened an owned office in St. Louis as part of the company’s national strategy to expand its presence in key markets. 

The office will be led by 24-year industry veteran David Morris, SIOR, CCIM, who has joined the company as senior vice president. 

Morris will be responsible for serving real estate clients in the St. Louis area, as well as leading Grubb & Ellis’ business development and recruiting efforts in the market.  He reports to Shawn Mobley (top right photo), president, Brokerage Services.

 “David has a tremendous reputation in the St. Louis market and was our top choice to lead the office in what we consider to be a very important market,” said Mobley.  “I am confident that his knowledge of Grubb & Ellis, combined with his industry expertise, will help us quickly establish a strong presence in St. Louis and enhance the service we provide to multi-market clients that operate in the region.”

 Morris joins from Gundaker Commercial, where he was a senior vice president and leader of the firm’s Brokerage Division.  During Gundaker Commercial’s former affiliation with Grubb & Ellis, Morris served on the Affiliate Leadership Board, a seven-member advisory panel responsible for representing the interests of the company’s affiliates with senior management.

 He began his real estate career in Grubb & Ellis’ Denver office in 1987 and also spent 15 years as a brokerage professional with Colliers Turley Martin Tucker.

Contact: Erin Mays, Phone: 312.698.6735

Faris Lee Investments Completes $12.5 Million Sale of Shoppes at Puente Hills Mall in City of Industry, CA

IRVINE, CA., April 25, 2011 – Faris Lee Investments, the nation’s largest retail investment  advisory firm, has completed the $12.5 million sale of Shoppes at Puente Hills Mall (top left photo) a 20,174-square-foot retail center located at 17501 Colima Rd. in City of Industry.

 Built in 2009 and situated on 2.52 acres, the center is an outparcel to the very successful Puente Hills Mall.

The property is 87 percent occupied and includes Panera Bread, Chipotle, The Vitamin Shoppe, Wing Stop, T-Mobile, Jamba Juice, and others.

 The sale marks a significant sales record by boasting the highest price per square foot (approximately $619.60) obtained for a multi-tenant retail investment property above $5 million in Southern California since 2008 (per CoStar).

Richard Walter (middle right photo), president, and Shaun Riley, senior managing director, with Faris Lee Investments represented the seller, San Francisco-based Krausz Puente LLC.

Andrew Miliotis from Los Angeles-based AIT Realty Corp. represented the buyer, Navus LLC from Los Angeles.

Faris Lee received a total of eight offers on the property, the majority of which were Asian investors living in the local market.  The sale closed at a 6.86 percent cap rate.

“The strong retail location, creditworthiness of the tenants, and pride of ownership construction attracted a heavy amount of Southern California-based investor interest in the Shoppes at Puente Hills Mall offering,” said Riley.

“There is a heavy concentration of very motivated, well-capitalized Asian investors who own commercial property in the immediate area – especially along Colima Road.  Our marketing effort was heavily targeted to these potential investors.”

 For more information, please visit

Contact: Darcie Giacchetto, 949.278.6224, Spaulding Thompson & Associates
For Faris Lee Investments

Le Méridien Chiang Rai Resort Debuts Its Grand Deluxe Rooms And An Exclusive Package in Thailand

 Chiang Rai, Thailand (April 25, 2011) – Le Méridien Chiang Rai Resort, (top photo) the only international five-star resort found in Chiang Rai, is pleased to announce the launch of the highly-anticipated Grand Deluxe rooms

 Specifically designed for the resort’s most discerning travelers, the Grand Deluxe rooms will offer 66 square meters of contemporary luxury.  Guests also have the option of booking the exclusive Grand Deluxe Room Package, which offers two nights’ accommodation in the Grand Deluxe Room as well as complimentary gourmet breakfasts and round-trip airport transfers. 

Chic and stylish with a focus on the arts, an inspiring atmosphere, and innovative cuisine, Le Méridien Chiang Rai Resort promises an enchanting stay for any traveler or adventurer with the desire to discover travel with a new perspective.

Le Méridien Chiang Rai offers 159 spacious and contemporary guestrooms and suites.  Located in the resort’s newest wing, the thirty Grand Deluxe rooms are the focal point of Le Méridien Chiang Rai Resort and combine the best of beauty, comfort, and convenience.

luxurious “Cing Mondes” amenities, exclusively prepared to enhance each guest’s experience.

For reservations and more information, please visit and

 Contact: Hwee Peng Yeo, Tel : 65 9768.6087,

Construction to Begin on Fountains at Mooresville Town Square Apartments in North Carolina

Charlotte, NC – Construction is scheduled to begin next month on Fountains at Mooresville Town Square (top left rendering), a 227-unit, $23 million luxury apartment community developed by Charlotte-based Hawkins-Dixon, Ltd.

The new community, located just north of Charlotte in Mooresville, NC, is the residential component of Mooresville Town Square, a recently-opened mixed-use center featuring a new Lowes Foods, numerous restaurants and businesses, the Bella Lago Spa, and the Goddard School, a five-star preschool.

The walkable town square area features a central greenway with sitting areas and easy access to its many stores and businesses. Located at the intersection of Williamson and Brawley School roads just off I-77, the community is close to major employers, The Shops at Morrison Plantation and Lake Norman itself.

“I don’t think we could find a better location in the Lake Norman area or in northern Mecklenburg County,” said Hawkins-Dixon principal Wyatt Dixon (middle right photo). “My partners and I have been focused on this project for quite some time and we’re happy to see it move forward.” 

This is the third apartment community Dixon has developed in the Lake Norman area; he was involved in the development of two nearby projects during his tenure with Summit Properties and later with Faison and Associates.

Dixon says developing “Class A” residential components within mixed-use communities will be an integral part of the company’s long-term focus. “Well-located lifestyle centers such as Mooresville Town Square offer a good opportunity for us to develop quality apartment communities,” he said. “Residents look for the convenience this type of development brings—the ability to walk to restaurants, bars, entertainment, and even the grocery store next door.”

The architect for the project is The Housing Studio; Design Resource Group is the land planner, engineer and landscape architect. Samet Corporation is the general contractor. Jones Lang LaSalle will handle construction management. Greystar will manage the completed property. 

Contact: Terri Thornton, 404-932-4347 (Cell),  

HEI Hotels & Resorts Wins Top Starwood Awards

 Special Recognition for Volunteer Work Following Flood in Nashville

NORWALK, CT, April 25, 2011—HEI Hotels & Resorts (HEI), the nation’s fastest growing private owner/operator of hotel real estate, today announced that the company received four of the top awards for operating and development excellence from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

 It was the largest number of awards given to any Starwood franchisee at the company’s recent North American Owners Conference.  HEI and its hotels were selected to receive the following awards:

President's Award – for hotel industry leadership and consistently partnering with Starwood in reaching its corporate objectives (HEI Hotels & Resorts)

Social and Cultural Sustainability Award – for demonstrating an individual hotel’s positive impact on a local community, including a high level of associate participation (Sheraton Music City Hotel (middle left photo), owned/managed by HEI Hotels & Resorts)

Conversion - Full Service – for top full-service hotel conversion of the year, including exceptional post-opening results (Le Méridien Philadelphia (lower right photo), owned/managed by HEI Hotels & Resorts)

New Build - Luxury – for best new luxury hotel, including exceptional post-opening results (W Hollywood Hotel & Residences, owned/managed by HEI Hotels & Resorts)

“It is particularly gratifying to be recognized in four diverse categories,” said Gary Mendel, (top right photo) HEI chairman and CEO.

“HEI and its associates are committed to setting and achieving the highest possible standards in all areas of hotel operations and guest service delivery.  These awards recognize that commitment and our collective success in achieving our goals. 

“We consider being named as recipient of four awards to be a singular honor.

 Media Contact: Jerry Daly, media, (703) 435-6293,