Cerulean Partners plans to rename its Vegas acquisition The Echelon.

CHICAGO-Cerulean Partners, LLC, a real estate investment firm in suburban Chicago, revealed on Monday that it had acquired Destinations at Eastern, a 116-unit independent senior-living community in Las Vegas. Cerulean and its management partner, Missouri-based Arrow Senior Living, will rebrand the property as The Echelon, invest up to $500,000 in capital improvements and attempt to boost occupancy and net income over the next few years.

It’s yet another sign that the Las Vegas market, perhaps the hardest hit by the burst housing bubble, is slowly making its way back to something resembling health. Last month, Trulia released findings that showed asking home prices in the desert city had increased 16.3% during 2012, a huge improvement over 2011′s steep decline.

“We think the basis, low leverage, and upside for The Echelon coupled with a rebounding Vegas economy will prove rewarding for our investors,” says Kerry Haskins, managing partner of Cerulean. The firm was joined on this acquisition by California investment funds Real Estate Special Opportunity Portfolio and Real Estate Portfolio Management.

Cerulean will also consider making the property more attractive to prospective tenants by adding personal care services, such as home health aides for the elderly and assisted living units.  

The firm was founded in 2011and has sought to acquire distressed or underperforming properties for senior citizens. They acquired their first, The Atrium of Belleville, a 76-unit independent senior community just east of St. Louis, the same year.

At that time, managing partner Rick Shamberg said, “our objective is to build a portfolio of properties that approaches $75 to $100 million.”