Area sells Upper Manhattan portfolio for $49M

By Zachary Kussin | February 15, 2013 07:00PM

UPDATED, Feb. 20, 12:50 p.m.: Area Property Partners has sold a portfolio of 10 Upper Manhattan multi-family properties known as the Decathlon portfolio for $49 million, or about $7.5 million less than the firm paid for the collection of buildings in 2007, according to records filed with the city today.

The buildings range from 961 St. Nicholas Avenue, a six-story, 56-unit property in Washington Heights — the southernmost point of the portfolio — to 248 Sherman Avenue, a five-story, 44-unit property in Inwood at the northernmost point. Altogether, the package encompasses a total of 474 prewar units in the Washington Heights and Inwood neighborhoods, with 116 of them renovated.

The buyer was identified in public record as the Queens-based Alma Realty, which declined to comment.

Brookfield Financial managing partners Ron Solarz and Eric Anton represented the seller in the deal, as The Real Deal previously reported. Solarz declined comment.

Area, along with the real estate investment trust Vantage Properties, purchased the portfolio from Chatham Realty Management for $57.5 million in 2007, as The Real Deal reported. (At the time, Area was known as Apollo Real Estate.)

However, lenders later sued to foreclose on Vantage. Dallas-based Lone Star Funds acquired the distressed loans in 2011 and filed a lawsuit last March, seeking more than $52 million over allegations that Vantage neglected to pay interest from May 2011 forward.

In the deeds, Vantage was not listed as a seller and appears to no longer be involved with the properties.

Calls to Area were not immediately returned. Vantage declined comment.

Earlier this month, Area took a loss at another Upper Manhattan property, selling a Hamilton Heights apartment building at 730 Riverside Drive for almost $18.2 million — about $2 million less than the purchase price in 2007.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article said that Ron Solarz and Eric Anton were Brookfield Properties managing partners. In fact, they are managing partners for Brookfield Financial.