Essex House Hotel

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (August 20, 2018)

Anbang Insurance Group is looking to sell its luxury hotel holdings, according to the Wall Street Journal. NPR looks at why hospitals are investing in real estate. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. China’s Anbang Puts a $5.5 Billion Luxury Hotel Portfolio on the Block “China’s Anbang Insurance Group Co. is looking to unload a luxury hotel collection that it acquired for $5.5 billion two years ago, according to people familiar with the matter, as pressure builds on the company to raise cash following its seizure by the government. Anbang had been listening to offers to buy individual properties within its hotel portfolio, which includes high-end properties like the Essex House Hotel overlooking Manhattan’s Central Park; the Four Seasons Hotel in Jackson Hole, Wyo.; and the InterContinental Hotels in Chicago and Miami, The Wall Street Journal reported in February.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  2. Best Buy Is Buying a Health Tech Company That Caters to the Elderly and Analysts Are Gushing “Best Buy Co Inc. shares rose Thursday as analysts cheered the news of its acquisition of San Diego-based GreatCall, a health technology company that focuses on the elderly. The electronics retailer said late Wednesday it is paying $800 million in cash to acquire the company, which provides connected health and emergency response services to more than 900,000 paying subscribers. GreatCall offers mobile products and wearables that connect users to agents who can hook them up with family caregivers or send emergency medical help.” (MarketWatch)
  3. Developer Trammel Crow Builds Immigration Services Center at DFW Airport “Developer Trammell Crow Co. is building a new facility at DFW International Airport for the U.S. immigration services to consolidate operations. The General Services Administration will lease the almost 260,000-square-foot building for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' Texas Service Center. Crow and investment partner Elm Tree Funds are building the project and will rent the building to the government for 20 years. The center will have both office and support space and will be ready in early 2020.” (Dallas Morning News)
  4. Why Hospitals Are Getting into the Real Estate Business “The hospital's initiative was called Healthy Neighborhoods Healthy Families (HNHF). In partnership with the city and community groups like the United Way and a local Methodist congregation, HNHF renovated vacant homes for resale, built new affordable housing, and wrote checks to homeowners to fund renovations on their homes.” (NPR)
  5. America’s Real Estate System Pushes Rents Up and People Out. There’s Another Way. “For many small businesses, a landlord’s decision to sell up is the end of the story, another dream displaced by the pressures of speculation and gentrification. Not so for Hasta Muerte, an independent coffee shop in Oakland, California. After a year spent transforming the former gambling spot into a vibrant community space, complete with giant murals covering the walls outside, Hasta Muerte’s seven co-owners opened their doors to the largely Latinx Fruitvale neighborhood last November.” (Huffington Post)
  6. How to Transfer Heirloom Real Estate “This is a property that’s been in the family for a while and that you’d like to stay in the family’s hands. Heirloom real estate includes vacation homes or other second homes, farms, a longtime residence and similar properties, but not business or investment properties. Often the family real estate has been the site of pleasant memories for many family members.” (Forbes)
  7. How Desperate Can Texas Get for Construction Labor? Look at Houston After Hurricane Harvey “Drive through Meyerland, the established Houston neighborhood of well-kept ranch homes on inviting lots, and you’d be forgiven for thinking business has been good for Dan Bawden since Hurricane Harvey swept through town a year ago. Construction vans like his line the calm residential streets not far from the Brays Bayou. Workers painted one house while chain link fenced off a home not far away that was still just wood frame.” (Dallas Morning News)
  8. ARTIC Refinances 3 Luxury Hotels for $503M “Qatar-based Al Rayyan Tourism Investment Co. (ARTIC) has refinanced three of its luxury hotels for a total of $503 million, according to HFF, which arranged all three loans. The hotels, which total 1,049 guestrooms, are The Manhattan at Times Square Hotel; the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort, in Miami; and the St. Regis Washington, D.C. The three floating-rate loans were placed with Mack Real Estate Credit Strategies: a $290 million loan for The Manhattan at Times Square Hotel, a $132 million loan for the St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort and an $81 million loan for the St. Regis Washington, D.C. Each carries a four-year term with a one-year extension.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  9. Property Speculation Creates Chaos in Detroit Housing Market “Property speculation is causing dysfunction in Detroit's housing market and leading to blight and instability in neighborhoods, according to a newspaper investigation. University of Michigan-Dearborn Assistant Professor Joshua Akers documents Detroit property speculation on his website Property Praxis. Akers told the Detroit Free Press that the annual Wayne County tax foreclosure auction ‘is one of the greatest destabilizing forces’ in the city. ‘The auction is the perfect way to gamble. If a bet doesn't pay off in three years, all you lost is the initial purchase price,’ he said. ‘At least that's the speculative perspective. There is a much higher cost for the neighborhoods.’” (Midland Daily News)
  10. Teen Arrested After Bringing Fake Bomb Gear to Shopping Mall “Authorities say a would-be prankster ended up in juvenile hall after bringing fake bomb gear to a Southern California shopping mall. The Ventura County Star reports the Simi Valley Police Department says multiple 911 calls reported a subject walking around the Simi Valley Town Center on Sunday wearing what appeared to be a black ‘bomb vest’ with wires hanging from it. Authorities say the scenario was so alarming that at least one business closed and triggered an emergency alarm to summon law enforcement personnel.” (The Associated Press)
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