The Real Deal Miami

Via Mizner development closes $400M in financing

Deal includes $318M from Mack Real Estate Credit Strategies, $80M from US Immigration Fund

Via Mizner, Frank Weed and Faisal Ashraf

Penn-Florida Companies just closed on nearly $400 million in financing for Via Mizner, a mixed-use project in Boca Raton.

New York-based Mack Real Estate Credit Strategies is the lead lender, providing $318 million for the development, said Faisal Ashraf, founder and CEO of Lotus Capital Partners. Lotus arranged the financing package, a deal that took about six months. The remaining $80 million was provided by the U.S. Immigration Fund, an EB-5 lender.

Overall, Via Mizner will span 2 million square feet with a 366-unit luxury apartment building, an 88-unit condo, a 164-key Mandarin Oriental Hotel & Resort and 60,000 square feet of retail in downtown Boca Raton.

The financing deal, which marks the largest in South Florida so far this year, includes a refinance of the rentals, 101 Via Mizner Luxury Apartments, a construction loan for the hotel, and a bridge loan for the condo site. Lotus will go to market for a separate construction loan for the condos later this year in the low $100 million range, Frank Weed, vice president of development for Penn-Florida, said.

Ashraf arranged the financing with Lotus’ Arvind Pai, Jesse Blieberg and Spencer Correnti. Lotus and Penn-Florida declined to discuss terms of the deal, but Ashraf said Lotus received interest from banks, debt funds and money management firms, including three offers from qualified lenders with about $1 billion of capital.

Mack, a New York-based lending firm, offered bank-style financing with great terms, Ashraf said. “Our challenge was to achieve something of this size and complexity.”

The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, at 105 East Camino Real, is about 20 percent reserved. The condo component will be linked to the hotel by a two-story underground parking garage and a bridge on the fourth and fifth levels with a spa, gym, fitness center and meeting space. The hotel will be completed toward the end of 2019, and the residences will follow a few months later in 2020.

Condo owners will also receive membership to the Via Mizner Golf & City Club, which golf champion Jack Nicklaus is designing.