Breakers $350 million sale shatters record


Breakers sale shatters record.

Breakers Resort sells for $350 million.

Koelbel, developer of the Breakers, keeps a minority interest in apartment community.


Breakers Resort sale of $350 million shatters previous record by $95 million.

The Breakers Resort, the first of a new breed of apartment communities in Denver that kicked off resort-quality rental living in the metro area almost three decades

ago, has been sold for a record price of about $350 million.

Denver-based Koelbel and Co., the original developer of the 1,523-unit community on 190 acres on a private lake, retains a minority interest.

”The sale of the Breakers is among the highest in the United States for multi-housing in 2016, second only to a sale in Manhattan,” said Jeff Hawks, of the Denver office of ARA Newmark, which listed, marketed and sold the property.

Only the $390 million sale of the 311-unit Rivertower at Sutton Place in Manhattan exceeds the Breakers in multifamily transactions so far this year, according to ARA’s research.

“Sixteen years ago, large, national investment groups would not have invested even $100 million in Denver,” Hawks said.

“Today, the city has truly captured the attention of these investors and is now competing with coastal markets,” Hawks continued

“In fact, we received over 20 offers, and the key was finding a buyer who thoroughly understood the future opportunity and the operations of the property,” he said

He said he was amazed that a Denver apartment community attracted so much attention from investors.

“It really is a feather in Denver’s cap that there was so much institutional interest in it at that price range,” Hawks said.

Hawks believes the Breakers is one of the 10 largest apartment communities in the U.S.

The sale tops the previous record of $255 million for the Horizons at Rock Creek that sold last year in Superior. That deal also was brokered by ARA Newmark.

The buyers, Miami-based Pensam Residential and its partners, BH Equities LLC and Wafra Capital Partners, paid $228,809 per unit for the Breakers.

While technically below the replacement cost, it is not possible to say how much it would cost to duplicate the Breakers today, Hawks explained.

“It would be impossible to do it today,” Hawks said.

“A community of that size, in that location in the heart of the city, with those kind of clubhouse amenities on a private lake, would be so expensive that you just couldn’t do it,” Hawks said.

“So my answer to whether they bought it below replacement cost is N.A.”

The Bascom Group, the majority owner of the Breakers, initially was developed by Koelbel and Co. and Al Feld. Bascom bought out Feld’s interest about a decade ago, when it paid $190.5 million for the Breakers.

Koelbel will remain involved in the future of the community as a minority owner.

“We are delighted that Koelbel and Co., original co-developer of The Breakers beginning in 1989, will remain a minority partner with continued input on the strategic vision for the future of the community,” said Michael Stein, founding partner of Pensam Residential.

“This is a truly unique opportunity to build value through unique amenity and service offerings like those of no other apartment community,” added Harry Bookey, founder and CEO of BH Equities LLC.

“Koelbel and Co. has always prided itself on a long term vision of legacy communities that add to and enhance the fabric of where we live,” said Walter A. ‘Buz’ Koelbel Jr., president of his namesake, family-owned company.

“Continuing our 26-year involvement with a community as unique as The Breakers certainly captures our philosophical approach,” Koelbel said.

Pensam Residential and BH Equities have identified an opportunity for substantial value creation through modernizing and enhancing the amenities at the property. In order to accomplish these rehabilitation efforts, the companies will implement a sizable capital improvement program to include re-purposing of several individual community clubhouses as well as a complete retrofit of the Catamaran Club, Riviera Cafe, and the Marina.

“The Breakers occupies a prime infill location in a Millennial-driven submarket and buyer activity was greatly increased due to the property being a prime candidate for a value-add strategy,” said Terrance Hunt of ARA Newmark.

“The Breakers is simply unmatched in its size, scope and standing as the only community with a private lake and virtually endless amenities,” Hunt said.

Berkadia handled the Freddie Mac finding for The Breakers.

Have a story idea or real estate tip? Contact John Rebchook at is sponsored by 8z Real Estate. To read more articles by John Rebchook, subscribe to the Colorado Real Estate Journal.




Share Button

John Rebchook

John Rebchook has more than 30 years of experience in writing and communications. As the Real Estate Editor for the Rocky Mountain News, he wrote about residential and commercial real estate for 26 years. He has won numerous awards for business stories and columns that he wrote, both as an individual and part of teams. In addition to real estate, he also covered economic development, banking and financing, the airlines, and cable TV for the Rocky. In addition, he was one of the original freelance writers for, covering commercial real estate for the Internet publication.

More Posts - Website

Thank you to our sponsor

Our sponsor has made it possible to bring you this real estate resource for free. Please drop them a note and say thank you, and keep them in mind for your real estate needs.

Copy Protected by Tech Tips's CopyProtect Wordpress Blogs.