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MORENO VALLEY, CA-Davlyn Investments of San Diego has acquired the 552-unit Stonegate at Towngate Apartments for $111.8 million in a deal that ranks as one of the largest single-asset multifamily sales in the history of the Inland Empire. According to Davlyn’s Irvine-based director of acquisitions, Aaron Pacillio, the deal came about after more than a year of discussions with the seller and is believed to be the largest single-asset apartment sale ever in the Inland Empire.

Davlyn bought the property, which is at 12640 Memorial Way, from Inland Empire Builders of Las Vegas in a direct deal between buyer and seller. Lending was provided by Eric Flyckt of Capmark Finance Inc.

Pacillio says that Davlyn views the investment as a “core quality, newly constructed, luxury asset that’s located in the heart of Southern California’s job creation engine, the Inland Empire.” He cites the 26,000 jobs that have been created annually in the Riverside and San Bernardino counties region since the year 2000, along with the 25,000 additional jobs expected from the redevelopment of nearby March Air Force Base.

Another factor he cites that favors the Stonegate property is the strong outlook for apartments in light of the “rent-versus-buy” housing affordability gap. For-sale housing prices have risen sharply in recent years in the Inland Empire, a trend that bodes well for the apartment market, according to industry forecasts.

The acquisition of the Stonegate apartments marks Davlyn’s fourth multifamily purchase of 2007, including two others in the Inland Empire and one in Los Angeles. The San Diego-based company, in addition to being an owner/operator of apartment properties comprising approximately 3,500 units, owns condominiums and office buildings throughout California.

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