The Shops at Canal Place in downtown New Orleans.

NEW ORLEANS, LA—Sonnenblick-Eichner Company has arranged $111,000,000 of first mortgage financing for The Shops at Canal Place in downtown New Orleans, Louisiana.

The 214,256-square-foot urban mall is adjacent to the French Quarter and part of the 2.15 million-square-foot, mixed-use Canal Place development that includes a 438-room Westin Hotel and a 32-story, 641,415-square-foot office building.

“It is the dominant upscale retail center in the whole southeast region,” Elliot Eicher, principal of Sonnenblick-Eichner tells  “It draws from as far away as Alabama, there is nothing else like it in the area, it has that kind of rent roll, that kind of tenancy.”

Shops at Canal Place is anchored by the one of the best performing stores in the Saks Fifth Avenue chain totaling 108,460 square feet. Other high-end, boutique retailers include Tiffany, Armani, Anthropologie, and Lululemon.

Sonnenblick-Eichner arranged the initial loan in 2005 of $90 million.  The new 10-year loan, funded by a Wall Street investment bank, has a fixed interest rate of less than 5 percent with interest-only payments for the first 3 years of the loan.

“The loan was sized at a 7.57% debt yield, the lowest debt yield on record for a securitized mall financing,” says Eichner.

Eichner notes an average debt yield for a securitized mall financing is around 8-8.5%.

Los Angeles-based Sonnenblick-Eichner Company specializes in arranging structured finance for acquisition, construction and permanent loans, interim and mezzanine financing as well as joint-venture equity transactions.