BLP advises on £323m financing of London’s answer to Times Square

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has advised Blackstone Real Estate Debt Strategies (BREDS) on providing a £323m loan to refinance existing debt, facilitate a corporate reorganisation and develop St Giles Circus, a cutting edge mixed-use project in the heart of London’s West End. The financing has been structured as separate senior and mezzanine facilities, to allow flexibility on syndication and leveraging.

St Giles Circus is being developed on a prominent 1-acre site at Tottenham Court Road next to the new Crossrail station, between Centre Point and Denmark Street. The borrower won planning consent last year for a 17,001m2 scheme, which delivers two new buildings. The new development includes a boutique hotel, restaurant and bar in one building and the other features a curated events space with the latest digital ‘Outernet’ screen technology plus an 800-seat underground venue. The development also includes rented residential and affordable housing both on and off the main site.

Naveen Vijh, Head of Real Estate Finance, BLP said: “We are pleased to have been given the opportunity to advise BREDS in relation to this high profile transaction, reinforcing our position as a leader in the real estate finance field. This is without doubt the most talked about real estate finance deal of the year and certainly the most significant both in terms of the critical importance of the site and its historic significance to London.”

The transaction involved a cross-departmental BLP team working closely together in order to advise on what was a complicated development financing project. The finance structuring, corporate group, planning, construction and real estate aspects all required innovative thought and collaboration across workgroups in order to achieve a satisfactory result for our client.

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