New York Life REI Originates $94M for Bay Area Office Asset

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Rendering of 520 S. El Camino Real

Westlake Realty Group, a full-service, family-owned real estate firm based in the San Francisco Bay area, is financing a complete renovation of its headquarters520 S. El Camino Real in San Mateo, Calif.with a $94.1 million mortgage loan originated by New York Life Real Estate Investors.

The 20-year bridge-to-perm mortgage will finance the redevelopment of the 118,000-square-foot office tower and provide two separate earnout options for Westlake Realty Group. The first can be earned by achieving certain leasing hurdles during stabilization, and the second can be used to finance the future renovation of the property’s annex building by hitting present leasing hurdles, according to New York Life REI.

“This property’s prominence and excellent location will make it one of the top office properties in the area,” Adam Baird, director in New York Life REI’s Western regional office, said in a prepared statement.

Westlake Realty Group, which has a diverse portfolio of office, multifamily, hotel, retail and mixed-use assets in the San Francisco Bay area and Western U.S., decided last year to do a complete remodel of the nine-story building it has owned since 1975. Westlake Urban, a development arm of Westlake Realty Group, began construction on the project in August. Designed by RMW Architects, the multimillion-dollar redevelopment will include seismic retrofitting to fortify the 59-year-old building’s infrastructure and completely overhaul the mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems. A glass and stone exterior will replace the original facade, updating the exterior and bringing in natural light.

Rendering of 520 S. El Camino Real

Interiors will be fully renovated and tenant amenities will include shared conference spaces, rooftop patios, barbecue stations and plenty of gathering spaces. The remodel will add 6,379 square feet of combined indoor and outdoor space on the second and third floors. Sustainable features include electric vehicle parking areas, charging stations and covered bike parking. The building, located in downtown San Mateo, is close to CalTrain and several SamTrans bus lines.

Westlake Realty Group plans to return its headquarters to the building once the renovations are completed in early 2020.

Busy February

In February, the firm completed the second phase of its San Leandro Tech Campus, a six-story, 132,000-square-foot office building at 1500 Alvarado St. in San Leandro, Calif. Westlake Realty Group financed the construction of the project with a $37 million loan from City National Bank, according to Yardi Matrix Data. The first phase of the 1 million-square-foot mixed-use development opened in November 2016. Future additions are set to include another office building and a seven-story, 202-unit multifamily property.

New York Life REI was also busy in the San Francisco Bay area in February. The firm sold Century Plaza, a Class A, 103,622-square-foot office building in San Jose, Calif., for $63.4 million to The Muller Co. and CIGNA Investment Management.

On the East Coast, New York Life REI provided a $75 million mezzanine loan in September to a joint venture between Fisher Brothers and Sungate Park Avenue Trust for Park Avenue Plaza. The owners received a seven-year term, fixed-rate loan for the 44-story, 1.2 million-square-foot Class A office tower at 55 E. 52nd St. in Manhattan’s Plaza District.

Images courtesy of Westlake Urban

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