Alex. Brown Realty and Healey Weatherholtz Properties, LLC Acquire Shops Around Lenox

Atlanta, GA – Shops Around Lenox, LLC, a joint venture between affiliates of Healey Weatherholtz Properties, LLC (HWP) and Alex. Brown Realty, (ABR) acquired the 126,000-square-foot Shops Around Lenox shopping center in Atlanta’s prestigious Buckhead submarket on June 30.

ABR Chesapeake Fund III is a value-added real estate investment fund sponsored by ABR and provided $6.3 million to the venture, an equity commitment arranged by Peter Fish of Sterling Real Estate Capital, LLC. HW Lenox, LLC, an affiliate of HWP contributed $4.2 million to the venture. State Farm Life Insurance Co. provided debt financing.

“The Shops Around Lenox is a terrific opportunity – rarely does a seven-acre site become available between a top-performing Neiman Marcus and a new W Hotel,” said Quill O. Healey II, Co-CEO of Healey Weatherholtz. “Our passion is re-imagining great locations; being adjacent to the Southeast’s dominant enclosed mall and within walking distance of ten million square feet of office space and seven premier hotels gives us a terrific canvas from which to work.” Healey also noted additional announcements will be made later this summer and early fall.

The shopping center was originally built in 1979 and its single-story buildings and open-air parking has become an anachronism among Buckhead’s recently-constructed glass towers and parking garages.

The venture plans to extensively reposition the property by upgrading exterior finishes, adding public art and bringing in a roster of leading independent retailers and top local food and beverage operators. The redevelopment is scheduled to be complete in the spring of 2010 and most retailers will remain open during the renovation. The renovation of Shops Around Lenox will begin this winter.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in the renovation of Shops Around Lenox,” said Tara Bretl, manager of Tootsies. “The Shops of Lenox is an amazing location and we hope that the renovation helps to further establish this part of Buckhead as a premier shopping destination.”

“Our mission is to finally give Buckhead a comfortable and authentic gathering place and a fun collection of restaurants and fashion and home retailers,” said Kelly Scott, Director of Leasing for Healey Weatherholtz. “Los Angeles has Robertson Boulevard and Dallas has Highland Park Village – why shouldn’t we have something better?”

At a time when many real estate investors are scrambling, the current economic environment presents opportunities for those with a long-term commitment.

“Properties with the intrinsic value of the Shops Around Lenox rarely trade hands and we look forward to participating in its next chapter,” said Peter Bancroft, Senior Vice President with ABR.

Alex. Brown Realty (ABR) is a privately-owned real estate investment manager organized in 1972 and headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland. ABR co-invests with joint venture partners in a broad spectrum of property types located throughout the United States. www.abrealty.com

Healey Weatherholtz Properties, LLC (HWC) is an Atlanta-based owner and operator of shopping centers. The company is privately owned by Quill O. Healey II and D. Eric Weatherholtz. www.hwproperties.com.

Sterling Real Estate Capital, LLC
is an Atlanta-based real estate investment banking firm dealing in all asset classes and specializing in private equity investments for real estate transactions and real estate operating companies. Sterling’s business lines include equity private placements, acquisition advisory, asset restructurings, and joint venture equity programs.