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Illinois-based Inland Group acquired three parcels totaling 45.72 acres on E. Colonial Drive (highlighted in blue) that include the high-profile student housing community The Retreat at Orlando, located at 11037 Retreat Ave. The property, which opened in July 2014, was Orlando's first housing neighborhood built for college students.
Illinois-based Inland Group acquired three parcels totaling 45.72 acres on E. Colonial Drive (highlighted in blue) that include the high-profile student housing community The Retreat at Orlando, located at 11037 Retreat Ave. The property, which opened in July 2014, was Orlando's first housing neighborhood built for college students. (Orange County Property Appraiser)

In possibly the largest multi-family property sale this year in Orlando, an affiliate of Inland Group has paid $72.5 million for Landmark Properties' Retreat at Orlando, a gated subdivision on E. Colonial Drive with more than 200 cottage-style rental homes for college students.

It's the first student housing purchase in Orlando for Inland Group's Inland Private Capital. The company is now interested in more conventional multi-family assets in Greater Orlando to help diversify its Florida portfolio, a lead executive told GrowthSpotter.

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"UCF is one of the largest universities in the nation now, has a great growth pattern we think will continue, and this property differentiates itself from the competition because of the cottage housing, larger units and an amenity package we think is second to none," said Mark Cosenza, vice president of acquisitions for Inland Real Estate Acquisitions Inc., which acted as the purchasing arm on this deal for Inland Private Capital.

Inland Private Capital has owned multi-family property in Orlando in the past, but currently only owns developments in Jacksonville and Bradenton, after selling one earlier this year in Naples. Cosenza said Orlando could be a target for more acquisitions to boost the Illinois-based company's Florida presence.

A local LLC affiliate of Inland acquired the three parcels totaling 45.72 acres on E. Colonial Drive on Aug. 13, which are located about three miles south of the University of Central Florida campus.

Of that, 37.44 acres are home to the high-profile student housing community The Retreat at Orlando, located at 11037 Retreat Ave. That property, which opened in July 2014 with its 221 cottages and 894 bedrooms fully leased, was developed by Landmark Properties as Orlando's first housing neighborhood built for college students.

Landmark has developed more than 20 cottage-style housing neighborhoods for students in college markets across the country. The company acquired the E. Colonial Drive land in July 2013 for about $9 million.

Inland Private Capital acquired another 8.28 acres of undeveloped land on two small parcels as part of the deal. They neighbor The Retreat to its north, offering expansion opportunity for the development. Cosenza said Inland has no immediate plans to expand the community.

Prior to this sale, Unicorp's Casa Mirella apartment complex and Victoria Place Apartments near Waterford Lakes Town Center each sold for about $50 million within the past month, and were noted as the top multi-family property sales this year.

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at bmoser@growthspotter.com, (407) 420-5685 or @bobmoser333. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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