China Life takes $2B stake in Starwood Capital’s US hotels

Company will be lead investor in 280 hotels

From left: Yang Mingsheng and Barry Sternlicht
From left: Yang Mingsheng and Barry Sternlicht

UPDATED, Wednesday, Oct. 19 at 2:14 p.m. China Life Insurance purchased a $2 billion stake in Starwood Capital Group’s U.S. hotels.

After the sale, the Chinese sovereign wealth fund will be the leading investor in the 280 hotels across 40 states, Bloomberg reported. Starwood Capital Group will continue to serve as an asset manager on some of the properties.

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The deal comes as Chinese investors increasingly snap up commercial properties in the United States. For instance, Chinese insurer Anbang Insurance Group, which owns the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, purchased 16 hotels from the Blackstone Group this year for $6.5 billion. The deal closed in September. In August, China Orient Asset Management Corp. paid $143 million to buy a majority stake in four Flatiron District office buildings controlled by the Kaufman Organization.

In the first half of 2016, China-based investors pumped roughly $5 billion into commercial purchases in the U.S., a 19 percent year-over-year jump, according to the Wall Street Journal. [Bloomberg]Kathryn Brenzel

Correction: A previous version of this article claimed that China Life purchased a minority stake in One New York Plaza. It did not; China Investment Corp. bought a minority stake for $700 million.