Westgate Resorts pays $5.5M for Orlando warehouses for new laundry hub plans

Westgate Resorts paid $5.5 million on Thursday to stay ahead of growing demand for industrial real estate, buying a dual-warehouse property for its own storage needs and a planned state-of-the-art laundry facility.

Located at 2216 Directors Row in Orlando Central Park, the 4.45-acre property features two Class-C warehouses that total 115,180 square feet, built in the early 1970s. 

The seller was an affiliate of Virginia-based Brown Distributing Company, a regional beer distributor which originally paid more than $2.92 million for the property in 2011. 

Currently vacant, Brown Distributing had marketed the buildings for 60 to 90 days via Justin Ruby of Foundry Commercial before Westgate brought it under contract, with the buyer represented by Brad Parker of Southern Realty Enterprises

"We'll be doing some roof work on the (new) property and will relocate a large segment of our purchasing and logistics office there. We should start work immediately and be ready by November," Westgate COO Mark Waltrip told GrowthSpotter

"What we're most excited about is we'll be building a centralized, state-of-the-art laundry system for all our resorts in Central Florida to process the 22 million pounds of laundry our (nine resorts) produce per year," he continued. "It can also do third-party laundry for other hotels. We've already ordered the new equipment." 

The warehouses have "great bones, an excellent location in the heart of Orlando Central Park, and 8,000 square feet of newly renovated offices which was really the amount of finish that was needed," Ruby said. "It also has a tremendous amount of (electrical power supply), so it was really a plug-and-play operation for the right user." 

Officials with Brown did not respond to requests for comment on Friday. No mortgage was recorded by Westgate in relation to the acquisition. 

Westgate Resorts owns two other warehouse properties in Orange County that supports its storage needs as the second largest hospitality provider in Central Florida, following Walt Disney World. The company has nine timeshare resort properties in the Orlando area, and 28 resorts across the United States. 

One of those is on a S.R. 50 intersection corner in Ocoee that Westgate is now exploring redevelopment of, potentially for retail and a parking garage that would serve its own call center next door, Waltrip said. 

Many of those properties feature Westgate's own branded restaurants and retail shops, including Edge Steakhouse, Drafts Sports Bar & Grill and Joe’s Marketplace & Deli.

The company bills itself as the largest private employer in Central Florida, with 6,200 local employees and 12,000 nationally. 

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