WELLESLEY, MA-In one of the highest per-sf sales in suburban Boston history, National Office Partners Limited Partnership has acquired the 270,000-sf Wellesley Gateway here for just under $70 million from a partnership of the Druker Co. Ltd. and Boylston Properties Co. The price of approximately $250 per sf was exceeded only by the purchase of Waltham Woods by ING Clarion in 2000, which topped $265 per sf.

The property was put out to bid in mid-June and received “tons of interest,” according to Ed Maher, executive director of Cushman & Wakefield, who was part of the team that brokered the sale. “We received eight credible offers from foreign partnerships, REIT’s, private groups and pension funds,” he tells Globest.com. The property was purchased in part by a pension fund, the California Public Employee’s Retirement system, which constitutes the NOP partnership with Hines, a privately owned real estate firm based in Houston.

Wellesley Gateway is the headquarters of Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare, which fully occupies the facility and holds a 10-plus year lease. The four-story, class A office building sits on 15.7-acres, and was built in 2000. Designed by Elkus/Manfredi Architects, it is located in the northwest quadrant of the Route 128/Interstate 95 and the Route 9 cloverleaf interchange. The building includes a full-service cafeteria, employee fitness center and structured parking for 1,114 cars.

“Wellesley Gateway is an exceptional addition to NOP’s portfolio,” says Daniel MacEachron, the Hines senior vice president who heads the NOP partnership. “We believe the Boston suburbs and the Route 128 corridor will experience solid growth for years to come.” The transaction represents the 13th building acquisition for NOP since its inception in July1998, a portfolio which also includes the 670,000-sf Riverfront Office Park in Cambridge.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Capital Market Investment Sales team of Robert E. Griffin, Maher, Marci Griffith Loeber and Christopher T. Griffin exclusively represented the owner and procured the buyer, Hines Interest LP, in the transaction. The deal was especially significant for Cushman & Wakefield, because it pushes the firm over the $2-billion mark in sales for the year.

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