By Meghan Hall
South Lake Union has not only become a prime spot for investors to put their dollars into Seattle’s office market, but its residential market, as well. The Orion SLU Apartments, previously known as Block 47 Apartments, has traded hands for nearly $69 million, or about $535,000 per unit, according to King County property records. Vulcan sold the 129-unit complex to Vancouver, Canada-based Belkorp. The transaction closed today, November 12th.
Institutional Property Advisors brokered the transaction with a team led by Giovanni Napoli and Philip Assouad.
Built in 2018, the complex—whose slogan is “Smart. Small. Stylish.”— features a mix of studio, one-bedroom, one-bedroom loft, two-bedroom and two-bedroom loft units which range in size from 743 square feet to 1,011 square feet. Rents for the units, according to the apartment’s website, range from $3,220 per month to $3,960 per month. The units all come equipped with quartz countertops, stainless steel appliances, tile backsplashes and custom built-in closets. Some units also have patios.
“Orion is a boutique apartment community that commanded strong interest from the institutional investment market,” said Ada M. Healey, chief real estate officer for Vulcan Inc. “It truly is a jewel within South Lake Union as evidenced by its quick lease-up to stabilized occupancy in a very competitive market.
Community amenities include a rooftop deck and barbecue, pet friendly area, fitness center and seventh floor community lounge. Located at 910 John Street, the complex is also within walking distance from Amazon, Google, Facebook and dozens of coffee shops and local bars and eateries. It is also not far from the Museum of Pop Culture and the Cornish College for the Arts. The property itself also include 5,800 square feet of retail space.
The property is not Belkorp’s first purchase in Seattle; the firm owns a variety of multifamily assets throughout the region. It acquired the 120-unit Westview Village Seattle in 1991. Other acquisitions that it made during the 1990s include the 103-unit Hunter’s Run in Kirkland, The Eden, a 144-unit complex which Belkorp purchased in 1996, and Vista Ridge, which is 91 units and which Belkorp purchased in 1996. More recently, it purchased Six Oaks, a 203-unit complex in Bothell, in 2015.
The property is one of several that Vulcan has developed over the past several years in the Puget Sound. Currently, the firm is pursuing the development of Sitka, a 384-unit apartment community inspired by the San Juan Islands, as well as Helm, a luxury residential tower on Terry Avenue that will total 79 units and stand 15 stories upon completion. According to a statement issued by the firm, Vulcan intends to invest proceeds from the sale towards other land and value-add opportunities throughout the Puget Sound.