By Jack Stubbs
As the Puget Sound region continues to expand, local investors continue to target unique development opportunities—and a transaction that was recently recorded demonstrates that this trend is set to continue.
On August 23rd, a 27-acre landmarked event center in Des Moines sold for $11.5 million, King County records show. The buyer, EPC Holdings 955 LLC, shares the same address in Sumner as Investco Financial Corporation (IFC), a company that manages assets in a private trust centered in real estate. The selling entity shares the same address as The Free Masons of Washington, a freemasonry fraternity based in University Place, WA.
The subject property, located at 23660 Marine View Drive S., includes a luxury establishment comprising nearly 118,000 square feet across five stories, according to a property listing written by Windermere Commercial. The larger property, which is referred to as “Landmark on the Sound” and spans 27 acres, was originally built as a luxury retirement center for the Free Masons of Washington, and has also served as a multipurpose venue for weddings and business events.
Surrounded by the iconic Olympic Mountains, Mount Rainier and the Puget Sound, the property has a formal 200-seat dining room, 200 residential rooms and a commercial kitchen. The focal point of Landmark on the Sound is the Grand Main Building, a 117,930 square foot building that was constructed in 1926. The property—which also includes shops, a 65,000 square foot healthcare wing built in 1966, a chapel, and various outbuildings—looks to capitalize on its geographical surroundings.
The property “provides unique development opportunities,” and also includes a circular drive, a central reflecting pond and formal gardens, “[which] provide a breathtaking entrance to this grand property,” the flyer states.
The property is roughly twelve miles south of Renton via I-5 and five miles west of Kent, and is also roughly two miles south of Sea-Tac Airport. The event center is also less than two miles from Highline Community College, and is also proximate to the in-progress Kent-Des Moines Light Rail Station, part of the larger 7.8-mile, three-station Federal Way Link Extension, which is set for completion in 2024, according to Sound Transit’s web site.
Upon completion, light-rail commuters will be able to travel from the Federal Way Transit Center to Sea-Tac Airport in 15 minutes and from the Kent/Des Moines station to downtown Seattle in under an hour. Sound Transit estimates a projected daily ridership of between 29,000 to 34,000 by 2026.
Founded in 1983, IFC operates business in manufacturing, distribution, home-building, winery operations, real estate asset management and property development construction and management services, according to the company’s web site. At time time of its founding, the company focuses on developing residential apartment communities, and soon after identified demand for industrial warehouses and distribution centers in Sumner, which led to the development of more than two million square feet at the Valley South Corporate Park.
In the late 1990s, the company expanded into the residential land development sector with the acquisition of Lakeland, a master-planned residential community that is now home to more than 10,000 residents. IFC has nearly 1,900 square feet of apartment, industrial, retail and residential land planned for future development.