Hotel & Resort

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    $212,250,000 Non-Recourse Senior Construction Financing for the Ground-Up Development of a Montage and Pendry Resort & Residences, La Quinta, CA

    January 15, 2019

    Transaction Description:

    George Smith Partners successfully placed $212,250,000 of non-recourse, senior construction financing for the development of a 240-key, dual-branded, 5-star Montage and Pendry resort in La Quinta California. The 525-acre project encompasses multiple construction and financing phases and will offer luxury residential and hospitality spaces. The Hotel and Residences are designed around a world-class Arnold Palmer golf course. The Project’s design aesthetic combines modern elements with classic desert architecture.

    This initial financing includes a 140-key Montage Resort, a 200-key Pendry Resort, a shared-services building, and a golf club house as well as several Montage and Pendry branded residences and condominium units. The financing also included up to an additional $100MM of capital for the development of up to 29 Branded Montage Residences and 66 Branded Pendry Condominium Residences. Three additional planning areas that are currently contiguous with the development site will be sold off to third party homebuilders, with the proceeds from these land sales being recontributed into the Project.

    GSP was able to source a lender who not only shared the Sponsor’s vision and passion for the Development, but also recognized the Sponsor’s ability to execute complex, large-scale master planned developments. Despite the complex takedown structure, GSP devised, planned and executed a creative structure that provided the Sponsor with sufficient loan proceeds, while minimizing the Lender’s risk profile throughout the development.

    All terms of the financing are confidential.

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    $115,000,000 of Non-Recourse High-Leverage Senior Construction Financing for the Ground Up Development of a 326-Key Four-Star Radisson BLU Hotel in Anaheim, CA

    December 5, 2018

    Transaction Description

    George Smith Partners placed a $115,000,000 non-recourse senior construction loan for the ground up development of a 326-key four-star Radisson BLU Hotel in Anaheim, CA. The Property is located in the Disneyland/Anaheim Convention Center submarket less than 1 mile from Disneyland Park. Once completed, the 12 story luxury hotel will be one of the few four star offerings available outside the Park and will feature an innovative, modern design. The amenity rich property will include a rooftop pool and deck with unobstructed views of the famous Disneyland nightly fireworks show and surrounding area. Catering to the Park-going family travelers, bunkbeds will be included in over half the rooms, and the hotel will feature a ground floor pool as well as upscale food and beverage offerings.


    The Project will be the first major development east of Interstate 5 in the Disneyland submarket. Additionally, the Hotel is slated to be the 4th Radisson BLU in the United States and will be one of the first four-star offerings available outside of the Disneyland Park.


    GSP focused on the submarket’s underlying fundamentals, including 28 million annual visitors, as well as its resilient occupancy rates and average daily rates that stayed relatively consistent through the recession. GSP also demonstrated that the Hotel is likely to capture an outsize share of the submarket’s 4 million annual international visitors. This is due to Radisson’s strong international branding supported by the fact that nearly all 300 Radisson BLUs are located outside the United States. Finally, GSP highlighted the Hotel’s upscale nature, which currently does not exist outside the Park, family friendly design and strong amenity package.

    These efforts resulted in a high leverage, non-recourse execution.

    All terms are confidential.

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    $17,725,000 Non-Recourse Construction Financing for a 127-Key Cambria-Branded Lifestyle Hotel in the Roosevelt Row Arts District of Phoenix, AZ

    October 10, 2018

    Transaction Description:

    George Smith Partners secured $17,725,000 in non-recourse construction financing for the development of a 127-key Cambria-flagged lifestyle hotel in the Roosevelt Row Arts District of Phoenix, Arizona. This financing facility allowed the Sponsor to begin construction on the first of several projects slated for delivery within Roosevelt Row (Ro2). The Sponsor won a city-led RFP bid earlier this year that provided them with control and ownership of four contiguous city blocks within the core Ro2 area. This was the Sponsor’s first lifestyle branded hotel development and their first hotel development within the state of Arizona. These facts presented a challenge for many groups, despite their extensive experience developing other asset classes, including Monroe 44, the tallest residential building in Arizona.

    GSP sourced a hospitality lender who shared the Sponsor’s vision and excitement about the revitalization of the historic community, recognizing their ability to execute this project under the Cambria Brand. Despite several collateral restrictions presented throughout the application process, GSP was able to facilitate creative alternative scenarios for security of both Lender and Sponsor, ultimately achieving a mutually agreeable solution and additional proceeds to cover the new shortfall. The three year floating rate note was priced at 1 Month LIBOR + 7.50%, and was sized to 68.0% of project costs.

    Rate: 1 Mo. LIBOR + 7.50%
    Term: 3+1+1
    Amortization: Interest Only
    LTC: 68.0%
    Guarantee: Non-Recourse (with standard bad boy carve-outs)

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    Hotel Refinancing: $33,225,000 Bridge Loan – Construction Refinance for a 213-Key Boutique Lifestyle Hotel

    May 16, 2018

    George Smith Partners successfully closed a construction take-out and bridge refinance for a 213-key boutique lifestyle hotel located in the Southwest. The proceeds were used to refinance costlier construction financing, including a mezzanine facility. The loan featured an earnout of additional proceeds as well as a capital improvements budget. The hotel recently opened and thus significant operating history was not available. Additionally, the in-depth rehabilitation elevated the exterior corridor hotel to a new market segment which brought with it unique challenges.

    GSP’s mandate was to source a lender who not only had the ability to execute in a timely fashion, but one who recognized the value in the excellent location and strategic positioning of the Hotel. The selected lender needed to have a deep understanding of all aspects of the deal, from a millennial-focused customer demographic, to the significant food and beverage component reflected in the Hotel’s two restaurants and secret whisky bar.

    The selected lender was able to recognize the unique value proposition of the property and the strong sponsorship involved in the project.

    Rate: L+535
    Term: 3 Years
    Amortization: Interest Only
    Loan to Cost: 83%
    Guarantee: Non-Recourse

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    $25,200,000 Acquisition and Redevelopment Loan for a 120 – Key Select Service Hotel in Davis, CA

    April 4, 2018

    George Smith Partners has arranged $25,200,000 (85% of project costs) of non-recourse acquisition and redevelopment financing for an un-flagged, family run, 120-Key select-service hotel in Davis, California. To date, the Property has not undergone any significant renovations since opening in the 1980’s. Despite the properties’ dated appearance, the hotels close proximity (less than half a mile) to the UC Davis campus has provided it with ample foot traffic resulting in attractive operating metrics. Over the last three years, the property has consistently produced significant positive Operating Income solidifying the Sponsor’s business plan and confirming that extensive property wide renovations would lead to significant value creation. In addition to completely renovating the Property, the Sponsor plans to re-flag the property with a high quality, nationally recognized brand.

    GSP identified a capital provider who was comfortable providing fixed-rate leverage, providing a needed level of security to the client against an increasing rate environment. This structure was a crucial factor in the decision making process for the Sponsor, as the high proceeds level at 85% loan to cost made the project even more sensitive to changes in index rates.

    Rate: 8.25% Fixed
    Term: 60 Months
    Amortization: I/O
    LTC: 85%
    Guarantee: Non-Recourse

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    Hotel Refinancing San Francisco: $45,000,000 Bridge Loan – Construction Refinance for a 131-Key Luxury Lifestyle Hotel in San Francisco

    March 14, 2018

    George Smith Partners successfully closed a construction take-out and bridge refinance for a 131-key luxury/lifestyle hotel located in the heart of the trendy Mid-Market neighborhood of San Francisco. The proceeds were used to refinance costlier construction financing, including a large mezzanine facility. The loan featured an interest reserve, T&I reserve, and a working capital reserve. Additionally, the existing capital stack included Historical and New Market Tax Credits, and EB-5 Capital – adding to the overall complexity of the Transaction.

    GSP’s mandate was to source a lender who not only had the existing wherewithal to understand the complex existing capital stack, but also one who would recognize the value in the unique and strategic positioning of the Hotel. From non-traditional lodging options, to significant Food and Beverage offerings, the Hotel stands out from the traditional hotel offering by spanning over multiple lodging markets: luxury and lifestyle. The seasoned Sponsorship group has a proven track record of developing and operating hotels of similar caliber.

    The selected lender was able to recognize the unique positioning of the property’s offering and the strong sponsorship involved in the project.

    All Terms Confidential

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    $4,300,000 Refinance/Cash-Out of a Southern California 15 Key Motel

    January 31, 2018

    George Smith Partners successfully arranged $4,300,000 to refinance a 15 key motel on Coronado Island, San Diego. GSP identified a local lender who understood the Sponsor’s entitlement play based on their past success, their proposed development plans post entitlement, and the value of the land, which was exempt from any influence of the California Coastal Commission. Ultimately, the lender sized the loan to 66.8% of “As Is” appraised value. The two-year interest only note is priced at 4.50% above LIBOR and has 2 six-month extension options. Upon successfully obtaining the required entitlements, the Sponsor plans to refinance with a construction loan for a planned 39 key hotel.

    Rate: LIBOR + 4.50%
    Term: 2 Years + 2 Six Month Extensions
    Amortization: Interest Only
    LTV: 66.8%
    Guarantee: Top 20% Recourse

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    $14,000,000 Non-Recourse Upscale Boutique Hotel Reposition Financing on Ground Lease

    November 22, 2017

    George Smith Partners arranged the 65% of cost reposition and conversion financing of a historic building to a 96-key upscale boutique hotel in Seattle, Washington. A 75-year ground lease was recently renegotiated to make debt financing more palatable. The capital structure implemented a historic tax credit funding to facilitate the property reposition and conversion of use. GSP underwrote the monetized value of the ground lease to articulate the gross lease payments were below the actual cost of what the land acquisition would have been to the project: IE; it is less expensive to lease the land rather than acquire in an arms-length transaction. Terms of the 65% loan-to-cost non-recourse loan are confidential.

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    $50,000,000 Non-Recourse Construction Loan to Develop Los Angeles International Airport Dual Branded Hyatt Hotel

    November 8, 2017

    Transaction Description:
    George Smith Partners arranged $50,000,000 in non-recourse senior construction financing for the adaptive reuse of a 1960s vintage office tower one block from LAX in Los Angeles into a dual-branded Hyatt Hotel. The Sponsor’s business plan is to convert the existing 13 story 250,000 square foot office building into a 401 key Hyatt House and Hyatt Place hotel that features a trendy Mid-Century inspired urban design. The completed project, which will feature both select service and extended stay products, will capitalize on the LAX hotel submarket’s historically high occupancy rates and strong demand drivers. Sized to 50% of total project cost, the interest only loan will float at a spread of 425 basis points over 1 month LIBOR for 3 years and carries two 1-year extension options.

    It was crucial to find a lender who was comfortable with hotel construction financing at this point in the cycle, a significant tranche of EB-5 financing, an unsubordinated ground lease and a parking agreement with an adjacent parking garage owner. As the Sponsor’s required bank execution, it was critical that the transaction was structured to comply with High Volatility Commercial Real Estate (“HVCRE”) banking regulation.

    GSP sourced a lender with extensive experience in ground-up hospitality transactions and with a favorable view of the supply constrained LAX submarket. GSP demonstrated the Sponsor’s attractive basis in the asset, the submarket’s resilient occupancy rates and average daily rates, and the project’s appealing design relative to the submarket’s dated competitive set, which ultimately allowed the capital provider to get comfortable with the transaction. GSP also assisted in structuring the transaction to ensure HVCRE compliance.

    Rate: 1 Month LIBOR + 4.25%
    Term: 3 + 1 + 1
    Amortization: Interest Only
    LTC: 50%
    Guarantee: Non-Recourse

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    Hotel Financing – $3,710,000 Fixed Rate Financing on Limited Service Hotel

    October 25, 2017

    Hotel Financing – George Smith Partners placed $3,710,000 financing on a 79-unit limited service hotel in the Southwestern United States.  Constructed in 2010 by our Sponsor, all loan proceeds were used to refinance the existing debt and cover closing costs.  GSP identified a lender who was comfortable with the borrower’s strength and understood the economics of the transaction.  During underwriting, the appraisal came in at a value more conservative than expected. Our capital source agreed to advance a short term commercial loan of $200,000 at Prime plus 1.25%, self-amortized over 5 years to avoid the need for additional cash equity infusion from our Sponsor. Fixed for 5 years at 5.25%, the senior loan floats for two years at Prime plus 1.25% for the seven-year term.

    Rate: 5.25% fixed for 5 years, Prime plus 1.25% thereafter/ Prime plus 1.25%
    Term: 7 years, fixed for 5 years / 5 years
    Amortization: 25 years / 5 years
    LTV: 69%
    Prepayment: 5% 4% 3% 2% 1%
    Lender Fee: 0.50%

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    $85,000,000 Refinance of San Diego Pendry Hotel

    October 18, 2017

    George Smith Partners successfully placed the refinance on the flagship 317 room Pendry Hotel in the historic Gaslamp quarter of downtown San Diego. The Hotel and the brand were launched in early 2017 as the new luxury hotel brand operated under the Montage platform. Pendry fills the void between service-oriented luxury hotels and design-oriented boutique hotels. In 2014, GSP successfully placed the construction financing. Proceeds from this refinance were used to repay that facility.

    GSP’s mandate was to source a lender who would recognize the value in the unique attributes for this Hotel, including its unique Food & Beverage offerings. While there were numerous financing providers who were interested in this opportunity, our client ultimately selected a national debt fund that understood the strength in the asset, the strong capabilities of the Sponsor and market demand of both business and leisure travelers who will frequent the property over the coming years.

    Rate: LIBOR + 585
    Term: 4 years with a 1 year extension option
    Amortization: Interest-only
    Prepayment: 24 months
    Guarantee: Non-Recourse

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    $13,740,000 Non-Recourse Acquisition Bridge Loan of Land Parcels For a Future $200,000,000 Mixed-Use Hotel Development Project; 5-Day Close

    September 27, 2017

    Transaction Description:
    George Smith Partners successfully placed a $13,740,000 acquisition bridge loan to acquire two land parcels and refinance three adjacent land parcels for a large mixed use hotel and condo development site in the heart of the Koreatown district of Los Angeles. With the final components of the land assemblage completed, the $200,000,000 mixed used development project is scheduled to break ground in March of 2018. Our Sponsor’s initial business plan was to build the mixed use project on three parcels of land previously held in his portfolio. The opportunity to acquire two adjacent parcels will allow him to double the total buildable square footage of the project. Fixed for 12 months, the non-recourse loan does not carry any prepayment penalty and closed in 5 days.

    It was crucial to identify a lender who could close quickly, provide leverage, and waive any prepayment penalty. Due to the upcoming March 2018 groundbreaking, existing tenants on the current 3 parcel assemblage were all on short term leases with discounted rents. As a result, in place cash flow had been compressed and limited the ability for institutional lenders to get comfortable with the property and provide meaningful proceeds. Additionally, a fast close was necessary to take advantage of a seller discount.

    GSP identified an unconventional lender who focused on the future value of the five parcel assemblage and shovel ready development site rather than the current value based on in-place NOI. This capital provider closed the loan in 5 days, allowing the Sponsor to achieve a significant discount on the purchase price. The capital provider also waived all prepayment penalties, assuring the Sponsor would preserve significant capital once the subsequent construction loan is placed within the next few months.


    Rate: 7.99%
    Term: 1 Year with a 1 Year Extension
    Amortization: Interest Only
    Guaranty: Non-Recourse
    Prepayment Penalty: None