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CHICAGO-Thor Urban Property Fund, aligned with Thor Equities LLC, has closed on a $363-million refinancing of the historic Palmer House Hilton Hotel. The company is spending $117 million on a massive renovation plan for the hotel, at 17 East Monroe St., to be completed by mid-2008.

Anglo Irish Bank provided the financing, with a $157.7-million position in the deal and a $55-million subordinate position sold to Apollo Real Estate Finance Corp. and a $150-million senior position to CIBC.

Ben Singer, senior vice president with Jones Lang LaSalle, arranged the financing for Thor. “We took this property out to a broad, yet targeted group of lenders that we knew offered certainty of closing,” Singer says in a statement.

Thor purchased the 23-story hotel in August 2005 from Hilton Hotels Corp. for $215.4 million. Thor has already started the renovation program, which includes a lobby redevelopment, consolidating three restaurants into one.

Previous plans released by Thor include the following renovations: The Monroe Street entrance will be redesigned, fire escapes on the State Street side of the hotel will be replaced with interior fire escapes and storefronts on the Monroe and State street sides will be renovated. An indoor parking garage is also slated to be created, as well as a 4,000-sf penthouse at a cost of $9 million. The makeover of the 1,000-room property received endorsement from the city’s Commission on Chicago Landmarks.

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