Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Mills Group Sells the Waikiki Galleria Project in Waikiki

  

HONOLULU, HAWAII--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Mills Group announced that it has completed the sale of the Waikiki Galleria (top left photo) to Sanno USA, Inc.

The iconic project located in the heart of Waikiki along Kalakaua and Royal Hawaiian Avenues is home to the DFS Galleria, and includes a 15 story multi-tenant office tower, clad with distinctive exterior arches that are as widely recognized in Tokyo as they are in Hawaii.

"The project has been an outstanding investment for our group and represents some of the best, institutional quality real estate in Hawaii," said Bill Mills, chairman of The Mills Group. “Despite all of the ups and downs of the commercial real estate market and global economic turmoil, the Waikiki Galleria project has always performed well.”

While there has been a dearth of larger transactions this year, the sale of the Waikiki Galleria is surely going to remind investors that Hawaii will always play a role in national trends. “It really bodes well for the entire state that deals of this magnitude can get done here,” added Mills.

The Waikiki Galleria had not been listed for sale, but an inquiry from the buyer resulted in meaningful discussions and ultimately the sale.

The buyer is represented by Steve Sombrero of NAI Chaney Brooks. Chaney Brooks has assumed responsibility for management and leasing of the project. Sombrero feels that the project represents an excellent strategic long-term investment.

"People immediately recognize the project whether standing on Kalakaua Avenue or seeing it in a photograph in Tokyo. Our client was very fortunate to have this rare opportunity to acquire such a unique, high quality asset, and they plan to hold it as a long-term investment,” said Sombrero.

The Waikiki Galleria Project was originally developed by Bank of Hawaii and the building served as the long-time location of the Waikiki branch of the bank and also housed a Woolworth store on the first and second floor. In 1988 the project was sold by the Bank to Nippon Shinpan of Japan. Nippon Shinpan later sold the project in October 2001 to an investor group comprised of The Mills Group, The Shidler Group and Angelo Gordon.

The Mills Group, along with a consortium of private investors from Japan, bought out the other investors in 2003 and operated the project since that time.

While the sale represents the last asset in Waikiki for The Mills Group, it does not indicate a lack of interest for future projects in Waikiki.

“We have been long-term believers in the Hawaii economy and Waikiki specifically,” commented Mills. “We continue to look for strategic investments in both real estate and operating companies and would love to have another project in Waikiki.”

The Mills Group is based in Honolulu and has a 25 year history of real estate and other diversified investments located around the Pacific Rim.

Other notable current real estate projects of The Mills Group include The Shops at Wailea (top right photo), a luxury retail shopping center in Wailea, the master planned community of Maui Lani (middle right photo), the Lanikeha project in Kaanapali, Maui and two shopping centers on Guam, Tumon Sands Plaza and Guam Premier Outlets.
  

Contacts
The Mills Group
Mark Johnson – Partner, 808-275-5755 or
 808-554-6995

Big Lots Buys Building Located at Indian River Mall in Vero Beach, FL



Stuart, FL, Dec. 31, 2011 --(PR.com)-- Big Lots, North America’s largest broadline closeout retailer, recently purchased the 32,999-square-foot building formerly occupied by home goods retailer Linens ‘N Things at the Indian River Mall (top left photo) in Vero Beach for $2.4 million.

Big Lots will move its existing store, located just to the east on SR 60, into the space, which is newer, larger, and ideally located at the Regional Mall—a big improvement for the chain and its customers.

Boyd Bradfield (lower right photo) President of NAI Southcoast, represented the Seller, an investor group from Miami. The property had received a great deal of interest from both developers and retailers and had been under contract twice prior to Big Lots’ purchase of the property.

For more information about NAI Southcoast, please visit http://www.naisouthcoast.com/.

NAI Global is the world's leading managed network of 5,000 professionals, 325 offices in 55 countries.. To learn more, visit http://www.naiglobal.com/.

Contact
NAI Southcoast
Amy Morris
772-286-6292
Contact

Top PGA Golf Pro John Cook joins forces with PlayGolfPlanet.com in Orlando, FL

  

KISSIMMEE, FL  --- PlayGolfPlanet.com, the start up company that provides golfers with a social way to book tee times and deals with their favorite courses, has landed its second PGA golf pro endorsement from John Cook (top right photo).

Cameron Cress (lower left photo), founder and chief executive officer of PlayGolfPlanet.com, said Cook is going to place the PlayGolfPlanet.com logo to his golf bag for the duration of the PGA tour.

Cress said he is delighted with the endorsement and especially the exposure.

“John Cook is a friend and supporter and we are very excited about his endorsement and support,” Cress said.

Cook is one of the top money winners on the senior golf circuit and is the winner of some 11 PGA tournaments.

PlayGolfPlanet.com is a client company of the University of Central Florida Business Incubation Program located in Kissimmee at 111 E. Monument Avenue.

For more information, contact

Cameron Cress, Founder/CEO PlayGolfPlanet, 407-615-7106,  ccress@playgolfplaneat.com
Rafael Caamano, Site Manager Kissimmee UCF Business Incubation Program, 407-343-4300,  Rafael.Caamano@ucf.edu  
Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications, 407-644-4142 or LvershelCo@aol.com  

Friday, December 30, 2011

New Promotions at Marcus & Millichap’s Dallas, TX Office



 Jason Vitorino Earns First Vice President Investments Post

 DALLAS, TX – The board of directors of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has promoted Jason S. Vitorino (top right photo) to first vice president investments.

 This achievement is one of the highest levels of recognition the firm awards to its investment specialists. It represents excellence in the development and servicing of long-term client relationships, according to Timothy A. Speck, first vice president and regional manager of the firm’s Dallas office.

Prior to his promotion, Vitorino was a vice president investments. He began his career with Marcus & Millichap in March 2002. His specialty is retail property investments.

Vitorino has received eight sales recognition awards from Marcus & Millichap. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with an emphasis in finance from the University of Maine.



Scott A. Ryan Moves Up to Associate Vice President Investments

DALLAS, TX – The board of directors of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has promoted Scott A. Ryan (middle right photo) to associate vice president investments.

This achievement is one of the highest levels of recognition the firm awards to its investment specialists. It represents excellence in the development and servicing of long-term client relationships, according to Timothy A. Speck, first vice president and regional manager of the firm’s Dallas office.

Ryan specializes in office and industrial investment sales. Prior to his promotion, he was a senior associate. He has received two sales recognition awards from Marcus & Millichap.

Ryan began his career with Marcus & Millichap in March 2002. He holds a degree in finance with a concentration in real estate from Texas Christian University.

Tommy M. Lovell  is New Associate Vice President Investments

DALLAS, TX – The board of directors of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has promoted Tommy M. Lovell (lower left photo), III to associate vice president investments.

 This achievement is one of the highest levels of recognition the firm awards to its investment specialists. It represents excellence in the development and servicing of long-term client relationships, according to Timothy A. Speck, first vice president and regional manager of the firm’s Dallas office.

Lovell began his career with Marcus & Millichap in March 2003. Prior to his promotion, he was a senior associate. His specialty is multifamily property investments and he has been involved with more than $580 million in transactions throughout Texas.

Lovell has received two sales recognition awards from Marcus & Millichap. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in economics from Texas Tech University.

Contact: Stacey Corso, Public Relations Manager, (925) 953-1716

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Marcus & Millichap facilitates sale of Americas Best Value Inn in Shelbyville, IN for $850,000



SHELBYVILLE, IND., Dec/. 29, 2011 – Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has announced the sale of Americas Best Value Inn (top left photo), a 50-room hotel located in Shelbyville, Indiana, according to Bryn D. Merrey, vice president and regional manager of the firm’s Tampa office.

The asset commanded a sales price of $850,000.

Jonathan S. Ruprai (middle right photo), a hospitality specialist in Marcus & Millichap’s Tampa office and Josh Caruana (lower left photo) Indiana broker in the firm’s Indianapolis office had the exclusive listing to market the property on behalf of the Illinois-based seller, a financial institution and the buyer, a limited liability company also from Illinois. 

This sale marks the ninth bank-owned hotel that Mr. Ruprai has exclusively listed and sold this year.

Americas Best Value Inn is a two-story, 50-room interior corridor limited service hotel.  The property was built in 1997 and is located at 68 East Rampart Road directly off major arterial, Interstate 74. 

Press Contact:  Bryn D. Merrey, Vice President/Regional Manager, Tampa, (813) 387-4700

2012 Las Vegas Real Estate Market Looks Strong, According to Prudential Americana Group CEO



Las Vegas, NV, Dec,  29, 2011 --(PR.com)-- 2012 Las Vegas Real Estate Forecast

Las Vegas real estate expert Mark Stark (top right photo) expects a stable environment in 2012, building on the stabilization the market experienced in 2011. National elections, a hotly debated assembly bill and a stagnant economy will all have an effect but not significantly deter the market’s upward swing.

“I see much of the same in 2012, which is a really good thing,” said Stark, CEO of Prudential’s largest franchises in both Arizona and Nevada. “There could be a slight price influx, but nothing significant. I really feel it will be a year of opportunities on both the client and the business side, because there are less homes available and more of a need to make every property stand out among its competitors.

 Stark said increased competition among real estate brokerages is a good thing for his company, which acquired several firms in 2011 including Century 21 MoneyWorld in Las Vegas and the entire Prudential Arizona Properties franchise. “We have a model that has been successful and will be fine –tuning it in 2012.”

Real estate executives that can provide advanced technological capabilities will have an advantage in 2012, said Stark. “Now more than ever, we need to offer our clients sales and marketing strategies that are unique and effective,” said Stark.

“By the numbers, we can see the stabilization in Southern Nevada,” he said.

  In 2010, the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors reported 88,746 real estate transactions (sides) closed, or approximately 44,373 homes.

Prudential Americana Group had a 10 percent market share of those closings with 8,027 sides or approximately 4,013 homes. In 2011, there have been 89,266 sides closed YTD, or approximately 44,633 homes.

 Prudential increased its market share to 11.4 percent YTD this year with 8,620 sides or 4,310 homes.

Mark Stark is CEO of Americana Holdings, LLC, which includes Prudential Arizona Properties and Prudential Americana Group REALTORS, one of Nevada’s oldest and largest real estate companies.

 For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

Prudential Americana Group
Sarah Thornton
702-796-7777
Contact

The Boulder Group Arranges Sale of a Single Tenant Net Leased Walgreens Property in Tinley Park, IL (Chicago MSA)



Northbrook, IL, Dec. 29, 2011 --(PR.com)-- The Boulder Group, a net leased investment brokerage firm, has completed the sale of a single tenant net leased Walgreens property (top left photo) located at 16675 S Oak Park Avenue in Tinley Park, IL for $3,358,000.

Walgreens is the sole occupant of the 13,905 square foot retail building that was developed in 1999. The property is located on a 1.79 acre parcel at the southwest corner of 167th Street and Oak Park Avenue in Tinley Park, IL in the southern suburbs of the Chicago MSA.

Tinley Park has over 50,000 residents making it the 14th largest city in metropolitan Chicago. The property featured an attractive high yield for a net leased Walgreens asset combined with strong existing store sales and a prime signalized intersection on a hard corner.

Randy Blankstein (lower left photo) and Jimmy Goodman (lower right photo) of The Boulder Group represented the seller, a Chicago trust, in the transaction. The buyer was a California based 1031 exchange investor.

Walgreens has eight years of lease term remaining on an original 20 year double net lease. Walgreens is a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange (WAG), with a market capitalization of $39.9 Billion. Walgreens is an investment grade rated company with a Standard & Poor’s rating of A that has over 7,700 stores nationwide.

“The market for vintage net leased Walgreens in major metros remains active as investors are attracted to investment grade tenanted properties in core markets,” said Blankstein, President of The Boulder Group.

Jimmy Goodman, Partner of The Boulder Group, added, “Investors are seeking to diversify their single tenant portfolios with older investment grade leased assets to achieve higher yields than newly constructed properties.”

About The Boulder Group

The Boulder Group is a boutique investment real estate service firm specializing in net lease properties. The firm provides a full range of brokerage, advisory, and financing services nationwide to a substantial and diversified client base, which includes high net worth individuals, developers, REITs, partnerships and institutional investment funds.
  
 Founded in 1997, the firm has arranged the acquisition and disposition of more than $1.2 billion of net lease real estate transactions through several real estate cycles. The Boulder Group is headquartered in suburban Chicago. The company’s website address is www.bouldergroup.com


Contact:
The Boulder Group
Randy Blankstein
847-562-8500
Contact

Disney Family Fund Proposes 70-Unit Condo Project For South Beach, FL


MIAMI, FL -- An investment fund founded by the late Roy E. Disney (top right photo) - former executive of The Walt Disney Co. and nephew of entertainment titan Walt Disney (middle left photo) - plans to construct a five-story condo project with 70 units in the South Beach neighborhood of Miami Beach, according to a new report from CondoVultures.com.

The developer - Palau Sunset Harbor LLC with members of Roy E. Disney's Shamrock Holdings of Southern California - is scheduled to formally unveil its plans for the new project - Palau At Sunset Harbour - on Jan. 24, 2012 at a Miami Beach Planning Board meeting, according to a public notice published in the Miami Herald.

 Plans call for 43 units with 500 square feet to 999 square feet, a dozen units with 1,000 square feet to 1,200 square feet, and 15 units with more than 1,200 square feet, according to plans filed with the Miami Beach Planning Department. 

The proposed 109,300-square-foot project - with 13,100 square feet of ground floor commercial space - is slated to be developed on three lots with a combined 54,700-square-foot property at 1201 20th St. - site of the longtime Mark's Quality Cleaners - just west of Alton Road and east of Publix Super Market.

The development site was acquired in a pair of transactions for a combined $8.2 million - an average of $150 per square foot - that were recorded in November 2011, according to Miami-Dade County records.

Plans for a condo project in the Sunset Harbour area of South Beach were first reported on Nov. 29, 2011 by the Miami Herald.

The Condo Vultures® Market Intelligence Report™ profiled the project on Dec. 1, 2011.

Despite the existence of about 4,700 coastal units that remain unsold from the last real estate boom as of Sept. 30, 2011, developers are proposing to construct a combined 20 towers with more than 4,200 units east of Interstate 95 in the tricounty region of Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties, according to a recent CondoVultures.com report.

 Condo Vultures® LLC is a real estate consultancy and marketing company based at 1005 Kane Concourse, Suite 205, Bal Harbour, Florida, 33154. You can reach Condo Vultures® LLC at 800-750-0517.

Taubman Completes Purchase of Davis Street Assets




BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MI /PRNewswire/ -- Taubman Centers, Inc. (NYSE: TCO) announced the completion of the purchase of The Mall at Green Hills (Nashville, Tenn.), The Gardens on El Paseo (middle right photo) and El Paseo Village (middle left photo) (Palm Desert, Calif.) from Davis Street Properties of Evanston, Illinois. 

"These transactions crown a year of progress on our external growth initiatives," said Robert S. Taubman (lower right photo), chairman, president and chief executive officer.  "With the addition of these assets, we've enhanced both the quality of our portfolio and its anticipated growth rate."

 The consideration for the properties totals $560 million, excluding transaction costs.  The consideration consists of the assumption of $206 million of debt, $281 million in installment notes and the balance in 1.3 million partnership units in The Taubman Realty Group Limited Partnership.

 The installment notes are fully cash collateralized with funds drawn from the company's lines of credit. The notes bear interest at 3.125 percent, and will be repaid with the cash collateral on February 20, 2012. 

 The number of partnership units issued was determined based on a value of $55 per unit. The partnership units will become eligible to be converted into Taubman Centers' common shares after one year.

 Prior to that date, holders will have the ability to put the units back to the company at the lesser of the current market price of Taubman Centers' common shares or $55 per share. 

About The Mall at Green Hills

The Mall at Green Hills, originally constructed in 1955, is the dominant fashion shopping destination in Nashville.  It has been expanded and renovated many times over the years, including the most recent expansion which added a 149,000 square foot Nordstrom that opened September 16, 2011.

The property has 887,000 square feet of total GLA and 375,000 mall tenant GLA and also is anchored by Dillard's and Macy's.  The center features many unique-to-the-market tenants including Nordstrom, its only store in Nashville.

About The Gardens on El Paseo and El Paseo Village

Composed of two adjacent properties across the street from each other, these assets operate as an open-air specialty center.  They anchor El Paseo Avenue, which dominates high-end retail for the entire Coachella Valley, a growing affluent market with significant tourism. 

The Gardens on El Paseo was built in 1998 and El Paseo Village was completed in 2010.  Together, they offer 236,000 square feet of total GLA including a Saks Fifth Avenue and 186,000 square feet of mall tenant GLA occupied by fashion-oriented shops.

   For more information about Taubman, visit http://www.taubman.com/.
  
Contacts:
Karen Mac Donald, Taubman, Director, Communications, +1-248-258-7469, kmacdonald@taubman.com;
Robert Perlmutter, Davis Street Land Company, +1-847-425-4021, rperlmutter@dslandco.com;
Barbara Baker, Taubman, Vice President, Investor Relations, +1-248-258-7367, bbaker@taubman.com

Nordstrom Rack to Open at Edinger Plaza in Huntington Beach, CA

                                               

HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA (Dec. 29, 2011) — Seattle-based Nordstrom, Inc., (NYSE: JWN) announced today plans to open a new Nordstrom Rack in Orange County. The approximately 34,000-square-foot store is scheduled to open during fall 2012 at Edinger Plaza (middle right photo) in Huntington Beach, Calif.

 Nordstrom Rack is the off-price retail division of Nordstrom, Inc., carrying on-trend merchandise from Nordstrom stores and Nordstrom.com at 50 to 60 percent off original Nordstrom prices.

Nordstrom Rack also offers a wide selection of apparel, accessories and shoes from many of the brands carried in Nordstrom stores. These items are purchased specially for Nordstrom Rack, with most at savings of 30 to 70 percent off.

 Edinger Plaza is conveniently located off I-405 in Huntington Beach, Calif. The new Nordstrom Rack will join anchor tenants Dick’s Sporting Goods, Michaels and PetSmart. The center is owned and managed by Watt Companies with Wilson Commercial Real Estate handling leasing.

“We are excited to have Nordstrom Rack as a tenant at Edinger Plaza,” said Nadine Watt (lower left photo), president of Watt Companies. “Nordstrom Rack is a premier retailer who will be a great complement to our existing tenants.”

 When it opens, the Edinger Plaza store will be the fifth Nordstrom Rack in Orange County. Nordstrom also operates six full-line stores in the area. “We’ve been doing business in Orange County since 1978 and hope our new store at Edinger Plaza will help us better serve the many customers we are fortunate to have in the area,” said Geevy Thomas, president of Nordstrom Rack.

 Contact:
David Ebeling
Ebeling Communications
(p) 949.861.8351
(c) 949.278.7851

Colliers International Completes $1.295 Million Property Sale in Hollywood, CA



Hollywood, CA– Colliers International, the third largest global real estate services organization, has completed the sale of a 4,026-square-feet property located at 1542 Cassil Place (top left photo) Hollywood, Calif. The total transaction is valued at $1.295 million. 

 Kathleen A. Silver (middle right photo), CCIM, Senior Vice President, and Kay Thorpe (lower left photo), Associate, both based in Colliers International’s West Los Angeles office represented the Seller, Cassil Management LLC, along with Steve Tronson and John Tronson of Avison Young.

The Buyer, 1542 Cassil LLC, a full-service post production rental equipment company, was represented by Lori King of Avison Young.

 The property was originally built in 1964 but was completely rebuilt in 2001. It is a two-story, class A free standing commercial building in heart of Hollywood boasting highly improved features with modern architectural design.

 “With very little product available of its kind, this prime Hollywood creative office, commercial building - with ample parking is a rare and unique find for any owner-user in the market,” said Silver. 

 “We were able to successfully locate an owner-user searching for their own building in the area,” added Thorpe.

  Contact:
Angela S. Hwang
Regional Marketing Coordinator | Greater Los Angeles
Dir +1 213 532 3258 | Mob +1 310 867 4105
Main +1 213 627 1214 | Fax +1 213 327 3258

Colliers International
865 S Figueroa St., Suite 3500 | Los Angeles, CA 90017 | USA

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

First Green Bank Grand Green Opening in Mount Dora, FL to unveil 1.25 percent, 24 month Hybrid Flex CD and 1.9 percent loans for 'Green' Cars



MOUNT DORA, FL.  – When Lake County’s First Green Bank hosts its official grand opening Saturday, Feb 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. bank officials plan to showcase more than its new LEED Platinum certified 12,000 square foot headquarters facility at 18251 U.S. Hwy. 441 in Mount Dora.

Kenneth LaRoe, chairman and chief executive officer of First Green Bank, said First Green Bank is introducing special offers for bank customers, including 1.9 percent APR automobile loans on cars that rate higher than 30 mile per gallon fuel efficiency EPA combined minimum standard and a new 24 month Hybrid Flex CD that generates 1.25 percent average percentage yield (APY). These offers are effective starting Dec. 26.

LaRoe said the new 24 month Hybrid Flex CD is available to customers who open a new checking account.

The “Grand Green Opening Celebration” will include tours of the award winning facility that meets U.S. Green Building Council’s Platinum LEED standards for energy efficiency, environmental quality and durability.

LaRoe said bank employees are planning a host of other surprises at the First Green Bank opening event including an Audubon Society’s Birds of Prey Exhibit, the Lake County Sheriff’s Department Mounted Posse, a live band, balloon artist, face painting for children and promotional giveaways as well as plenty of food and beverages.

For more information about this press release, contact:  

Kenneth E. LaRoe, CEO and Chairman, First GREEN Bank, 352-483-9100, ken@firstgreenbank.com
Paul Rountree, President, First GREEN Bank, 352-483-9100, paul@firstgreenbank.com
Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications 407-644-4142 or 407-461-3780, lvershelco@aol.com  

Marcus & Millichap Facilitates Sale of Winsome Place in Tampa, FL for $460,000



TAMPA, FL,  Dec. 28, 2011 – Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has announced the sale of Winsome Place (top left photo), a 20-unit apartment property located in Tampa, Fla., according to Bryn D. Merrey, vice president and regional manager of the firm’s Tampa office.

The sales price of $460,000 represents $23,000 per unit or $40.00 per square foot.

Michael P. Regan (middle right photo), an associate vice president investments and Francesco P. Carriera (lower left photo), a senior associate both in Marcus & Millichap’s Tampa office had the exclusive listing to market the property on behalf of the seller, a loan servicing company in Georgia.  The listing agents also secured the Florida-based buyer of the property, a private investor.

Winsome Place was built in 1988 and is located at 4299 East Sewaha Street.  This 20-unit garden-style community consists of one building with two-stories, situated on approximately .47 acres of land.

“This property consists of all one-bedroom/one-bathroom units and was approximately 50 percent occupied at the time of sale. An all-cash transaction for $23,000 per unit for a property in this submarket with all one-bedroom units is above most other recent sales that are comparable in size. The sale of this property is a good indication that the multifamily market has begun to stabilize,” comments Carriera.

Press Contact:  Bryn D. Merrey, Vice President/Regional Manager, Tampa
813) 387-4700

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stirling Sotheby's International Realty negotiates sales of two luxury properties in Lake and Osceola Counties, Florida



ORLANDO, FL --- Stirling Sotheby’s International Realty recently negotiated the sales of two luxury properties — one in Lake and the other in Osceola County.

Roger Soderstrom, founder and owner of Stirling Sotheby’s International Realty, said Trusted Real Estate Advisor Chris Wilson (top right photo), a luxury home specialist with Stirling Sotheby’s brokered both deals.

In Lake County, Wilson negotiated the short sale of a 5,195 square foot, five bedroom home on Medici Way in the upscale community of Bella Collina (middle left photo) in Monteverde for $865,000.  

The seller was a doctor in the U.K. and the transaction took months to complete with several obstacles to overcome, including foreign tax issues. 

The buyer is a Michigan real estate broker trading up on a second home in the luxury golf community which boasts a grand 42 million dollar clubhouse.

At the same time, Wilson negotiated the sale of a 3,340 square foot home on Harbor Isle Court in the Bellalago community (lower right photo) in Kissimmee. That home was sold by the Michigan real estate broker to move up into a larger second home on Medici Way in Bella Collina.

The Michigan owner sold the Bellalago property, which boasts a private boat dock and large upstairs bonus room, to a New York buyer for $349,000.  This transaction took only 44 days to sell, Wilson said.

For media information, contact:

 Roger Soderstrom, Founder/Owner Stirling Sotheby’s International Realty 407-581-7890; rsoderstrom@stirlingSIR.com;

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

Kinder, Gentler Online Travel Company Joins UCF Business Incubation in Kissimmee,FL Recently Launched Web Portal



 KISSIMMEE, FL  – Inspire Travel, a kinder, gentler online travel company that provides a platform that can be leveraged to support social causes and community organizations, has joined the University of Central Florida Business Incubator in Kissimmee.

 Rafael Caamano, site manager for the UCF Business Incubation Program in Kissimmee, said Inspire Travel is a startup company with a conscience and a business model that combines the best features of online booking agencies with group discounting and social media while promoting social entrepreneurship.

 Inspire Travel recently had a soft launch of www.InspireTravel.com, its web portal, Caamano said. A more robust version of the dynamic web portal is scheduled for launch next year.

 “Inspire Travel is a next-generation travel company that focuses on a whole package of services from airline flights, hotel and resort accommodations and rental cars,  with plans to add dining and entertainment,” Caamano said.

Bill Haberman, founder and chief executive officer of Inspire Travel said he began working on Inspire Travel’s socially-conscious business model while developing a luxury condominium hotel in Celebration, Florida.

 “Inspire Travel is a natural evolution of online travel that combines discount travel options with a social media driven marketing strategy,” Haberman said.

 “Most importantly, we aim to be practitioners of ‘kinder capitalism’ by leveraging our platform to support the awareness and philanthropic efforts of worthy causes,” he said.

For more information, contact

 William Haberman, Founder, CEO, Inspire Travel, 407-973-7875; William.haberman@me.com

  Rafael Caamano, Site Manager Kissimmee UCF Business Incubation Program, 407-343-4300 Rafael.Caamano@ucf.edu  

 Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications, 407-644-4142 or LvershelCo@aol.com  

Orlando EB5 Investment, LLC raises $16.5 Million to help fund two restaurants atop Los Angeles W Hotel

 
MAITLAND, FL. --- Orlando EB5 Investments, a subsidiary company of Orlando based CommerCenters LLC, helped finance two upscale restaurants at the W. Hotel (top left photo)in West Hollywood, Calif. recently with $16.5 million in investment capital.

Richard A. Asta (lower right photo), president of CommerCenters, LLC and Orlando EB5 Investments, said the private equity group helps international investors obtain permanent U.S. immigration visas by investing $500,000 or more in U.S. projects that will generate or retain at least 10 jobs for U.S. workers.

Asta said financing the W. Hotel project was a joint venture that includes Orlando EB5 Investments and American Dream Fund of Los Angeles.

CommerCenters, LLC is a privately-owned, fully integrated real estate investment and development firm, affiliated with NAI Realvest and NAI Global, one of the largest worldwide commercial real estate brokerage firms. Headquartered in Maitland, Florida, CommerCenters  has clients and joint venture partners in various cities in the United States and around the world.

For more information, contact

Rick Asta, President, CommerCenters, LLC, 407-875-9989 ext 1728 rasta@commercenters.com;

George Livingston, Chairman, NAI Realvest, 407-875-9989,  glivingston@realvest.com.

Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications 407-644-4142 Lvershelco@aol.com.



First Green Bank to Host Official “Green Opening” Celebration at Award-Winning Mount Dora, FL Headquarters Facility on Feb. 4


MOUNT DORA, Fla. --- First Green Bank of Lake County will host the official grand opening of its new 12,000 square foot headquarters facility at 18251 U.S. Hwy. 441 in Mount Dora on Saturday, Feb. 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Dubbed the “Grand Green Opening Celebration,” First Green Bank officials said the event will include tours of the award-winning facility, which ranks as the second privately constructed building in Florida designed and built to exceed the U.S. Green Building Council’s rigid Platinum LEED standards for energy efficiency, environmental quality and durability.

First Green Bank was recently named Florida’s Green Business of the Year for 2011 by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Central Florida chapter.

The building---with a design reminiscent of pioneer architect Frank Lloyd Wright---is constructed from materials that required minimal energy for their manufacture and maintenance. Windows, insulation and even the building siting were chosen to reduce energy needs and provide a safe, secure environment for customers.

There are recharging stations for electric cars, said Kenneth E. LaRoe (lower left photo), chairman and chief executive officer of First Green Bank, and their use is free to all customers at all times.

For more information about this press release, contact:  

Ken LaRoe, Chairman and CEO, First GREEN Bank, 352-483-9100, Ken@firstgreenbank.com

 Paul Rountree, President, First GREEN Bank, 352-483-9100, Paul@firstgreenbank.com

 Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications 407-644-4142 or 407-461-3780 lvershelco@aol.com