BY RICHARD THOMPSON
The Shops at Canal Place, the high-end luxury shopping and entertainment center housed in the 32-story Canal Place complex near the foot of Canal Street, has been sold to a New York-based real estate firm.
O’Connor Capital Partners, a real estate investment, management and development firm, purchased the 260,000-square-foot shopping center from the New Orleans-based Berger Company and Ogden Development.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Brandon Berger, an owner and principal in his family’s commercial real estate development firm, declined to disclose the purchase price, citing a nondisclosure agreement.
The deal closed Wednesday.
The shopping center, which occupies three levels in the complex, is 96 percent occupied and is anchored by Saks Fifth Avenue. It also features a mix of high-end luxury retailers like Tiffany’s and Armani Collezioni, as well as national retailers like Brooks Brothers and J. Crew.
The sale also includes the shopping center’s nine-screen cinema, the Theatres at Canal Place.
The sale does not include the Westin New Orleans Canal Place hotel, the complex’s office tower or the adjacent 1,600-space parking garage, Berger said.
William O’Connor, president and CEO of O’Connor Capital Partners, said the deal “represented a rare opportunity to acquire a premier retail property with significant upside potential in a high barrier-to-entry market, in a prime tourist location with millions of tourists visiting annually.”
The firm plans to make capital improvements to the property and work toward leasing the available space, O’Connor Capital Partners said in an announcement.
The property benefits from being in a central spot that’s well-placed to draw tourists: close to the Mississippi riverfront, on the edge of the French Quarter and across Canal Street from Harrah’s New Orleans Casino.
Berger said the shopping center “is uniquely positioned in the entire central Gulf South region” and called it “the only luxury mall of its kind” in that area.
“It enjoys drawing from a customer base of not just locally, New Orleans and visiting tourists, but residents throughout the Gulf South,” he said.
Berger and Ogden have owned and managed the shopping center for 16 years. They will continue to own the parking garage.
Canal Place was built in 1979.