‘Most Luxurious’ Condo in Houston Gets Financing

Transwestern sees major opportunity in Houston's white-hot condo market.
Michael Snodgrass

Michael Snodgrass

By Keith Loria, Contributing Editor

Transwestern has arranged construction financing for the Arabella, a 33-story luxury condominium tower in Houston on behalf of developer, Randall Davis of D.C. Partners.

“The Arabella will be one of the most luxurious residential towers in the city,” Michael Snodgrass, Transwestern’s managing director, structured finance, told Commercial Property Executive. “Some of the residences will have private elevator entrances and private swimming pools on the balconies. The penthouses will have 12-foot ceilings and heated floors in the master bathrooms.”

Arabella’s financing structure was comprised of numerous tranches of capital, including a first lien construction loan, mezzanine construction loan and multiple EB-5 investors, along with local and international equity partners.

When completed, the Arabella will consist of 99 residences, including penthouses with private swimming pools on the upper floors and a variety of floor plans, most with private elevator entries.

“Houston’s condo market is inadequate for the high demand we’ve seen lately. When you look at upscale, high-rise condo towers in cities like Dallas, Atlanta and Chicago, by comparison Houston has very little luxury condos being developed,” Jan Sparks, Transwestern’s managing director, told CPE. “We are going through an urbanization phase to catch up with those cities as Houston becomes more of an international city where urban high-rise living is more appealing.”

The Arabella is located between the Galleria and River Oaks, and it’s within walking distance to the newly completed mixed-use River Oaks District, which has numerous shops, restaurants and a movie theater.

According to Sparks, right now, if someone is in the market for a new high-rise condo in the Galleria that they can move into in the next year, there’s very little inventory and even secondary market re-sales have limited inventory.

“The Belfiore and Astoria, which are the only luxury condo towers in the Galleria, are nearly sold out,” she said. “All other projects are just now breaking ground, meaning they won’t deliver until 2017.”

The Arabella is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2017.