Bella Terra HB Mall
News Release - Bella Terra Huntington
Beach Mall August 2005
HUNTINGTON BEACH ' In the news for Huntington Beach, California:
San Jose-based DJM Capital Partners, along with a consortium of
investors, has announced it will purchase Bella Terra mall in Huntington
Beach. Long known as the Huntington Beach Mall or Huntington Center,
Bella Terra is being reconfigured as a $170 million open-air
entertainment, dining and shopping plaza that will feature a 20-screen
stadium movie theater, discount retailers such as Kohl's and Mervyn's,
and restaurants such as California Pizza and Islands.
D. John Miller is purchasing the the
43-acre, Tuscany-design mall from Huntington Center Associates, LLC, a
partnership between Calabasas-based Ezralow Retail Properties and other
investors who bought the land in 1999 and sought to build an upscale
rival to Fashion Island.
Existing discounters Burlington Coat Factory and Montgomery Ward wanted
in, and the City Council balked at using eminent domain to force them
out. Montgomery Ward went belly-up soon after, and the mall was retooled
to incorporate Burlington, but not without a huge campaign by Burlington
Coast Factory and its employees and managers located at the mall. For
months, Burlington Coat Factory Huntington Beach employees and even
shoppers attended Huntington Beach City Council meetings and spoke the
allotted 3 minutes each, stretching the council meetings into the wee
hours of the morning. Their impassioned pleas to let Burlington remain
were effective and today, many of those people are still in the store,
greeting customers, hanging up clothes and marking merchandise as it
DJM has assets of $600 million in
retail and residential complexes that include a La Habra mall. Bella
Terra, with nearly 800,000 square feet of shops, would be twice as large
as any of the company's previous acquisitions.
In July 2005, the new Bella Terra sales agreement eliminated $15 million
in subsidies that Huntington Beach had promised to pay the property
owner, using construction delays as the basis for removal.
Bella Terra Associates, LLC, the name of Miller's investment group,
didn't notice the subsidies had been eliminated until after signing the
sale agreement, according to , said Bob Beardsley, acting City
Adminstrator for Huntington Beach. The contract was re-negotiated and
the City agreed to pay $13.5 million.
Currently appraised at $43 million, the Bella Terra Huntington Beach
Mall leasing firm is CB Richard Ellis.