NC Developer Enters LA Market With $23M Highland Park Purchase

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North Carolina-based Asana Partners purchased The Fig@Highland Park, a three-property mixed-use portfolio for $23 million and the company’s first purchase in the Los Angeles market.

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“This portfolio was attractive to the buyer because of the opportunity to buy a stable asset in a growing submarket of Los Angeles,” Dana Brody of JLL, who handled the sale on behalf of the seller, Engine Real Estate, a L.A.-based private investor, said in a release. Highland Park has become a hip neighborhood within Los Angeles with access to mass transit and proximity to major employment centers such as Downtown and Burbank.

Brody told Commercial Observer, the buildings were stabilized and the seller decided to to sell and move on to completing other projects.

JLL’s Geoff Tranchina represented the buyer. Asana will continue to operate the assets with a focus on undisclosed enhancements centered on the “customer and tenant experience,” he said.

The portfolio consists of four buildings amid the three lots, including 5900 North Figueroa Street and 111 South Avenue 59, a two-building multifamily and retail property. The main building, at 5900 North Figueroa Street, includes 12 well-maintained studios and one-bedroom apartments above 11,305 square feet of ground-floor retail. It includes a total of five retail spaces, which are 86 percent leased to two tenants, vegetarian eatery Kitchen Mouse (occupying three spaces) and Tinfoil Liquor, a trendy bodega. The adjacent smaller building, 111 South Avenue 59, is an iconic 4,167-square-foot bow-truss structure that is home to L.A.’s first outpost of Mr. Holmes Bakehouse, a San Francisco-born modern bakery.

Also in the portfolio is 5711 North Figueroa Street, a single-story, 2,250-square-foot retail building that is 100 percent leased to Sonomama, a high-end gift and apothecary shop, and Afters Ice Cream, an ice cream shop with outposts across Southern California and a strong social media following.

And, the properties also include 5715-5717 North Figueroa, a neighborhood landmark which is well known for its “Frank’s Camera” sign on its exterior.  The two-story building features 22,500 square feet of recently remodeled retail and commercial office space, which is 100 percent leased to six tenants. The basement is leased to LemonTree, an audio production facility and recording studio. The ground floor is occupied by Blind Barber, a barber shop with a speakeasy bar, Chops Market, a deli, and Otono Restaurant. The second floor consists of commercial office space, and is home to Pacific Union, a luxury residential real estate brokerage firm, and Arrive Enterprises, a hotel services management company.