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NEW YORK CITY-The global hospitality group of Cushman & Wakefield Sonnenblick Goldman has arranged a $43-million refinancing of the Courtyard Manhattan/Midtown East, located at 866 Third Ave. The 312-key property is owned by DiamondRock Hospitality Group, which acquired it in 2004.

Mark Gordon, head of CWSG’s US hotel group, declines to name the capital provider, which he identifies as a life company. According to an SEC filing by Bethesda, MD-based DiamondRock, that company is Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. Gordon tells GlobeSt.com that the insurer is a first-timer in providing financing during this portion of the cycle–a trend he’s seen lately.

“If you look at five of the most recent hotel loans we’ve completed, and another six we have in the works, all are with new lenders,” says Gordon, an EVP at CWSG. He specifies “new” as lenders who have not been active in this sector for the past seven years; in other words, they did not participate during the peak of the current cycle.

“A whole new generation of lenders has emerged from the current economic situation,” Gordon says. He adds that they’re taking advantage of the downturn to carve out market share.

In a release, Gordon says CWSG was able to structure “a unique transaction which met the specific needs of our client,” including a forward commitment, provided in May of this year, to fund during September. “This loan provision resulted in significant savings for our client.”

Gordon tells GlobeSt.com that the insurer was persuaded to do the refi due to the continuing strong fundamentals of the Manhattan hotel market in general and of the Midtown East property in particular, as well as the property’s institutional ownership by DiamondRock and management by Marriott. According to DiamondRock’s SEC filing, the five-year loan carries a fixed rate of 8.81%. The current financing was due to expire in December of this year.

Along with Gordon, director Jared Kelso and associate Alison Tan represented DiamondRock in arranging the financing.

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