The owners of the Promenade at Howard Hughes have put the struggling Westside retail and entertainment center on the market.


A partnership of ORIX Real Estate Equities and J.H. Snyder & Co. have hired REZA Investment Group LLC to sell the 250,000-square-foot property.


Jerry Snyder, principal in J.H. Snyder, confirmed that the property is for sale but declined further comment. Snyder and ORIX developed the venue a mixture of retail, restaurants and an upscale movie theater in 2000.


Even with a healthy lunch crowd of workers from nearby office buildings, restaurants at the Promenade haven't fared well, sources familiar with the property said.


Nordstrom Rack and Borders Books and Music locations have done well, although the center relies on an 18-screen movie theater operated by Bridge Cinema for nearly half its revenues, according to trade publication Real Estate Alert. It first reported on the possibility of ORIX listing the property last year.


The center has been criticized for having an odd layout with restaurants perched on a balcony and confusing parking garages.


South Bay Sales


Two Commerce business parks accounting for nearly half the submarket's office space traded hands last week for a cumulative $73.5 million.


Argus Realty bought the 285,368-square-foot Commerce Office Park from a partnership of Summit Commercial and Lehman Bros. for $50 million.


The five-building complex at the northeast corner of Eastern and Slauson avenues is 99 percent leased, mostly to government agencies that include the state Department of Motor Vehicles and the L.A. County Sheriff's Department and District Attorney's Office.


Meanwhile, Abby Co. bought the 194,130-square-foot, two-building Commerce Plaza at the northwest corner of Slauson and Eastern avenues from Laguna-based Pacifica Real Estate Group for $23.5 million.


Kevin Shannon, a senior vice president with Grubb & Ellis Co. represented the buyer and seller in both deals. He was assisted by colleagues Scott Schumacher and Michael Moore. Trammell Crow Co.'s Tom Sheets worked on the Commerce Office Park deal.


Staying Put


Now that his pioneering Sunset + Vine mixed-use complex has been sold, Larry Bond is turning to other activities in Hollywood.


Last week, Bond was expected to close on two parcels at 1417 and 1433 Cole Place, south of Sunset Boulevard, for an undisclosed price.


Bond intends to build 50 condominiums on the adjacent sites, which are directly across from CNN's offices in the Sunset Tower. Combined, both parcels have about 24,440 square feet of low-rise office and warehouse buildings.


Earlier this month, Bond and partner Canyon Johnson Urban Fund sold the Sunset + Vine complex, with 300 apartments above 87,000-square-feet of retail stores, for $165 million to SSR Realty Advisors Inc. The project is credited with spurring other housing developments in the area.


Bond said he will try to keep prices on the Cole Place condos low, but said he doesn't have a range yet. "We're not focusing on exceptionally large units because we're focusing on price point," he said.


Bond also said Whole Foods Market Inc. has backed out as the anchor tenant for a mixed-use project he is planning at the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Garfield Place. Tentative plans still call for 110 apartments or condominiums above an undetermined amount of space for shops and restaurants.


Also in Hollywood, condo developer Palisades Development Group has secured a prime location near the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street for a new project.


Avi Brosh, principal of Palisades Development, has formed a joint venture with Herman Properties to build a 75,000-square-foot mixed-use building at 1717 Vine St.


Herman Properties has owned the 26,500-square-foot surface parking lot located between nightclub Deep and concert venue Avalon for nearly 70 years, Brosh said.


Brosh said the deal came together because Palisades has been hired to convert the nearby Equitable office building into condos. Brosh said he is envisioning four stories of housing above ground floor shops and restaurants and two levels of underground parking.


More Hollywood


The agreement struck last week to develop nearly seven acres of Hollywood Boulevard land owned by the Nederlander family is the largest private deal of its kind in Hollywood's recent history.


Nederlander Producing Co. of America Inc. signed a 99-year ground lease with Clarett Hollywood LLC, a partnership of New York-based Clarett Group LLP and Prudential Real Estate Investors to develop a $300 million residential and retail project.


Clarett's initial proposal calls for a mixed-use project with more than 1,000 residential units, including as many as 300 condos, above 200,000 square feet of shops and restaurants at the nearly 7-acre site straddling Hollywood Boulevard between Argyle Avenue and Gower Street. There would also be an expansive underground garage.


Play for Playa


Real estate mogul Rob Maguire, founder of Maguire Properties Inc., has purchased the remaining interest in the Water's Edge office park in Playa Vista for $85.5 million.


Equity Office Properties Trust announced in its fourth quarter earnings statement that Maguire had purchased its 87.5 percent interest in the prime Westside office park. Maguire owned the remaining stake in the campus, which he developed.


Maguire, who took out a personal loan to fund the transaction, couldn't be reached.


Maguire Properties has an option to buy the 239,000-square-foot Water's Edge complex from its co-chief executive if it deems the acquisition "appropriate," said company spokeswoman Peggy Moretti. The rights, which include a formula to price any purchase, stem from when Maguire took his company public.


She said the company, which is finalizing a deal to buy the 10-building portfolio of CommonWealth Properties LLC., isn't considering buying the property. "Our immediate focus is to execute the CommonWealth properties portfolio acquisition," she said. Electronic Arts Inc. leases about 85 percent of the complex, located at 5510 Lincoln Blvd. With the purchase, Maguire also has approvals for a 192,000-square-foot expansion of the campus.


Staff reporter Andy Fixmer can be reached by phone at (323) 549-5225, ext. 263, or by e-mail at afixmer@labusinessjournal.com .

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