SANTA ANA, CA—Partners Lincoln Property Co. and Angelo, Gordon & Co. have completed the sale of Griffin Towers, a class-A trophy office complex at 5 and 6 Hutton Centre Dr. here, to Blackstone for $129 million. The deal is being hailed as the largest commercial-office transaction to take place in Orange County this year.
As GlobeSt.com reported in December 2013, the deal was expected to close right around this time, according to Blaine and Colby Annett, co-managing partners of Stream Realty Partners. Griffin Towers in the South Coast Metro area of Orange County, 1 and 2 MacArthur Blvd. and Tustin Center—all in the Airport submarket—were expected to trade hands officially in the first or second quarter of 2014, the Annetts said.
Kevin Shannon, Bob Smith, Paul Jones and Ken White of CBRE represented Lincoln in the transaction, while Blackstone was self-represented.
Griffin Towers is a class-A twin-building office project situated on 7 acres in the master-planned MacArthur Place development. The 12-story-plus penthouse office buildings total 549.940 rentable square feet and include an adjacent six-story above-ground parking garage, a retail arcade featuring the newly opened Griffin Grill, a circular driveway plaza and a three-story granite atrium lobby.
Lincoln and its team have a considerable amount of renovation work on the property since acquiring it in March 2010. Changes include an extensive lobby upgrade; improvements to common-area corridors, elevators and the conference center; new landscaping, updated seating areas, renovations to the on-site café and redeployment of a dormant co-generation plant that now produces approximately 77% of the buildings’ power on-site.
Lincoln was able to improve occupancy from 71% to 88% as a result of its upgrade efforts. The building’s largest tenants include Corinthian Colleges, CH2M Hill, Ultimate Software and Premier Business Centers.
According to Kevin Hayes, SVP at Lincoln, “Our acquisition and subsequent sale of the Griffin Towers is representative of Lincoln’s value-add strategy as an owner, operator and manager of class-A office space across Southern California. “We identified a trophy asset in financial distress, invested energy and capital into alleviating deferred maintenance and took a hands-on approach to improving occupancy in a challenging leasing environment.”
GlobeSt.com was unable to reach Blackstone for comment on the transaction prior to deadline but will update this story as more information becomes available.