Wednesday, April 3, 2013

New Castle Assumes Management of Connecticut’s Westport Inn

Westport Inn, Westport, CT

 SHELTON, CT—Officials of New Castle Hotels and Resorts today announced it has assumed management of the 117-room Westport Inn in Westport, Conn.  The hotel is part of the Ascend Collection of independent hotels.      

                “The Westport Inn hits our sweet spot for high-potential hotels with significant business drivers that require some creative input and repositioning,” said Gerry Chase, president and COO of New Castle. 

  “We have established a record for successfully positioning and operating independent hotels, particularly in this region, which is our base of operation. 

Gerry Chase
“Because we own and operate a diverse portfolio that includes independent and select service hotels in secondary markets, upper upscale branded hotels in major destinations and historic/iconic resorts, our team is able to draw from a vast array of experiences and quickly implement the best strategy for a hotel going forward,” he added.

                “A hotel that’s named for the city it serves should be fully integrated into the business and social communities of the town,” said Robert Pope, vice president, sales and marketing for New Castle. “We have a team of hotel executives who are experts in helping hotels gain their footing in the community, and I’m sure that very soon the city of Westport and Westport Inn will be synonymous.” 

Located off I-95 in the heart of Westport, Conn., the hotel offers 6,000 square feet of meeting space, including the 3,200 square foot Westport ballroom, the largest event space in the city.  

The Westport Inn provides ”country inn” touches such as feather bedding, loaner bicycles and maps and  a collection of Academy Award winning movies, along with contemporary complimentaries like in-room WIFI and a corporate shuttle operating within a five mile radius of the hotel.

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

 Lauralee Dobbins
Daly Gray, Inc.

Berger Commercial Realty Announces Three New Leases For 35,000 SF in Fort Lauderdale, FL

Keith Graves

 FORT LAUDERDALE, FL -- Berger Commercial Realty, a full service commercial real estate firm based in Fort Lauderdale and serving clients around the state, announced two lease transactions from brokers Keith Graves and St. George Guardabassi.

 Property Addresses: 3300 SW 13th Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33315
Landlord: Schaefer Industrial, represented by Keith Graves & St. George Guardabassi  Tenant: ARC Broward Square Footage: 25,704 Type: Industrial

 Property Addresses: 3330 SW 13th Avenue Fort Lauderdale, FL 33315
Landlord: Schaefer Industrial, represented by Keith Graves & St. George Guardabassi  Tenant: CTS Engines  Square Footage: 9,136  Type: Industrial

St. George
Graves also represented Harbor Place in the lease of 994 square feet of office space, located at 1600 S.E. 17th St. in Fort Lauderdale, to Ocean Independence Yachts, LLC.

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

Marielle Sologuren
Pierson Grant Public Relations
(954) 776-1999, ext. 226

Northwestern Mutual and Peretz Chesal Herrman to Leave Miami Center for One Biscayne Tower

One Biscayne Tower, Miami, FL
Miami, FL - One Biscayne Tower, the 700,000 square foot Class A office tower located in the Brickell Financial District has reached 85% occupancy with the completion of two leases totaling 16,266 square feet, for a value of almost $6 million, announced Taylor & Mathis. 

 Northwestern Mutual and Peretz Chesal have signed new leases. The transactions were negotiated on behalf of the owner, by the Taylor & Mathis leasing team of Brian Gale, Andrew Trench and Ryan Holtzman.

Brian Gale
 Northwestern Mutual ( signed an 11.5 year lease for 10,066 square feet, while intellectual property lawyers Peretz Chesal Herrman ( signed a 7-year lease for 6,200 square feet. Both tenants are leaving Miami Center for One Biscayne Tower, in the leases co-brokered by Tim Prunka of Prunka Realty Advisors. 

 “One Biscayne Tower is one of the best values for office space in Downtown Miami.  The location, combined with the incredible views of Biscayne Bay, really appeals to law firms and professional service companies,” said Brian Gale, Taylor & Mathis Principal and Managing Director.

Ryan Holtzman
Taylor & Mathis, the exclusive leasing agent for One Biscayne Tower, is a diversified real estate company specializing in the development, marketing and management of office buildings, suburban office parks, industrial parks and mixed-use projects.

 In Florida the company leases and/or manages a portfolio over 11 million square feet. Founded in 1967, the company has developed properties exceeding $1.9 billion in value and has established itself as one of the most respected regional real estate firms in the United States. 

Andrew Trench
Based in Atlanta, with offices in Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Sunrise, Taylor & Mathis concentrates its business activity in primary growth markets in the southeastern United States. 

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

Taubman Asia Announces Guohua Jean Zhang as Managing Director, China

Guohua Jean Zhang

HONG KONG, April 2, 2013 – Taubman Asia is pleased to announce the appointment of Guohua Jean Zhang as Managing Director, China.  Mr. Zhang is responsible for overseeing Taubman’s business development, operations and strategic partnerships in China.

 Mr. Zhang joined the Taubman team in 2011 when the company officially entered China; and has played an instrumental role in the company’s first two Chinese joint venture projects announced to date, in Xi’an and Zhengzhou.

 Mr. Zhang has over 13 years of rich experience in commercial real estate investment, development and operation management, as well as macro-economic analysis, securities and funds and REIT management, accumulated from his years of study and work in North America and the Asian region. 

Rene Tremblay
RenĂ© Tremblay, President, Taubman Asia, said, “We are delighted to have appointed Guohua to lead our business expansion in the Chinese market. 

“China is our number one growth market globally, and we are dedicated to building a solid team on the ground to drive our core business of acquiring, developing, leasing and managing  a portfolio of high-quality and sustainable retail properties here for long term. 

“Guohua’s local expertise and network, coupled with his extensive experience in real estate and investment, is exactly what we need to drive our expansion strategy in China.”

Guohua Jean Zhang said, “I am honored to be part of the Taubman Asia team, and excited about the opportunity to develop a portfolio of sustainable and profitable investments in China, supporting the company’s long-term investment and growth plans for China, while bringing best-in-class retail destinations to Chinese consumers.”

 The appointment of this senior management position signifies Taubman Asia’s long-term commitment to the Chinese market.   Mr. Zhang is based in Taubman Asia’s China head office in Beijing, currently leading a growing team of over 40 staff across the Beijing and Shanghai offices.
 For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

Karen Mac Donald
Taubman, Director, Communications
+1 248 258 7469

  Pamela So
Weber Shandwick, Hong Kong
+852 2533 9916

$34.5 Million Apartment Complex Trades Hands in the Midwest

Town & Country Apartments, Urbana, IL

 URBANA, IL – Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, the nation’s largest real estate investment services firm, has arranged the sale of Town & Country Apartments, a 662-unit apartment complex with a 52-unit self-storage facility onsite, located in Urbana, Ill. The sales price of $34,500,000 equates to $52,115 per unit.

            Scott Harris, a senior vice president investments in Marcus & Millichap’s Chicago Oak Brook office, represented the seller, Axiom Properties Inc. Harris also represented the buyer, Colorado-based Monarch Investment and Management Group.

Scott D. Harris
            “The Champaign/Urbana market has realized significant overall improvement in occupancy during the past two years and is poised for strong rental growth over the next several years,” says Harris. “Town & Country Apartments is a well-maintained asset with low historical vacancy that is in a good position to take advantage of improving market fundamentals.”

            “The property was placed on the market in mid-January, the buyer was selected in mid-February, and the transaction closed less than 30 days after finalizing the contract,” adds Harris.

The apartment complex is located on 30 acres at 1032 East Kerr Ave. in Urbana, Ill. and was constructed in five phases beginning in 1968 and ending in 2008.  Town & Country Apartments’ unit mix features 412 one-bedroom/one-bath units, 234 two-bedroom/one-bath units and 16 two-bedroom/two-bath units.

Community amenities include four swimming pools, a business center, a fitness center, a basketball court and tennis courts.

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

Ben Johnson,
 Marketing Director
(925) 953-1736

Paragon Real Estate acquires former Wickes Furniture building in Batavia, IL

165 North Randall Road, Batavia, IL
CHICAGO, IL– Paragon Real Estate, one of the nation’s leading commercial real estate developers, has purchased a 42,500-square-foot former Wickes Furniture building at Randall Road and McKee Street in Batavia, Ill.

 The Oak Brook, Ill.-based developer has also executed a lease for the property at 165 N. Randall Road with Art Van Furniture. 

The location is one of several that Warren, Mich.-based Art Van Furniture plans to open in the Chicago area in 2013. The furniture retailer, which operates 36 stores throughout Michigan, plans to take occupancy of the freestanding building this summer.

Tom Williams

 “It’s a great building and location that’s been on our radar for a while,” said Tom Williams, managing partner of Paragon Real Estate. “We were fortunate to work with a tenant such as Art Van Furniture. In the end, we all were able to execute this transaction due to the ease of doing business with Art Van Furniture.”

 The building is shadow anchored by a Target, and a new Chick-fil-A opened adjacent to the property in February. The immediate area also includes a Jewel-Osco, Walmart, The Home Depot, Kohl’s, Trader Joe’s, XSport Fitness and many other restaurants, retailers and banks.

Greg Van
 Paragon put the property under contract in late December 2012, executed a lease and completed the purchase within three months. Paragon worked with Signature Bank to meet the seller’s timing requirements and close in a short time frame. “Signature Bank is a great partner to have. They view long-term relationships as more important than the deal at hand.” Williams said.

 Michael Havdala, senior vice president, and Brenton Schrader, associate, of Chicago-based HSA Commercial Real Estate represented the seller, US Bank.

Stan Bobowski and Chris Bobowski, of Naperville, Ill.-based Bobowski Commercial Real Estate represented the tenant, Art Van Furniture.

 “Both HSA Commercial Real Estate and Bobowski Commercial Real Estate were extremely professional, and they demonstrated why they have a proven track record for performance and integrity.

" We had a high degree of confidence that there were not going to be any surprises during the transaction,” Williams said.

 Greg Van Landingham, managing partner of Paragon Real Estate, said Paragon is aggressively seeking to acquire vacant land and buildings. “We have the capital and expertise to close quickly and deliver results for our clients and partners, whether they are large corporations, start-ups, brokers, lenders or property owners.”

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

Paula Widholm,