Lenders Take Over Seattle-Area Condo Development

Bellevue, Wash.--Morgan Stanley and the other senior lenders have finalized their ownership of the unsold units of Bellevue Towers after the original developer threw in the towel.

By Dees Stribling, Contributing Editor

Bellevue, Wash.–Morgan Stanley and the other senior lenders on Bellevue Towers, a condominium development in downtown Bellevue, Wash., have finalized their ownership of the unsold units of the property after the original developer, Gerding Edlen, threw in the towel on its $275 million loan from Morgan Stanley et al. and a $67 million mezzanine loan. The 539-unit, two-story highrise had suffered from a case of seriously bad timing, with only 118 units sold since its completion in the throes of the economic crisis two years ago.

“As the housing market bottoms out and begins to recover, Bellevue Towers is well positioned for the retail sale out of the remaining homes,” Patrick Clark, principal with Realty Trust, the company tasked with marketing and selling the project, tells MHN. “Under the new consolidated ownership, the project will have long-term financial stability, while at the same time providing us with new resources to better market it.”

The condo units are now being offered, on average, for about 30 percent less than their original prices, which ranged from about $400,000 to $4.4 million. The price reduction, according to Realty Trust, reflects the realities of the residential real estate market, including the overall health of the economy, ongoing reductions in home values and the availability of financing. Still, the new investment by the consolidated ownership group allows for refreshed marketing, and 12 sales have been made in the last six weeks.

Bellevue Towers consists of a 42-story North Tower and a 43-story South Tower, with each offering dedicated concierge service. The development boasts the tallest towers in Bellevue, along with three new restaurants: Purple Cafe and Wine Bar, Barrio, and Lot 3. The development has been awarded LEED Gold status, making it one of the largest LEED Gold residential properties in the Northwest.

Residents have access to a 24,000-square-foot urban garden, private screening room, dining room with terrace and kitchen, fitness center, spa, and sun deck, as well as a community great room that opens to an outdoor terrace with fireplace. Standard finishes in the units include Viking or Wolf cook tops and ranges, Sub-Zero refrigerators, granite kitchen-counter backsplashes, and master bathrooms finished in marble or travertine.

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