Lend Lease launches new $500 million global fund Atlanta-based Lend Lease Real Estate Investments recently launched its Lend Lease Global Properties SICAF (Global Properties), a Luxembourg-based global real estate opportunity investment company. The company already has commitments from U.S. pension funds, bank affiliates and overseas institutional investors, as well as a coinvestment of $50 million from Lend Lease. The fund is targeting markets in Europe, Latin America and Asia and expects to receive further commitments from additional institutional investors during the next three months.

According to James Quille, chairman of Lend Lease Global Properties, the fund has more than $500 million ready to invest. Already the fund has invested in an office campus development with Tishman International, located four miles north of Heathrow Airport in London.

Hines completes first phase of Mexican industrial park Recently Houston-based Hines completed the first phase of its newest industrial park in Mexico, Parque Industrial Tecnologico. The park is located on 25 acres of land in Guadalajara, Mexico. When completed in about two years, the park will include more than 700,000 sq. ft. of Class-A warehouse, manufacturing and distribution space in four buildings.

Hines also is developing the 750-acre Parque Industrial Queretaro in Queretaro.

Istanbul's new signature tower dominates skyline Construction is complete on a 21-story office tower in Istanbul, Turkey, creating a dominating presence on this city's skyline. The tower was developed by Korkmaz Yigit, one of the country's largest developers. The project was designed by Sandy & Babcock International.

Bank Ekspres, one of Turkey's largest banks, is using the new tower as its headquarters. The building was designed to have separate entrances in the front for banking customers and in the rear for corporate access.

Latins eyeing South Florida says Sonnenblick-Goldman Investors in Latin America will continue sizing up the South Florida commercial real estate market, according to New York-based Sonnenblick-Goldman, an independent real estate investment banking firm. Why? High occupancy levels and continued rental rate growth, says Manuel de Zarraga, Sonnenblick-Goldman's managing director based in Miami. Although the Brazilian market crisis will negatively impact the South Florida market this summer, de Zarraga predicts the market will continue to evolve with a highly diversified economy and increasingly becoming a serious participant in the South American economy.

In the past 18 months, Sonnenblick-Goldman has completed about $1 billion of real estate investment sales and financing in South Florida.

European hotels up, Asia down says Jones Lang LaSalle report Hotel investment in Europe continues to look upbeat, while Asian prospects continue to flounder, according to the new International Hotel Property Digest published by Chicago-based Jones Lang LaSalle. "The Digest is a first for us at Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, and we believe it will be extremely valuable to the industry," says Doug Hercher, managing director.

The Digest profiles European and Asian markets. London is a European standout with sound long-term fundamentals, while Paris and Barcelona are both improving steadily. In Asia, Hercher notes that these economies will have to wait until at least 2000 before economic revitalization is realized.

Major Caribbean developer appoints CB Richard Ellis for new tower Dominican Republic-based Renaissance Development has tapped CB Richard Ellis' Latin American and Caribbean office in Miami to lease and sell the new Citibank Tower at the Acropolis Center in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The 281,000 sq. ft. tower is now under development, and is available for purchase in condominium and for mid- and long-term leases.

Overall, the project brings the latest in design and technology to Caribbean office development. The tower was designed by Chicago-based VOA Architects and was financed by Bank of Nova Scotia.