Monday, July 27, 2009

Interstate Hotels & Resorts Successfully Appeals NYSE Ruling

ARLINGTON, Va., July 27, 2009—Interstate Hotels & Resorts (OTC Bulletin Board: IHRI), a leading hotel real estate investor and the nation’s largest independent hotel management company, today announced that the company has successfully appealed a NYSE ruling in March under which Interstate’s stock was suspended from trading for failing to meet the minimum $15 million market capitalization requirement.

The NYSE has now determined that Interstate’s stock will resume trading on Wednesday, July 29 under its previous symbol IHR.

Interstate’s stock has been trading on the OTC market since March 12, during which time the company’s share price increased 185 percent and the company successfully extended its senior credit facility maturity.

The market capitalization is now well in excess of the $15 million minimum capitalization required for NYSE listing.

“We appreciate the NYSE’s consideration of the unprecedented market conditions and our rapid return to compliance with the minimum market cap requirement,” said Thomas F. Hewitt, Interstate’s chairman and chief executive officer. “We look forward to continuing our long-standing relationship with the NYSE.”

Julie Tullbane, Daly Gray Public Relations, T 703-435-6293F 703-435-6297

Carrie McIntyre, SVP, Treasurer, (703) 387-3320

Industrial Market Softens as Average Vacancy Climbs to 10.7%

SANTA ANA, CA, July 27, 2009--Bob Bach, (top right photo) senior vice president and chief economist at Grubb & Ellis Co., reports the industrial market is softening at a record pace. Here are the highlights of his report:

The pace of softening intensified in the second quarter as the vacancy rate soared by 120 basis points to end the quarter at 10.7 percent. This was by far the largest one-quarter gain in the 22-year history of Grubb & Ellis’ survey, easily breaking the record of 70 basis points set in the prior quarter.

Vacancy was lowest in Los Angeles County at 3.1 percent, although the availability rate of 8.3 percent indicates that the vacancy rate will rise as leases expire. Vacancy was highest at 19.7 percent in Kalamazoo, Mich., a region that is working hard to shore up its industrial base.

Net absorption was mired deep in the red for a second consecutive quarter, registering negative 43 million square feet on top of the 40 million square feet vacated in the first quarter.

The silver lining was that only 13 million square feet was completed, the lowest quarterly total in nearly five years.

Users in Northern and Central New Jersey gave back nearly 9 million square feet of space, far ahead of second-place Atlanta where just shy of 6 million square feet was returned. Twelve of the 58 markets tracked by Grubb & Ellis did manage to stay in the black, led by Denver with 813,000 square feet of positive absorption.

Space under construction plunged to 27 million square feet at the end of the second quarter, its lowest level since at least the early 1990s. The Greater Philadelphia region, encompassing Central and Eastern Pennsylvania, led all markets with 4.1 million square feet yet to be completed, followed by second-place Houston with 2.6 million square feet.

Southern California’s Inland Empire, a longtime construction leader where nearly 22 million square feet was delivered in 2007, ended the second quarter with just 1.6 million square feet in the pipeline.

The average asking rental rate for all types of industrial space offered on the market at the end of the quarter was $5.54 per square foot per year triple net, a decline of 2.7 percent from the year-ago quarter.
The average effective rental rate declined by 22 percent over the past four quarters, driven lower by generous periods of free rent and other concessions to tenants.


The industrial market is not living up to its reputation for relatively moderate swings in leasing market cycles. The 120 basis-point increase in the vacancy rate during the second quarter was the fastest pace of softening among the four core property types.

The drivers of demand for industrial space – retail sales, logistics, global trade and the construction industry – all have taken big hits in the current recession.

The sharp increase in the second quarter vacancy rate to 10.7 percent raises the possibility that the market may come close to the previous record of 13.7 percent posted in the first quarter of 1992.

Ironically, given the rapid pace of deterioration, the industrial market could be the first to turn around.

China’s efforts to rescue its economy – a $586 billion stimulus package (larger as a share of GDP than the U.S. stimulus) and a robust expansion of credit by the state-controlled banking system – appear to be putting the country on track to achieve its GDP growth target of 8 percent this year.

This is a hopeful sign for U.S. exports and, by extension, demand for light assembly and warehouse/distribution space.

Contact: Janice McDill, Direct: 312.698.6707• Fax: 312.698.5941

Palmer Electric wins contract to upgrade Hunter's Creek Middle School in metro Orlando

WINTER PARK, Fla.,— The special projects division of Palmer Electric Company has secured a $600,000 contract for upgrades to Hunter's Creek Middle School located in south Orange County, Fla.

Under its contract with general contractor Williams Company, Palmer is providing the electrical work for a new heating ventilating and air conditioning system, and is installing cabling to network the existing nine-building campus.

According to Palmer Electric’s Manager of Special Projects Ron Howard, (top right photo) the fast track project is scheduled for completion in 40 days.

Orange County Public Schools is the owner. The general contractor is the Williams Company of Orlando, Fla. SGM Engineering Inc. of Orlando Fla., is providing electrical engineering.

Built in 1994, Hunter's Creek Middle School is located on 25-acres in south Orange County, Fla. The nine-building campus totals 158,711-square-foot of space for administration, cafeteria/auditorium, information/media center and classrooms.
Palmer Electric Company is a provider of electrical contracting for commercial, institutional and residential customers. Additionally, the Company provides service and repairs to utilities, businesses and consumers.

Founded in 1951, the Company is headquartered in Winter Park, Fla., and has residential division offices in Lakeland and Jacksonville, Fla. The Company employs a staff of 350.
For additional information, visit

Contact: Elaine Ingra, PR WORKS!, PH: 407 384-1344,,

A.D. Owens Construction breaks ground on new building in Davenport, FL

ORLANDO, FL, July 27, 2009 — Orlando, Fla.-based A.D. Owens Construction Corp. has secured a nearly $500,000 contract from Crane Rental Corp. for pre-construction, general contracting and interior build out services for a new office building.

According to A.D. Owens Construction President Andy Owens, ground was broken this week on the two-story, 5,000-square-foot building on the site of Crane Rental’s Waverly Barn Road location in Davenport, Fla.

The building shell is concrete block on the first level, hollow core and slab construction on the second level with a stucco fa├žade. Construction is scheduled for completion in November of this year.

Farmer & Company of Orlando, Fla. is the architect of record for this project. Engineering is provided by two Orlando, Fla.-based firms - Gast Engineering Inc. for mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineering and Advanced Structural Engineering Inc. for structural engineering.
A.D. Owens Construction Corp.

A.D. Owens Construction Corp. was founded by construction industry executive Andrew Owens in 2007.

Headquartered in Orlando, Fla., the Company provides construction management, general contracting and design build services for new construction, renovations and tenant interiors for commercial projects throughout Central Florida.

Please visit for additional information.

Since, 1960, Orlando-based Crane Rental has provided services to contractors for heavy civil construction, commercial, chemical, and industrial projects throughout Florida, the southeast, New England, western states and the Caribbean. Headquartered in Orlando, Fla., the Company has an office in Davenport, Fla.

Contact: Elaine Ingra, PR WORKS!, PH: 407 384-1344,,

Concordia Condominiums at Cape Coral, FL reports 29 Sales over past 30 Days

CAPE CORAL, Fla. - Concordia, (top left photo) a master-planned community located at the intersection of Del Prado Blvd. and Kismet Parkway in Cape Coral, reports it sold 29 brand new condominiums priced from the $70s over the past 30 days in a “Bank Blow-out” sale.

Andy Garrett, general manager at Concordia, said the brand new condominiums are being sold at one-third the original prices through Concordia’s business platform – the homebuyer purchases directly from the bank. “Every homebuyer is guaranteed the low prices,” said Garrett.

Only 50 one, two and three-bedroom condominiums remain for sale in the first phase of the community. Development of a second phase with 170 condominiums is substantially complete and is planned to be released for sale sometime in August with planned price increases.

New condominiums at Concordia range in size from 1,182 square feet of living space to 1,642 square feet, Garrett said.

Concordia will ultimately include 340 tropically landscaped condominiums with garages, surrounding a five acre lake, with a Mediterranean-styled community clubhouse that features a tropical club room furnished for group and individual gatherings, state-of-the-art fitness center, and a large swimming pool and spa overlooking the lake.

For more information, contact:
Andy Garrett, General Manager, Concordia Cape Coral, 239-214-2323

Steve Sirang, Chief Executive Officer, Concord Wilshire Companies 310-471-2400

Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications 407-644-4142,

CREC Retained by Bayview Financial to Sell/Lease Merrick View Office Building in Coral Gables, FL

CORAL GABLES, FLORIDA -- Continental Real Estate Companies (“CREC”), has been retained by Bayview Financial as exclusive leasing and sales agent for Merrick View, (bottom left photo) a 90,383 square foot, Class “A” office/condo project in upscale Coral Gables.

The property is immediately adjacent to the prestigious Village of Merrick Park, a world class, outdoor mall, anchored by Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, and a variety of restaurants, cafes, personal services and upscale boutiques.

CREC SVP and shareholder Steven Hurwitz (top right photo) will handle the leasing and sales of the property, along with CREC VP, Doug Okun.

“Merrick View is a unique opportunity to lease or own newly constructed, Class “A” office space in a truly upscale property.

"Our tenants and owners don’t need to worry about property stability given Bayview Financial’s involvement. The property is already 50% leased and/or sold”, stated Hurwitz.

With offices throughout the state of Florida, CREC specializes in the areas of asset & property management, leasing, tenant representation, construction management/development dispositions and finance, and creative workout solutions.

Founded in 1989 by Chairman Warren P. Weiser and President Carol Brooks, CREC today is one of Florida’s largest commercial firms, managing a portfolio of more than 80 office and retail properties totaling 10 million square feet.

For more information visit

Contact: Lisa Rosario, (305) 854-7342, Fax: (305) 858-6239

Phuket to welcome first Westin resort in Thailand in early 2010

SINGAPORE, July 27, 2009 – Westin Hotels & Resorts continues its expansion momentum in Asia-Pacific, announcing that Westin will introduce its first resort in Thailand in early 2010.

Owned by Phuket Garden Cliff Co Ltd, the Westin Siray Bay Resort, Phuket will be the newest international 5-star property to open in Phuket and will offer travelers a sensory-rich environment to renew and recharge.

We are excited to introduce the first Westin resort in Thailand! The soon to open Westin Siray Bay Resort will also further strengthen the position of Starwood as one of the largest international upscale hotel chains in the Thailand and Indochina region (Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos),” commented Miguel Ko, (bottom right photo) Chariman & President of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Asia Pacific.

“We are looking forward to offering travelers to Phuket a retreat from the rigors of travel, with our signature Westin services, products and amenities that will allow them to relax, rejuvenate and recharge during their stay,” added Ko.

The Westin Siray Bay, Phuket will be located on Siray Island, in a private cove overlooking Siray Bay and will offer private beach access.

Contact: Hwee-Peng Yeo, Tel : +65 6335 4837; Cell : +65 9768 6087; +65 9248 0424
Fax : +65 6335 4820;