Mark Mueller

Senior Editor

Mark Mueller covers commercial and residential real estate for the Orange County Business Journal. His beat also includes title insurers and mortgage lenders, as well as government stories that relate to real estate. He can be reached at mueller@ocbj.com.

Email: mueller@ocbj.com
Phone: 949-833-8373 Extension: 226

Recent Stories

Shea Homes Buys Seal Beach Luxe Home Site

$36.6M for 30-Unit Waterfront Project

An 11-acre waterfront site in Seal Beach whose fate has been in limbo for well over a decade has new ownership that plans a high-end housing project on part of the property.

Dual Hotel-Office Project Proposed in Airport Area

REAL ESTATE: Backer of 9-story project has colorful history

A nine-story development featuring a boutique hotel and nearly 167,000 square feet of office space has been proposed for a vacant site on Jamboree Road in the John Wayne Airport area of Irvine, one of the largest commercial projects put forth there in recent years.

Monarch Beach Resort Loan Pegs Value at $466M

REAL ESTATE: $1.2 million per-room appraisal at high mark

The up-and-down valuation of the swanky Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point over its 17-year history has apparently hit a new high, based on documents related to a new loan for the 400-room resort.

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Jazz’s Newport Noise Isn’t Music to Developer’s Ears

Noise-Related Litigation Puts Big Lease in Question

Jazz Semiconductor Inc.’s operations in its longtime industrial facility in Newport Beach already have an agreed-upon expiration date of March 2027.

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Din Tai Fung Expands

Popular Taiwanese restaurant chain Din Tai Fung is expanding its only Orange County location, at South Coast Plaza shopping center in Costa Mesa.

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Bascom, Realm Pay $24.3 Million for LA Tower Site

33-story Project Would Be 1st in Fashion District

Two Orange County firms are part of the development team working on plans for a high-rise residential tower in the Fashion District of Los Angeles.

Builder Circles Back Home With Tustin Development

REAL ESTATE: Lennar’s Levity follows CalAtlantic land buy

Scott Stowell, the former executive chairman of Irvine-based CalAtlantic Group Inc. and chief executive of its predecessor company, Standard Pacific Corp., had a firsthand view of two of the homebuilding industry’s largest mergers and acquisitions in recent memory.

TRI Pointe Tapped For Downtown Anaheim Project

Irvine-based TRI Pointe Group Inc. has made its largest reported Orange County land deal in several years for a 232-home infill housing site in downtown Anaheim.

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Lincoln Property Adds Newport Office to Portfolio

7-Story Quail Street Office Goes for $32.1M

Newport Beach’s 1500 Quail Street, a seven-story office about a mile from the entrance to John Wayne Airport, has a new owner.

Hyatt Regency NB Gets Los Angeles Ownership

REAL ESTATE: 408-room, bay-area resort has ground lease

In the biggest hotel deal in Orange County in over a year, a Los Angeles-based investor has bought the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach.

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County Moves Ahead with $338M Dana Harbor Redo

5-0 Vote Could Lead to Retail Work Next Year

The long-awaited redevelopment of Dana Point Harbor could start as soon as next year, after the county signed off on a mixed-use project featuring three area developers.

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First 238 Homes at Corona’s Bedford Have OC Flavor

New Home Goes With TRI Pointe, Woodside

Orange County-based homebuilders make up two of three firms tapped to build the first batch of homes at Bedford, the first major residential development in Corona in more than 15 years.

Maui-Bound: Top OC Developers Invest in West

Recent Hotel, Retail Investments Near $1B

Fly about 2,500 miles west from John Wayne Airport to Maui, then drive half an hour to the resort area of Wailea, and you could be forgiven for thinking you’re still in Orange County when you notice the number of real estate investors and developers taking up shop.

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Chipotle’s Landing Spot: 2 Newport Center Floors

RESTAURANTS: Site prepped for 125 staffers at start

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. is poised to become Newport Beach’s most valuable public company immediately following its move here from Denver this year.

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SJC Exec Center Sold for $31.5M to Ensign Group

Senior Housing Operator Plans HQ Move in 2019

Ensign Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ENSG) has doubled up on office space next to the Santa Ana (5) Freeway at a property relatively near its Mission Viejo headquarters.

Anaheim Homebuilders Supplier Will List Stock

FINANCE: IPO on shelf; private shareholders to sell

Anaheim-based Select Interior Concepts Inc., installer and distributor of interior building products used in the residential and commercial real estate sectors, could soon see more than $350 million of its common stock traded for the first time on a public exchange.

5-Building Beckman Coulter Campus Sold

REAL ESTATE: Brea site goes to Hines & Oaktree

The local office of Houston-based real estate developer and investor Hines has added another sizeable property in North Orange County to its portfolio with the 34-acre office campus in Brea, which houses Beckman Coulter Inc.’s local operations.

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Sares Regis Preps First Torrance Site Project

REAL ESTATE: Old Toyota HQ getting industrial start

Sares Regis Group is starting to take the wraps off its plans to redevelop Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.’s former North American headquarters in Torrance.

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Luckey Landing: Tech Firm Plans Big HQ Move

Palmer Luckey’s new defense technology startup, Anduril Industries Inc., is preparing to take up a much more prominent position in Orange County, and appears poised for a major hiring push.

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Robinson Pharma Signs on for New Costa Mesa Site

To Lease 100,000-SF Harbor Gateway Building

An industrial building planned for the Harbor Gateway business park in Costa Mesa appears to already be spoken for.

AvalonBay Partners With Hines for Big Brea Project

653 Rentals Planned At Brea Place Campus

AvalonBay Communities Inc. plans to build its next area apartment development on the site of one of Brea’s largest office complexes.

Moshayedi Embarks On New Real Estate Ride

REAL ESTATE: Entrepreneur, Gallagher searching for buys

Mark Moshayedi, one of Orange County’s best-known tech entrepreneurs, coastal property owners, and classic-car collectors, has a new commercial real estate venture.

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ARES Adds Platinum Triangle Rentals for $100M+

REAL ESTATE: Anaheim portfolio now tops 1,500 units

Irvine-based apartments investor Advanced Real Estate Services Inc. has made its largest local acquisition in several years, picking up a rental complex near Angel Stadium in the Platinum Triangle area of Anaheim.

Diversification, Stability Equal Success

Homebuilder Has Lending, Tech, Commercial Arms

­To get an idea of the business acumen of Far West Industries and the Lissoy family, take a look at the Santa Ana-based homebuilder, developer and investor’s local operations during the Great Recession.

Singapore Investor Pays $42.5M for Irvine Center

1st Real Estate Buy in US For Newport Beach Unit

Three-building retail property Jamboree Promenade near John Wayne Airport in Irvine changed hands.

Long Beach’s Real Estate Reach Long

REAL ESTATE: Douglas Park hotspot for developers from OC

Orange County’s main hub of business might be the area around John Wayne Airport, but for several members of OC’s real estate development community, LGB has been the preferred destination over the past few years, not SNA.

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Lyon Lead for Next Great Park Homes Leg

REAL ESTATE: $166M land buy for homes starting at $350K

William Lyon Homes (NYSE: WLH) has been tapped to build one of the most unique home developments in Orange County in several years, a 536-unit project at Great Park Neighborhoods in Irvine with a large number of affordably priced homes.

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Premier Business Centers Tops in Co-Working in OC

REAL ESTATE: Bascom unit has 15 OC sites, 277K SF

Premier Business Centers doesn’t have the Wall Street buzz WeWork Inc. does or brand-new locations in some of Orange County’s recently built or redesigned office developments like some other co-working peers, such as Spaces.

Retail Center Near South Coast Plaza Sells for $46.5M

JH Real Estate Partners Swaps Rentals for Retail

Newport Beach-based JH Real Estate Partners Inc. recently added a big local property to its growing retail portfolio, a shopping center across the street from South Coast Plaza.

Santa Ana’s MainPlace Eyed for Big Makeover

REAL ESTATE: Apartments, offices, hotels proposed for site

The owners of MainPlace Mall in Santa Ana, Orange County’s ninth-largest shopping center by sales, have proposed an extensive overhaul of the roughly 50-acre property.

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CEO Unfazed By ‘No’ Vets Cemetery Vote

REAL ESTATE: Revised land plans one more tweak to site

FivePoint Communities Inc. Chief Executive Emile Haddad continues to strike a positive tone on the future of Great Park Neighborhoods in Irvine, despite an election loss that will result in another change in plans for part of the former El Toro Marine base.

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Irvine Office Projects Dominate OC Development

4M SF of New Ones Opened Here in Past Year

Orange County’s commercial development community was buoyed over the year ended April 30 by a surge of office openings, primarily in Irvine, the country’s biggest office market.

Construction Firms Report Solid Gains; 10-Year High

$9.1B in Commercial Work By Local Offices

Orange County’s largest commercial construction companies defied some worrisome regional trends to post their best revenue year in a decade.

Industrial Market Gets Infusion of Needed New Blood

Industrial Pipeline Biggest It Has Been Here in Years

There are signs of life for development in Orange County’s aging industrial market.

Busy Irvine Retail Center Eyes More Shops, Parking

23,000-SF Expansion On Tap for 1.7-Acre Site

The owners of the popular Diamond Jamboree shopping center in Irvine are proceeding with plans for a sizable addition to their project.

Panattoni Starts Latest Anaheim Industrial Project

REAL ESTATE: 4 buildings at Placentia city line planned

Panattoni Development Co., the most active industrial developer in Anaheim over the past decade, has started work on another project there, a multibuilding business park at the Placentia city line.

Intersect Redo Shapes Up With Shipping Containers

Restaurant, Bar, Chickens All Part of New Courtyard

Backed by a new financing deal and a flurry of recent leasing activity, the owners of the Intersect office campus in Irvine are almost finished with nearly $25 million worth of redevelopment work at the four-building project near John Wayne Airport.

5 Offices in Aliso Viejo’s Summit Sell for $150M+

REAL ESTATE: 1st direct OC investment for Rockpoint

A deep-pocketed Boston-based real estate investor has bought five offices in Aliso Viejo in what looks to be the priciest commercial property transaction in Orange County so far this year.

Fast-Growing Fintech Acorns Plots Big Growth

REAL ESTATE: New HQ to triple Irvine presence near UCI

Irvine-based Acorns Grow Inc., fresh off a $50 million funding deal headed by investment giant BlackRock Inc., plans to nearly triple the size of its local headquarters near the University of California-Irvine.

Co-Working Firm Latest Big Addition to Quad

REAL ESTATE: 102K SF for Spaces at 3 OC office locations

Orange County’s rapidly growing base of co-working spaces geared to smaller businesses is expanding to another prominent location at a nearly ready office campus in the Irvine Spectrum.

SchoolsFirst Credit Union Buys Office in Riverside

$25.4M Deal Comes Year After OC Group Buy

Santa Ana-based SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, the largest credit union in California, has added one of the most prominent office buildings in the Inland Empire market to its real estate portfolio.

Orange Offices Eyed for Rentals, For-Sale Homes

A seven-building office complex in Orange near MainPlace Mall in Santa Ana has been proposed as the site of a large residential complex featuring rental units and for-sale homes.

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Museum Site Project Plans Scaled Down

REAL ESTATE: Vivante senior homes on table for NB

Plans are under way to build a high-end senior living facility on the site of Orange County Museum of Art in Newport Beach, where the museum has been since the late 1970s.

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Irvine Co. Adds To Spectrum Mix

REAL ESTATE: 4th Thales building in landlord’s portfolio

Irvine Co. has bought one of the largest commercial properties in the Irvine Spectrum that it didn’t already own, an office used by the in-flight entertainment division of Thales USA Inc. for its domestic headquarters.

Newport Beach’s Newest Hotel Hub for RE Execs

Lido House Busy With OC Dealmakers

Looking to do a real estate deal and need a partner?

Tustin Legacy Mixed-Use Project Slimmed Down

REAL ESTATE: Blimp hangar now out of Brookfield plans

Plans for an ambitious mixed-use project at the Tustin Legacy development have been scaled back, with the city now planning to oversee reuse of one of the base’s two iconic blimp hangars rather than a private developer.

Costa Mesa’s Plaza Tower Gets Flurry of Leasing

REAL ESTATE: IBM renewal among largest deals this year

Plaza Tower, one of Costa Mesa’s best-known and swankiest offices, has experienced nearly 100,000 square feet of leasing activity from a variety of tenants over the past few weeks.

Lido Revival Continues With Projects Near Water

Slew of Development Revives Peninsula Area

When Lido House, Newport Beach’s first newly built hotel in a decade, held its grand opening ceremony last month, the property was given a blessing by the Rev. Canon Cindy Evans Voorhees of the neighboring St. James Episcopal Church.

Karma’s Old Costa Mesa HQ Sold, Getting Upgrades

2-Building Site Next To JWA Trades for $33.7M

Two industrial buildings in Costa Mesa next to John Wayne Airport, including the former headquarters of Karma Automotive, have traded hands for about $33.7 million.

Mobilitie's Next Moves

Telecom Firm Grows With Beer, Books, R.E.

As the founder of the largest telecommunications firm based in Orange County, Gary Jabara has been a mainstay on the Business Journal’s annual listing of the area’s most influential and prominent businesspeople for nearly a decade.

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