2019 Real Estate Treks Provide Insight and Community

The Steers Center’s real estate treks aim to provide students with the most comprehensive domestic and global experience. Equipping our undergraduate and MBA students with the practical wherewithal to be influential industry leaders near and far is a cornerstone of these five-day excursions.

Most recently, a select group of first-year MBA students flew to San Francisco for site visits with Invesco, Tishman Speyer, Salesforce, Prospect Hill Group, as well as a tour of the $1.4B development of the Chase Center in the city’s Mission Bay neighborhood. Walking the 900,000 square foot development proved to be a trip highlight, as Steers Center students received a guided first-hand look at what is currently San Francisco’s largest-issued building permit ($780M).

Group photo of Steers Center students at a project in Washington DC.

A visit to Hines’ and Invesco’s 33 Tehama building, a luxury multifamily asset in the city’s SoMa district, provided students with an in-depth look at how dynamic neighborhood changes open up the doors for residential development. 33 Tehama is a key cog in San Francisco’s Transit Center District Plan to increase residential-use in the city’s center. With rents for one-bedroom apartments falling north of $4,000 per month and a host of other luxurious amenities, 33 Tehama is the residential nucleus of the SoMa district. Chad Provost, Director of Portfolio Management at Invesco and a 2013 MBA alum, greeted the students on-site.

Opportunities for site visits are available to undergraduate students, as well. A short train ride up to Philadelphia allowed those in the Real Estate Club (GUREC) to gain insight from leaders at Pearl Properties, Alterra Properties, and CenterSquare Investment Management. Jim Pearlstein (C’90) of Pearl Properties gave students a sneak peek at his new luxury apartment building, The Harper on Rittenhouse, which offers sweeping views of Philadelphia and an unparalleled 13,000 square feet of luxury amenities. Matt Pfeiffer (B’07) of Alterra Properties provided GUREC members with civic insight regarding affordable housing legislation and its effects on city development. Robert Holuba (MBA’11) of CenterSquare Investment Management discussed with students how his group is at the spear’s tip of of identifying retail spaces which resist the negative impacts of e-commerce on brick-and-mortar. GUREC members returned to Georgetown with a robust understanding of the wide reaches of real estate development and asset management. Next up for GUREC is the career trek to New York City on April 5th, where students will have the opportunity to visit with firms such as Morgan Stanley and BAML.

Group photo of steers center students at Pearl Properties

Over spring break, MBA students also crossed the Atlantic for their annual trek to London. While in the UK, students were treated to a tour of the Olympic Village by Lesley Chen Davison (B’96) of Delancey along with an inside look at Bicester Village, an outdoor luxury retail concept. Students stayed in The Dixon, a new Marriott-owned hotel which was developed within the historic Tower Bridge Magistrates’ Court building. Their first day was spent walking through the city’s most well-known neighborhoods, such as Shoreditch, Mayfair, Covent Garden, and Southwerk. A visit with Catalyst Capital provided students with an examination of Slough Town Centre’s redevelopment. Slough is a London suburb of 160,000 just under twenty miles west of the city where Steers Center students performed highest and best use analyses on several underperforming assets. Evenings were spent enjoying the diverse cultural and culinary offerings of London, and students returned to DC in time to resume classes and begin the final push toward exams.