One segment of the real estate investment sales market continues to perform better than others during the recession.

Multitenant retail properties and strip malls are being targeted by investors because they often offer the promise of steadier rents ?and with one Long Beach property ?big-name tenants.

That South Bay property, the Bixby Center, sold for $6.05 million April 30. Redwood City real estate investor Mike Dollinger purchased the 12-tenant strip mall at 4215 Atlantic Ave. from the Sarno Family Trust of Los Angeles.

Kirk Garabedian, a Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services Inc. broker who represented the seller, called the transaction an example of ? flight to value.?p>Tenants include Domino? Pizza, Cold Stone Creamery, Subway, It? a Grind Coffee House and Supercuts. While some of those businesses are franchises, the strong national brands were attractive to the buyer, said Joe Compagno of Marcus & Millichap.

?he buyer was attracted to the tenant base,?said Compagno, who represented Dollinger in the deal. ?t? a solid tenant basis; it? a stable shopping center. And there? the fact that it was a great infill location.?p>Dollinger did not return calls seeking comment.

The 20,740-square-foot building sold for $292 per square foot, a premium price in the recession. Bret King of Marcus & Millichap, who along with Garabedian represented the seller, said that the national tenants helped garner the high price.

The Sarno Family Trust purchased the property in 2001 for about $2 million, King said. The property, which has one vacancy, was listed in December for $6.45 million.

Airline Lease

Qantas Airways Ltd. signed a $2.1 million lease renewal in early May to stay at the Howard Hughes Towers in Westchester, near Los Angeles International Airport.

The deal for 11,755 square feet represents a downsizing of about 2,000 square feet. Qantas will give back that portion of space when the new five-year lease starts in October.

The company needs less space at the 6080 Center Drive West property because two of Qantas?related businesses there are moving, said Tony Morales of Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. who represented the airline in the deal with landlord Equity Office Properties.

?e feel that Qantas was rewarded for their long-term occupancy and their credit worthiness, and Qantas was very happy with overall economics of the deal,?Morales said.

Chris Houge of Madison Partners, who represented Equity Office, a unit of private equity company Blackstone Group LP, said the average rental rate for the lease is $2.98 per square foot per month ?a figure substantially less than the $4.50-per-square-foot-per-month asking rent of just a year ago.


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