Great Lakes Marina Sale
Pending environmental and financial due diligence, the transaction should close within 90 days, according to Stan Johnson, managing partner of Marinas International. He said the Texas-based company has no intention of making any significant staffing or operational changes to the marina, but it will implement an aggressive expansion plan.
Longtime owners George Bailey and John Bultema II will continue to own and operate an onsite dock manufacturing business and will partner in the development of the acreage commonly known as the marina’s “outer end.”
“We typically try to acquire what we feel to be the best marina in a given area, and we are very reluctant to make any changes,” Johnson said. “
All together, the Great Lakes Marina property contains an estimated 43 acres on
Initial plans for the remaining, currently undeveloped, acreage include a large-scale, mixed-use development and a long-overdue expansion of the marina. Great Lakes Marina has operated at 100-percent occupancy for several years. The potential addition of up to 400 new slips would make it by far the largest marina in
Johnson said the venture will partner with land-based developers to attract commercial and residential interests for the property. Tentatively, this could include luxury homes and condominiums that would allow deep-water yacht owners to park their vessels adjacent to their homes.
“Obviously, you have deep water there where they used to bring in the barges,” said Johnson. “There will probably be some larger slips to accommodate some of the bigger boats.”
Bailey and Bultema declined to comment on the record, citing a confidentiality agreement in place until the purchase agreement is finalized. Bultema, who is landlord to many of the retailers on
The investment could be the turning point for development in the surrounding Lakeside Business District, which is slowly building on the popularity of the
“I think it would make the whole thing just blossom,” said Chris Jensen, president of the 38-member Lakeside Business Association and proprietor of Cracker’s, a restaurant, catering company and gift shop at
David Medendorp, a Realtor with Exit Realty of Muskegon and property owner in the
“I think it will reach its tipping point in the next 24 months. It’s going to happen just like it did in downtown
Following the loss of a handful of key businesses this year — including a movie theater and gas station — the Lakeside District welcomed five new businesses. With seasonal operations opening their doors this month, the district and its association are gearing up for a busy summer. Its signature event is May 12: the annual Spring Into Lakeside fair.
The Lakeside Streetscape Master Plan, created pro bono by
Lake Express President Ken Szallai recently said that the character of the buildings could be a reason the ferry has had less of an impact than originally expected, citing the success of an upscale mixed-use development raised by Ghezzi’s Market proprietor Dick Ghezzi on Lakeshore Drive.
“We’ve looked very hard at the impact since we started, and we are seeing things happening,” said Kay Collins,
Collins said that
“This is definitely a business neighborhood in transition,” said Cindy Larsen, president of the Muskegon Area Chamber of Commerce. “There is a lot of opportunity there for people who know how to cater to the tourism market … and it is only just being discovered. People are starting to understand that it can be a destination, and there are destination businesses located there.”
This is the second transaction this year between Marinas International and CNL Income Properties, a trust created to acquire properties and lease them on a long-term, triple-net basis by CNL Financial Group Inc., the $19 billion Orlando-based real estate conglomerate. Earlier in the year, CNL acquired five properties from Marinas International for $69.4 million, including the Sandusky Harbor Marina near the Cedar Point amusement park in
At the time, Marshall Funk, also managing partner of Marinas International, said the relationship would allow his firm to “aggressively expand our portfolio of marinas through both acquisition and third-party management contracts.”
If the Great Lakes Marina acquisition is completed, it will be Marinas International’s first acquisition in
“We have looked at other marinas in both eastern and western
This is also believed to be CNL Income Properties’ first entry to the