(Crystal Proenza is associate editor of RealEstateFlorida.)

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HOLLYWOOD, FL- Manhasset, NY-based Milbrook Properties Ltd. hasacquired Hollywood Palms Shopping Center, a 210,864-sf retailplaza, for $26.5 million. The Publix-anchored property is locatedat the intersection of Taft Street and North 68th Avenue.

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"This sale is part of a positive [retail] trend that willestablish value benchmarks allowing buyers to gauge pricing, whichwill benefit the overall investment market," says Adam Feinstein ofCushman & Wakefield, who represented seller Hollywood Palms LLCin the deal. The previous owner-backed by Daryl Stair, president ofPlantation-based Stair's Management-added value to the propertythrough renovations, an improved tenant lineup and additions overthe four years it owned the property.

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The center underwent major renovations in 2000 when a new anchorstore was built for Publix, as well as a freestanding building forWalgreen's, Feinstein tells GlobeSt.com. Another 20,000 sf wasadded this year to the center, which is now 94% leased and alsoanchored by Goodwill Industries, Bealls Outlet, Dollar General andRent-A-Center.

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Leasing rates at the center were not released. The property ispart of the Dania/Hollywood submarket of Fort Lauderdale, whichenjoys the highest effective rental rates in the market at $20 persf, according to Marcus & Millichap's second-quarter retailreport. Vacancy rates in the submarket are at 7.6%, up nearly twopercentage points over the past year.

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Transaction activity has slowed in the Fort Lauderdale metroarea as a result of the credit market climate, according to Marcus& Millichap. However, this particular deal was not held back bythe problems clouding the capital markets, says C&W's MarkGilbert, who also represented the seller. "The days of 80percent-plus financing are gone, leaving only well-capitalizedinvestors able to purchase properties," he says.

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