San Diego Business Journal

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At 50, SeaWorld Sees New Challenges

TOURISM: Controversies, Celebration Share Spotlight

SeaWorld San Diego is looking to make a splash as it celebrates its 50th anniversary this month as one of the region’s most popular visitor attractions, while also contending with unwanted controversy related to its parent company’s handling of its star killer whale performers.

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Pyramid Power

PROPERTY: Co. Bets It Can Shape Up an Office Market in Miramar

The latest office acquisition of Alliance Diversified Holdings LLC is not hard to find on a stretch of Miramar Road long dominated by furniture stores and strip retail centers.

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Sudberry Properties Buys Scripps Ranch Buildings for $8 Million

San Diego-based Sudberry Properties Inc. has purchased two Scripps Ranch buildings for $8 million, on a site where it plans to build a shopping center, according to CoStar Group and public data.

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Walmart Neighborhood Market Opens El Cajon Store

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. plans a March 14 opening for its new Walmart Neighborhood Market store, at 300 N. 2nd St. in El Cajon.

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ROIC Buys Poway Retail Center for $43.9 Million

San Diego-based Retail Opportunity Investments Corp., also known as ROIC, has purchased Creekside Plaza, a six-building shopping center in Poway, for approximately $43.9 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

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Eddie V’s Opens Newest Restaurant at The Headquarters

Eddie V’s Prime Seafood, a brand of Florida-based Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE: DRI) has opened its newest location at 789 W. Harbor Drive, in The Headquarters at Seaport District retail center in downtown San Diego.

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Taylor Morrison Buys Pacific Highlands Ranch Home Lots for $34.4 Million

The Southern California division of Taylor Morrison Homes has purchased 28.79 acres of property in San Diego’s Pacific Highlands Ranch neighborhood for approximately $34.4 million, with plans to build 174 houses, according to brokerage company Colliers International.

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SR Commercial Buys Vista Industrial Portfolio for $15.2 million

Solana Beach-based investment and development firm SR Commercial has acquired four Vista industrial buildings, totaling more than 168,000 square feet, for $15.2 million.

Port Approves Bank Financing for Kona Kai Resort Renovation

The Unified Port of San Diego has approved a financing plan for a renovation of Kona Kai Resort at Shelter Island, under which hotel operators will obtain a maximum $16.5 million loan from Torrey Pines Bank.

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Vista Retail Center Sells for $6.1 Million

Norco Estate Investment LLC of Rancho Cucamonga has bought a seven-building retail center in Vista for $6.1 million.

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Encinitas Apartments Sell for $3 Million

A locally based trust bought the 11-unit Gardena Gardens Apartments in Encinitas for $3 million.

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History-Themed Tavern With Museum Opens in Carlsbad

A history-themed venue featuring a 22,000-square-foot replica of a Colonial-era Boston tavern has opened in Carlsbad.

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Encinitas Apartments Sell for $3 Million

A locally based trust bought the 11-unit Gardena Gardens Apartments in Encinitas for $3 million.

Better Times Turn the Good Locations Into Retail Hot Spots

No official word at press time on whether any of San Diego County’s RadioShack stores — numbering 34, according to the retailer’s website — will get the axe as the Texas-based company carries out plans to close up to 1,100 of its more than 5,000 U.S. locations, amid continued sales woes. But one thing has rec

Luna Grill Carefully Plots Expansion Course for Restaurant Chain

Dining: Plans Include Opening First Location In Texas, More Locally

For San Diego-based restaurant operator Premier Food Concepts LLC, the recipe for growth is a careful blending of healthy menu items, strategic site selections and patience.

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History-Themed Tavern With Museum Opens in Carlsbad

A history-themed venue featuring a 22,000-square-foot replica of a Colonial-era Boston tavern has opened in Carlsbad.

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Westin Invests to Help Lawyers Prep for Battle

Hospitality: ‘War Rooms’ Leverage Proximity to Courtroom

The recently completed $15 million renovation of downtown’s Westin San Diego included the addition of what some might call a turbo-charged version of a conference facility, tailored specifically to lawyers.

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Pirch Expanding to Chicago, Dallas Area

Retail: Approach to Selling Fixtures Attracts High-end Malls

San Diego-based Pirch is raising its national profile as it opens news stores and competes in the hyper-competitive home improvement retail industry.

National City Apartments Get $23.5 Million in Refinancing

The San Diego office of commercial real estate services company HFF Inc. has secured $23.5 million in refinancing for two apartment communities totaling 141 units in National City.

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Opening Set for Dunkin’ Donut, Ice Cream Shop at Embassy Suites

Massachusetts-based Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc. plans a March 10 opening for its combination Dunkin’ Donuts/ Baskin-Robbins restaurant, at downtown’s Embassy Suites San Diego Bay hotel.

San Diego City Council Repeals Development Fee Increase

San Diego City Council has voted to repeal a planned increase in commercial developer “linkage” fees, rather than place it on the June 3 ballot.

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Oceanside Apartments Sold for $38.25 million

Sunterra Apartments LLC, which includes Benedict Canyon Equities of Sherman Oaks, has purchased the 240-unit Sunterra Apartment Homes in Oceanside for $38.25 million, according to Institutional Property Advisors, which arranged the sale.

Six San Diego Office Buildings Part of $100 Million Portfolio Deal

New York-based SL Green Realty Corp. has agreed to sell its 43.7 percent interest in a Southern California office portfolio of 28 properties, including six San Diego buildings, for $100 million.

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Sorrento Mesa Industrial Building Sells for $6.7 Million

Tig Real Estate Holdings LLC of San Diego has purchased a Sorrento Mesa industrial building for $6.7 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

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Mixed-use Condo Project Planned on Bankers Hill Land Acquired for $5.3 Million

CR Fifth & Nutmeg, in care of San Diego-based developer Colrich, has purchased a Bankers Hill land parcel for approximately $5.3 million, with plans to develop an upscale mixed-use condominium project.

Leucadia National Boosts Stake in HomeFed Corp. in Cash-Stock Deal

New York City-based Leucadia National Corp. will increase its stake in investment and development firm HomeFed Corp., under terms of an agreement in which the Carlsbad-headquartered HomeFed will receive $18.4 million in cash, along with certain real estate holdings of Leucadia.

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Fairfield Inn Hotel Proposed for East Village Site

Developers are proposing a new 154-room Fairfield Inn & Suites hotel, planned for a site in East Village, according to documents filed with Civic San Diego, the city’s downtown project oversight agency.

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San Diego County Construction Contracts Dropped Sharply From 2013

Contracts awarded in January for future construction in San Diego County were down 78 percent from the first month of 2013, according to new data from McGraw-Hill Construction.

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Civic San Diego Names Phillips as Interim President

Civic San Diego, the non-profit agency overseeing projects in downtown and other city neighborhoods, has appointed Andrew Phillips to serve as interim president, following the recently announced departure of Jeff Graham.

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Civic San Diego Names Andrew Phillips Interim President

Civic San Diego, the non-profit agency overseeing projects in downtown and other city neighborhoods, has appointed Andrew Phillips to serve as interim president, following the recently announced departure of Jeff Graham.

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154-Room Hotel Proposed for East Village Site

Developers are proposing a new 154-room Fairfield Inn & Suites hotel, planned for a site in East Village, according to documents filed with Civic San Diego, the city’s downtown project oversight agency.

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County’s January Construction Contracts Dropped Sharply from 2013

Contracts awarded in January for future construction in San Diego County were down 78 percent from the first month of 2013, according to new data from McGraw-Hill Construction.

Hotel Market Expected to Continue Drawing Buyers, Investors

PROPERTY: Suburban And Business-Oriented Properties Are Sought

Experts say San Diego County, like the rest of the state, should continue to see rising demand for hotel real estate in 2014, sparked by an improving tourism climate, ample sources of investment capital and interest rates that remain historically low.

Sudberry Finds Retail Fit for Scripps Ranch

PROPERTY: Company Bringing Whole Foods as Part of Mixed-Use Project

Sudberry Properties has landed Whole Foods Market as the first anchor tenant for The Watermark, one of two commercial developments that it has in the works in San Diego’s Scripps Ranch neighborhood.

Ideas Brewing for Exhibit at Fairgrounds

Tourism: Operators Looking To Feature Craft Beer Industry

Officials are examining ways to turn San Diego County’s burgeoning craft beer industry, which racked up more than $780 million in 2013 sales, into a year-round attraction at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

Loans on Escondido Apartments Get $37.5 Million Refinancing

Maryland-based Walker & Dunlop Inc. has provided approximately $37.5 million in loan refinancing for Latitude 33 Apartments, a new 198-unit multifamily community in Escondido developed by Lyon Communities of Newport Beach.

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El Cajon Retail Center Sells for $5.3 Million

MDA El Cajon One LLC of Rancho Santa Fe has purchased the El Cajon Towne Center retail property for approximately $5.3 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

Prebys Trust Buys Santee Land Parcels for $36 Million

Conrad Prebys Trust of San Diego has acquired two undeveloped Santee land parcels, totaling approximately 33 acres, for $36 million, according to CoStar Group and public data.

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Westin San Diego Completes $15 Million Renovation

Operators of downtown’s Westin San Diego have completed a $15 million renovation, including upgrades to the hotel’s 436 guest rooms.

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ROIC Posts Gains in Revenue, Income for Q4, 2013

San Diego-based Retail Opportunity Investments Corp., also known as ROIC, reported revenue and net income up significantly from a year go for its fourth quarter and full-year 2013.

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SR Commercial Buys Industrial, Office Properties for $6 Million

SR Commercial of Solana Beach has bought an Escondido retail-industrial property and a Murrieta office building for $6 million.

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Shea Homes Buys 17 Lots in Carlsbad for $6.15 Million

The San Diego regional office of Shea Homes has purchased 17 land lots in Carlsbad for $6.15 million, according to brokerage company Lee & Associates, which represented the seller.

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Carlsbad Apartment Complex Sells for $6 Million

PUR Villas Carlsbad LLC has purchased the 24-unit Villas La Costa apartment property in Carlsbad for approximately $6 million, according to brokerage company Marcus & Millichap Inc., which represented the buyer and seller.

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Bridge Just Part of More Business Links Expected With Mexico

“I’ve always told people that I had a bridge to sell them,” billionaire investor Sam Zell quipped during a recent real estate conference in San Diego. “Now I’ve actually got a … bridge.”

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New Version of LEED Adds Incentives for More Sustainability

ENERGY: Construction Materials, Supplies Added To Certification Equation

The national certification program that rewards green building construction is undergoing its own renovation, and California regions including San Diego County are expected to remain on the forefront of compliance with new reporting standards. The nonprofit U

Signatures OK’d On Linkage Fee Ballot Measure

The San Diego County Registrar’s Office has verified 53,107 signatures gathered by opponents of a hike in commercial developer linkage fees recently approved by San Diego City Council. The issue will now go on the June 3 special election ballot unless the City Council votes to rescind the increase.

SoCal’s Multifamily Market Brings Co. to S.D.

PROPERTY: Richman Plans to Take Advantage Of Infill in Good Markets

Connecticut-based developer The Richman Group of Cos. is staking its claim in the West Coast apartment market by establishing its California base in San Diego, continuing its westward push of the past three years.

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Food Truck Number Spurs Reservations

Dining: New Rules Proposed To Regulate Mobile Eateries

Food truck operator Jay Margolin doesn’t like the idea of limiting where his loyal followers can find his New York on Rye, which has served East Coast-style deli food at office parks, festivals and other venues throughout the local region for the past three years.

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Carlsbad Apartment Property Sells for $6 Million

PUR Villas Carlsbad LLC has purchased the 24-unit Villas La Costa apartment property in Carlsbad for approximately $6 million, according to brokerage company Marcus & Millichap Inc., which represented the buyer and seller.

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Shea Homes Buys 17 Carlsbad Lots for $6.15 Million

The San Diego regional office of Shea Homes has purchased 17 land lots in Carlsbad for $6.15 million, according to brokerage company Lee & Associates, which represented the seller.