Real estate finance in United States

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

The New York-based team at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton is engaged in all major aspects of commercial real estate finance, including advising on secured loans for CMBS, mezzanine financing, construction and development loans and workouts. Kimberly Blacklow and Michael Weinberger, together with Joseph Lanzkron and Aron Zuckerman advised affiliates of Goldman Sachs, as lender, on almost $13bn of new loan originations. Practice head  Steven Wilner regularly represents financial institutions, corporations, and sovereign wealth funds, while Daniel Reynolds is go-to counsel on Brookfield Real Estate Finance Partners’ financings. 

Practice head(s):

Steven Wilner

Other key lawyers:

Kimberly Blacklow; Michael Weinberger; Joseph Lanzkron; Aron Zuckerman


‘This team has highly technical attorneys, an extensive knowledge management treasure trove and very commercial perspectives from both the lender and borrower perspective.’

‘Kimberley Blacklow’s technical expertise puts her at the top of any rankings on that issue and she is also able to distil the information in an easily digestible manner.’

‘Michael Weinberger has extensive experience on the lender side which has allowed him to be a trusted attorney for us on the borrower side as well.’

‘Aron Zuckerman is a younger partner whose knowledge far exceeds his years in the partnership.’

Key clients

AIG Investments


Argent Ventures

Banco Inbursa

Brookfield Asset Management

The Carlyle Group

Goldman Sachs

KSL Capital Partners


Monarch Alternative Capital

Morgan Stanley

Standard Chartered Bank

Work highlights

  • Represented Brookfield in its $465m refinancing of its landmark Gas Company Tower in downtown Los Angeles.
  • Represented Goldman Sachs, as lender, in a $905m senior and mezzanine financing of One SoHo Square, a 787,000-square-foot office and retail complex in Manhattan.
  • Represented The Carlyle Group in the debt and equity recapitalization of the Hudson Yards Observation Deck, including the $509m acquisition of the property by the joint venture led by KKR and the refinancing of a $391M mortgage loan.

Dechert LLP

Dechert LLP routinely represents major lenders in the market on their CMBS issuances, mortgage and mezzanine loans, and the acquisition and disposition of interests in such loans including through syndication, purchase and sale of participations and B-pieces. The practice also has a solid offering in distressed debt and restructuring. Co-chair David Forti, based in Philadelphia, is a leading figure, having held positions in the CRE Finance Council; he represents lenders, issuers and funds in mezzanine financing, loan sales and purchases, work-outs and foreclosures. Fellow co-chair Richard Jones is based in New York and specializes in capital markets and mortgage finance. In the same office, Laura Swihart acts for issuers, underwriters, mortgage loan sellers and subordinate bond buyers in connection with commercial mortgage backed securitization transactions. Other key attorneys include Stewart McQueen, managing partner in Charlotte, Ken Hackman, Matthew B Ginsburg, and Nitya Kumar Goyal in Philadelphia, who is experienced in loan participations, co-lender arrangements and credit tenant lease financing. Craig Brown joined the practice from Duval & Stachenfeld LLP in early 2021.

Practice head(s):

David Forti; Richard Jones; Laura Swihart

Other key lawyers:

Stewart McQueen; Ken Hackman; Matthew Ginsburg; Craig Brown; Nitya Kumar Goyal

Key clients

Bank of America Merrill Lynch


Bridge Debt Strategies

Cerberus Capital Management


Credit Suisse

Davidson Kempner Capital Management LP

Deutsche Bank

Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (“Freddie Mac”)

J.P. Morgan

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts

MF1 Capital

Wells Fargo

Work highlights

  • Represented Citi as lead mortgage lender in connection with the origination of over $6.04 bn of floating-rate debt to finance the acquisition by special purpose entity subsidiaries of Blackstone of 19 data center properties through a take-private acquisition of QTS Realty Trust.
  • Advised a major agricultural lender in connection with a $302.7m securitization of agricultural mortgage loans.
  • Advised MF1 REIT II LLC and certain of its affiliates, as sponsor, issuer, co-issuer, retention holder and collateral manager, in connection with the issuance and offering of 6 classes of notes to investors, and the issuance of 3 classes of notes and 1 class of preferred shares to be retained by an affiliate of MF1 REIT II LLC. The MF1 2021-FL7 transaction is largest CRE CLO ever with a target principal balance of $2.25bn.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP maintains a solid market reputation in all areas of real estate finance and distressed asset workouts. Department co-chair Jesse Sharf in Century City represents lenders, REITs, developers and investors in workouts, whole loan sales, construction lending, mezzanine and CMBS lending. Fellow co-chair Erin Rothfuss in San Francisco, and Kahlil Yearwood advise on all lending and structured finance, private equity and workouts, particularly in office buildings, hotels, and residential property developments. Eric Feuerstein in the New York office is another highly sought after specialist in financings, debt purchases and acquisitions, as is Noam Haberman, for working out individual loans and entire capital structures for both lenders and borrowers.  

Practice head(s):

Eric Feuerstein; Erin Rothfuss; Jesse Sharf

Other key lawyers:

Kahlil Yearwood; Noam Haberman

Key clients

Stockbridge Real Estate Funds

Hackman Capital Partners




KKR Real Estate Finance Manager

EOS Investors



Strategic Hotels & Resorts

Work highlights

  • Represented EOS Investors in the $88m acquisition of Bethany Beach Ocean Suites (Residence Inn) and Holiday Inn Express Bethany Beach in Bethany Beach, Delaware.
  • Advised Stockbridge in connection with an approximately $2bn acquisition and financing of a portfolio of 23 operating and under-development warehouse industrial properties comprising a 14.3 million square foot portfolio.
  • Advised longtime client and leading institutional investment firm, DivcoWest, in connection with a $1bn joint venture with Denver-based company, Atlas Real Estate, for the acquisition, renovation and operation of single family rental properties across the Western United States.

Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP

Historically dominant in the CMBS space, Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP continues to strengthen its expertise in syndicated, acquisition and construction lending, as well as loans backed by credit leases. Leading the practice from New York, Bonnie Neuman is a member of CREFC Women’s Network, and represents investment banks and investors across all facets of lending, in particularly in origination of mortgage and mezzanine loans, loan servicing, non-performing loan securitizations, and loan restructuring. Special counsel Nicholas Brandfon in the same office, is also of note. Also experienced in a wide variety of lending transitions, Holly Chamberlain in Charlotte is active in preferred equity investments in real estate joint ventures, unsecured real estate loans, single-family rental portfolios and workouts.   

Practice head(s):

Bonnie Neuman

Other key lawyers:

Nicholas Brandfon; Holly Chamberlain

Key clients

Arbor Commercial Mortgage LLC

Bank of America, N.A.

Citi Real Estate Funding Inc.

Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc.

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A.

Morgan Stanley Bank, N.A.

Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.


Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC

U.S. Bank National Association

Work highlights

  • Represented JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., Citi Real Estate Funding Inc., Morgan Stanley Bank, N.A. and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. as lenders in a $3.15bn single-asset, single-borrower (SASB) securitized mortgage loan, secured by the Aria Resort & Casino and Vdara Hotel and Spa.
  • Representing Deutsche Bank Securities Inc and other lenders in an approximately $1bn mortgage loan secured by a portfolio of 110 hotel properties and certain land and ancillary assets in connection with the approximately $1.5bn pending acquisition of CorePoint Lodging Inc.
  • Represented JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. as lender in a $414m securitized mortgage loan to finance the acquisition of One Memorial Drive, a Class A office building located on the Charles River in Cambridge, Massachusetts by MetLife Investment Management, the institutional asset management business of MetLife, Inc., and Norges Bank Investment Management, representing the largest single-asset U.S. office transaction to date in 2021.

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP‘s New York-based team, led by Michael Barker, maintains solid activity in first mortgage loans, construction financing, portfolio loans, mezzanine financings and loan restructuring. Having built up its real estate practice, Barker has established himself as a top advisor to the firms’ major clients, such as Blackstone, Starwood Property Trust and JPMorgan on all their lending transactions. Michael Vines specializes in advising syndicate and balance sheet lenders on development, construction, and transitional loans. Suzanne Decker, Nathaniel Lifschitz and Kabaye Liku are the other key partners for borrowers and lenders in mortgage, mezzanine, and preferred equity financings. Associate Matthew Bettinger also regularly counsels insurance companies and banks in construction financings.

Practice head(s):

Michael Barker

Other key lawyers:

Michael Vines; Suzanne Decker; Nathaniel Lifschitz; Kabaye Liku; Matthew Bettinger


‘Exceptionally broad bench and vast breadth and depth of experience within the firm.’

‘Michael Barker is outstanding; Michael is a wealth of knowledge on complex construction loans and a master negotiator.’

‘They have the capability to handle the most complex of transactions, and a large enough bench to get things done on an accelerated schedule if necessary.’

‘All the members of the team that I have interacted with have been excellent. Of particular note is Kabaye Liku, who has worked on several long-lasting deals of ours. She always makes herself available for follow-up questions and modifications, no matter that she has a very busy practice.’

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP

Led by Howard Schreiber in Dallas together with New York-based Laurie Grasso and Brett Gross, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP has been increasing its presence in acquisition, financing and development of affordable housing, and life sciences and health care sectors, parallel to its well-established commercial real estate lending and REIT practice. It is also highly knowledgeable on foreclosure on defaulted mortgage and mezzanine loans, deeds in lieu of foreclosure and the sale of REO properties. The practice also undertakes a significant amount of pro-bono work. Gross specializes in securitized and portfolio mortgage lending, mezzanine, construction and hospitality lending, and credit facilities, while New York-based Peter Mignone and Matthew Halal ‘s practice focuses on advises lenders and investor representation. Dallas’ key attorneys include Kathleen Wu, Kathleen Tarbox Muñoz and Raegan Watchman

Practice head(s):

Howard Schreiber; Laurie Grasso; Brett Gross

Other key lawyers:

Peter Mignone; Matt Halal; Kathleen Wu; Kathleen Tarbox Muñoz; Raegan Watchman


‘The lawyers are very responsive, very knowledgeable and very creative in finding solutions to possible issues. They guide the lenders and provide options for solutions without dictating what to do.’

‘Brett Gross is a partner but is always involved in deals. He never loses focus of the deals (even if he has more junior people working on them) and is always available to discuss loan points. He and his team are very responsive. ‘


Key clients

Beal Bank

Chatham Lodging Trust

Knighthead Funding, LLC

Tishman Speyer

Raith Capital Partners LLC

Work highlights

  • Represented CLMG Corp., as Agent for Beal Bank USA in numerous transactions around the United States valued over $500m.
  • Represented institutional lenders with the origination of a $415m mortgage loan refinance secured by one of the largest shopping malls in southern California.
  • Represented an institutional lender in connection with a $412.88m credit facility encumbering (initially) seven multifamily residential apartment buildings located in California, Texas, North Carolina, Massachusetts, Georgia and Pennsylvania.

Morrison Foerster

Morrison Foerster is recognized for its expert handling of large syndicated term and construction loans and with deals involving multiple types of debt, as well as its strong involvement in convertible mortgages, mezzanine or layered debt/equity structures, conduit loans and loans originated for securitization, in addition to its knowledge of EB-5 and bond financing. Outside of the core syndicated, participated, and CMBS loan arrangement practice, global department chair Mark Edelstein is the go-to lawyer for debt restructurings and bankruptcies of high-profile real estate companies and developers. US real estate co-chairs Jeffrey Temple and Thomas Fileti in New York and Los Angeles respectively are key attorneys for REIT work and credit facilities of all types. New York’s Christopher Delson and Lawrence Ceriello alongside Miami-based Keith Print are all highly recommended, alongside New York-based of counsel Tushna Gamadia, for securitized lending, balance sheet lending and syndicated loan transactions. 

Practice head(s):

Mark Edelstein; Thomas Fileti; Jeffrey Temple

Other key lawyers:

Christopher Delson; Lawrence Ceriello; Keith Print; Tushna Gamadia


‘The team has a deep expertise and they come with solutions to problems.’

‘Highly accessible professionals. Well versed in market conditions and practices.’

‘This practice is well known in the market, sees many type deals for all the various lenders they cover. While not sharing industry secrets, they are well versed. Also if you need to syndicate a deal, their involvement helps sell the deal and the quality of the deal.’

Key clients


Capital One

CIBC World Markets





Wells Fargo

GLP Pte. Ltd.

Goldman Sachs


Standard Chartered

Tishman Speyer

Work highlights

  • Represented Wells Fargo Bank as the lead in the $973m construction loan for the construction of Google’s new campus in Hudson Square in New York City.
  • Represented JPMorgan in a $550m construction loan for the Salesforce Tower Chicago.
  • Represented an insurance company in the origination of an approximately $430m first mortgage loan in connection with the acquisition by the borrower and its affiliates of a 14.3 million-square-foot logistics portfolio located across several states.

Eversheds Sutherland

Eversheds Sutherland‘ national practice maintains a spread of debt and equity transactional activity across every class of real estate asset; from construction and permanent mortgage loans, subordinate and mezzanine lending, A/B note structures and REIT work. A go-to for some of the firm’ most high profile clients, Washington DC-based co-chair Lisa Rosen works with portfolio lenders, commercial banks, CMBS master and special servicers, pension fund advisers, private equity funds. On the debt side, based in New York, co-head John Benson and John Busillo focus on securitized loans, affiliated debt products, and the resolution of non-performing or sub-performing real estate assets. Ellen Smith in Atlanta is also recommended for institutional debt and equity investment across all commercial real estate asset classes.

Practice head(s):

John Benson; Lisa Rosen

Other key lawyers:

John Busillo; Ellen Smith

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Greenberg Traurig, LLP acts on sophisticated commercial real estate loans and related credit facilities across all asset types with varying maturities and debt service coverage ratios. The practice is also active in restructuring of mortgage and mezzanine loans secured by interests in single or multiple property collateral pools, and is often seen representing purchasers of individual loans or pools of loans secured by real estate or interests in real estate and the resale, restructuring or exercise of remedies. Lenders, private equity funds, REITs, and institutional investors are particularly well represented in the firm’s client portfolio. In New York, co-chair Stephen Rabinowitz, Kristen Lonergan and Farah Ahmed have a balanced acquisition, development, financing practice. Michael Baum co-chairs the global real estate department from Chicago.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Rabinowitz; Michael Baum

Other key lawyers:

Kristen Lonergan; Farah Ahmed

Key clients

Adler Group

American Finance Trust, Inc.

Canada Life

Cindat USA LLC

Core Spaces

Davidson Kemper

Denihan Hospitality Group

Footprint Power LLC

GFI Capital

Hope Street Capital

Podium Developer LLC


SL Green Realty Corp.

Square Mile Capital Management LLC

Work highlights

  • Representation of a student accommodation provider in the acquisition and financing of a portfolio of 28 student housing assets across the country.
  • Advised a developer on a $124m construction loan obtained from Cerberus in connection with the construction and development of a multi use project located on Ann Street in Savannah, Georgia.
  • Advised a developer in the acquisition and senior and subordinated acquisition financing of the property located at 75 Canal Street West, Bronx NY, for purpose of the  development and construction of a new high school facility.

Jones Day

Jones Day‘s national real estate practice takes a lender-focused approach and is active across the whole spectrum of real estate financings, from construction to revolving and term loans, to mezzanine loans, CMBS loans, and tax-driven financings. On the borrower side, it is growing its portfolio with regular instructions from capital investors, hospitality owners, and private equity funds. Co-heads David Paulson and Richard Rosenblatt lead the bi-coastal practice from San Francisco and Atlanta, respectively. Additional noted attorneys include Michael Riess in Washington DC, who often leads on construction lending, syndicated and REIT financing, Gregory Carpenter in Irvine and John Rafkin in Chicago.

Practice head(s):

David Paulson; Richard Rosenblatt

Other key lawyers:

Michael Riess; John Rafkin; Gregory Carpenter

Key clients

Digital Bridge Holdings, LLC

Mill Creek Residential Trust LLC

Goldman Sachs Bank USA


Wells Fargo Bank, N. A.

Fifth Third Bank

Stonemont Financial Group

Webster Bank, N.A.

Greystar Real Estate Partners, LLC

Henderson Park Capital

U.S. Bank National Association

RBC Capital Markets

Bank of America Corp.

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Represented Wells Fargo Bank, National Association, as administrative agent, in connection with a $1.65bn unsecured credit facility, comprised of a $1.3bn revolving credit facility and a $350m term loan facility, provided to a self-administered real estate investment trust.
  • Advised Mill Creek Residential Trust LLC in deals comprised of 19 construction and term loans and a corporate credit facility.
  • Represented KeyBank National Association, as left lead arranger and administrative agent, in connection with a $1 billion sustainability-linked revolving credit facility provided by a syndicate of lenders to a publicly traded real estate investment trust.


Milbank is best known for its work in high-profile UCC foreclosures and distressed debt workouts involving CMBS and complex capital stacks. The practice is also active at the cutting edge of originating mezzanine debt that is subordinate to senior construction financing and, together with the project finance practice, is noted for its data center financing work. Gaming and hospitality sector real estate financing is another core area of expertise. Practice head Kevin O’Shea, Erwin Dweck and mortgages, mezzanine, and equity investments specialist Yaakov Sheinfeld are the key attorneys in New York.  

Practice head(s):

Kevin O’Shea

Other key lawyers:

Erwin Dweck; Yaakov Sheinfeld


‘Milbank’s real estate team is unique in their ability to creatively add value to our transactions and efficiently process work. I have not seen such a practical approach from other firms.’

‘Yaakov Sheinfeld is always the smartest and most articulate person in the room. He is unbelievably diligent. He has rare creativity and pragmatism. He’s been a true value-add to our business.’

Key clients




SLG / Green Loan Services




Work highlights

  • Represented an affiliate of Monroe Capital Management Advisors, LLC in connection with the foreclosure of its loan secured by joint-venture equity interests owned by affiliates of H F Z Capital Group, in a portfolio of industrial, manufacturing and distribution facilities across the United States.
  • Represented HPS Investment Partners as lender in connection with a mortgage loan and a mezzanine loan to 850 Third Avenue LLC, an affiliate of Chetrit Organization LLC.
  • Represented a joint venture in the refinancing of a construction loan to an affiliate of The Hudson Companies for a luxury condominium building located at One Clinton Street in Brooklyn Heights.

Arnold & Porter

Arnold & Porter co-head Steve Gliatta has deep experience advising on first mortgage loans, mezzanine financing, preferred equity investments and workouts. Louis Hait also acts for hedge funds, opportunity funds, and pension plans that provide mezzanine, preferred equity, and common equity joint venture investments. Washington DC-based co-head Amy Rifkind focuses on public-private partnerships, while Jeffrey Kapner is the other co-head. All partners are based in New York unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Steve Gliatta; Jeffrey Kapner; Amy Rifkind

Other key lawyers:

Louis Hait

Key clients

LoanCore Capital Credit LLC

Square Mile Capital Management LLC

Argentic Real Estate Finance LLC

Prime Finance Partners

KSL Capital

MUFG Union Bank

Société Générale

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

Credit Agricole

Deutsche Bank

Criterion Real Estate Capital LLC

Blackstone Real Estate Services LLC

Work highlights

  • Represented Credit Agricole in connection with a refinance of a leasehold interest in a mixed-use property which consists of 129 apartment units, 15,858 square feet of retail and 48 below grade parking spaces, is known as 13U Apartments and is located at 1310 U Street, in Washington, DC.
  • Represented Criterion Real Estate Capital in its preferred equity investment in connection with the acquisition, construction and development of a residential condominium project in Tysons, Virginia.
  • Advising Square Mile Capital in connection with a $205 million mortgage and mezzanine construction financing provided to Silverstein Properties and Taconic Partner for Hudson Research Center, a 322,000-square-foot, mixed-use property located in New York.

Ballard Spahr LLP

From Baltimore, Ballard Spahr LLP‘s practice-co-head Thomas Hauser counsels lenders, investors, borrowers, and other sources of capital in various financing structures and and restructuring of real estate-related assets. Co-head Siobhan O’Donnell in Los Angeles focuses on commercial real estate, and heads the CMBS loan origination team; she also advises on construction loans, preferred equity transactions and mezzanine loans. Jeffrey Page leads the New York office’s real estate finance team, specializing in all facets of real estate lending and restructuring work.

Other key lawyers:

Jeffrey Page; Raymond Quaglia; Glenn Figurski; Kelly Wrenn


‘Two things stand out to me regarding Ballard Spahr – one is their people and the other is their use of technology to improve the client experience. All of the attorneys that i have dealt with over the past 15 years have been very knowledgeable, thoughtful, creative and responsive. They are problem solvers that help my company and i work through problem assets wand maximize recoveries. The dashboard that they have developed is very helpful. It is a “one stop shop” where my asset managers can access pleadings, motions, loan documents, correspondence on an asset by asset basis. To my knowledge, this is unique in the industry.’

‘Ray Quaglia is an excellent attorney who has represented me in a number of difficult matters. Glenn Figurski and Kelly Wrenn also both deserve a special mention.’

Key clients

Western Alliance Bank

Multiple Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae Servicers

CGA Mortgage Capital

Regions Bank

Continental Realty Corporation

Work highlights

  • Represented Regions Bank, the lead bank and administrative agent in connection with a syndicated construction loan to a newly formed joint venture.
  • Advised CGA Mortgage Capital, the purchaser and lender in the sale, leaseback of Thrivent Financial for Lutherans new corporate headquarters located in Minneapolis.
  • Advised Western Alliance Bank as the senior lender in the extension of an $200m Inventory and Construction Loan Facility for a Hilton branded timeshare hotel project in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP advises on a wide range of debt related matters including CMBS loans, syndicated, bridge loans, mezzanine financings, and workouts for commercial projects and residential subdivisions. The firm continues to stand out for its emphasis on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), recently appointing a dedicated lead partner on the issue. Also of note is the firm's global presence and accompanying capability in cross-border mandates. James Kousoulas chairs the practice from Irvine.

Practice head(s):

James Kousoulas

Key clients

Bank of West

Benefit Street Partners Realty

Trust Brookfield Asset Management

California Bank & Trust

Harbor Group International

Flagstar Bank

Ladder Capital

LMF Commercial

Nuveen Real Estate

Work highlights

  • Represented California Bank & Trust, a full service bank specializing in business banking, in 15 deals totalling over $1bn involving residential subdivision construction, industrial bridge loans for industrial properties and bridge loans for multifamily assets.


Benefiting from a global pool of real estate lawyers, Dentons is instructed by US and non-US borrowers in addition to banks, life insurance companies, debt funds, and other traditional and non-traditional lenders on a wide range of financing structures. In June 2021, the practice launched Dentons Global Advisors, comprised of industry leaders with the aim to form an integrated counsel to clients facing commercial, financial and regulatory challenges. New York based David Hall and Gary Goodman advise on construction and term financings, mezzanine financings and workouts, with Goodman recognized as an authority in LIBOR transition issues. Linda White chairs the US-wide real estate practice from Chicago.

Practice head(s):

Linda White

Other key lawyers:

David Hall; Garry Goodman


‘The Dentons team has worked hard to understand the personnel, systems and requirements of our institution. This knowledge and effort has been enormously useful to us. They have acted as close advisors to us with intimate knowledge of our needs, rather than simply as technical experts. ‘

‘They are all very fine lawyers, meticulous, collegial and friendly. Their sense of humor is a big plus.’

Key clients

Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen Girozentrale (Helaba)

United Overseas Bank

Midland Loan Services, a division of PNC Bank, National Association

Greenland US Holding, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Represented Helaba in closing their first secured overnight financing rate (SOFR) loan, a $95m term loan secured by a 255-unit luxury apartment building in Jersey City, New Jersey.
  • Represented Midland Loan Services in closing a consent to transfer of interests for a joint venture’s $600m -plus acquisition of 42 industrial and four office properties.

McDermott Will & Emery LLP

With a robust network of national offices, McDermott Will & Emery LLP has extensive experience advising investment banks, private equity and institutional lenders in complex structured finance transaction, and continues to be known for its handling of financing transactions involving iconic buildings in New York. David Broderick concentrates on mortgage and mezzanine financing, debt syndication, preferred equity and loan securitization transactions. Jeffrey Steiner chairs the global real estate department, with Keith Pattiz leading the finance sub-team. All attorneys are based in New York.

Practice head(s):

Keith Pattiz, Jeffrey Steiner

Other key lawyers:

David Broderick

Key clients

Angelo Gordon

Apollo Global Management

Apollo Insurance Solutions Group LP

BentallGreenOak Strategic Capital Partners

BrightSpire Capital, Inc

DK Fund, LP – Draper & Kramer, Incorporated

Innovo Property Group

Ladder Capital Finance

Work highlights

  • Advised a subsidiary of a real estate lender in connection with the restructuring of a senior mezzanine loan secured by interests in the owner of the Century Plaza development project in Los Angeles.
  • Represented a real estate financing company in connection with its refinancing of a $360m mortgage construction loan for the development commonly known as Fifth + Broadway in Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Advised Walton Street Capital, and its subsidiaries CWUSAA Mortgage Lender, LP and CWUSAA Mezzanine Lender, LP in connection with the origination of a mortgage loan and a mezzanine loan totaling approximately $130m, involving eight industrial warehouse properties located throughout the United States.

Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Seyfarth Shaw LLP has established itself as a specialist in healthcare real estate finance and distressed loan acquisition and disposition. Its capabilities range from permanent, bridge, and construction financings, through to CMBS and CLO financings, and government-sponsored enterprise lending, among others. New York’s Daniel Evans and Atlanta’s Jay Wardlaw co-chair the practice with Robin Freeman  in San Francisco heading the health care finance side, and Arren Goldman in Charlotte focusing on distressed assets.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Evans; Jay Wardlaw

Other key lawyers:

Robin Freeman; Arren Goldman


‘Seyfarth’s real estate practice is cost efficient and constructive in helping to get transactions closed. Their practical appropriate to solving complex issues serves their clients well in ultimately bringing deals to a close.’

‘Seyfarth Shaw takes a very pragmatic and measured approach that facilitates excellent results and limits contentiousness in difficult negotiations.’

‘Jay Wardlaw and Dan Evans provide exceptional service. They are each incredibly responsive and eager to assist. I rely on their guidance without hesitation and find that our counterparties are always eager to work with them again.’

Key clients

LBA Realty

New York Life Insurance Company

John Hancock Life Insurance Company

Oliver St. Capital LLC

US Bank

Work highlights

  • Represented LBA Realty in a $1.6bn  recapitalization and financing of two industrial portfolios of 50+ total assets in eight states.
  • Represented New York Life Insurance Company in an aggregate $171m loan for a 33-property portfolio mix of office, industrial, and retail properties located in California and Nevada.
  • Advised John Hancock Life Insurance Company in a $145m acquisition and financing of a 722-unit Class A apartment project in Denver, Colorado.

Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP

Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP‘s lawyers have a notable focus on real estate fund structuring and capital formation, and regularly act for the largest private REITs, institutional and private investors and banks.  The national practice added Los Angeles based partners Peter Ballance and Lorie Lazarus in October 2020, both joining from Katten. A trusted counsel for investors and funds, Brian Diamond‘s key clients include J.P. Morgan Asset Management and Oaktree Capital Management. Michael McCarthy and Evan Hudson focus on mortgage and mezzanine financings and REITs, respectively. All figures are based in New York unless stated otherwise. 

Practice head(s):

Brian Diamond

Other key lawyers:

Michael McCarthy; Evan Hudson; Peter Ballance; Lorie Lazarus

Key clients

UBS Asset Management

J.P. Morgan Investment Management Inc.

Brookfield Real Estate Financial Partners

Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB)

Bank of America, N.A.


Mesa West Capital

Oaktree Capital Management, L.P.

Pfizer, Inc.

AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company

CBRE Global Real Estate Investors

Farmers & Merchants Bank

AEW Capital Management

Work highlights

  • Represented JPM and affiliates of Fisher Brothers in the closing of a mortgage and mezzanine loan from Morgan Stanley in the original principal amounts of $309m million and $91m, respectively, in connection with an office property located at 605 Third Avenue in New York City.
  • Represented an affiliate of a mezzanine debt fund in providing a mezzanine loan up to $60m on The Crescent located in Dallas, Texas.
  • Advised a college on a leaseback and financing arrangement with CGA Mortgage Capital and The University Financing Foundation with respect to the college’s residence hall.

McGuireWoods LLP

McGuireWoods LLP is noted for its strong representation of lenders in the origination and sale of multifamily mortgage loans to government-backed enterprise lenders; a key specialization for Los Angeles-based Alice Youngbar. In the New York office, practice head Dennis Mensi has extensive experience in affordable housing deals, and is also a key member of the COVID-19 task force, providing financial counsel for lenders on all related real estate challenges. Thomas Lansen is another key figure in the same office, highlighted for his work for commercial and investment banks in connection with their origination of commercial real estate loans intended for securitization or other sale on the secondary market.

Practice head(s):

Dennis Mensi

Other key lawyers:

Alice Youngbar; Thomas Lansen


‘Incredibly responsive and great to work with. Highly competent attorneys. Reasonable billing practices.’

‘Dennis Mensi’s experience, in my opinion, is rarely matched. We use a number of different counsel for our CMBS loan origination practice but Dennis is our go-to lawyer for thorny issues. He is always will to lend a hand on thorny issues, even when McGuireWoods is not handling the transaction.’

Dickinson Wright PLLC

With a wide geographic coverage across the Midwest, Dickinson Wright PLLC‘s national practice is sought after for its expertise financing development projects, CMBS and GSE loans, multi-state sale-leaseback transactions, synthetic leases, and public and tax-exempt bond financing. Representation of lenders and borrowers in commercial mortgage transactions is a key area of strength. Based in Troy, practice chair Katheryne Zelenock is highly recommended for commercial and multifamily mortgage loans.

Practice head(s):

Katheryne Zelenock


DW has been my primary firm for commercial real estate transactions as single counsel for Fannie/Freddie loans we originate. Kathy Zelenock and her team always deliver outstanding service, even in the most complex situations. All of this is accomplished while preserving a reasonable cost to the borrower. ‘


Key clients

Greystone Servicing Company/Arbor Agency

Lending/Pinnacle Bank

Kaufman Development

RockBridge Capital

Lument, Inc.

D.E. Shaw Renewable Investments, Ranger Power

Work highlights

  • Advising Greystone Servicing Company/Arbor Agency Lending/Pinnacle Bank on closing more than 200 Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac multifamily and manufactured housing mortgage loans in more than 25 states.
  • Represented Kaufman Development in a $170m construction loan, working on a seven tier loan structure with PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) financing, grants, bond issuance, conventional loans, and mezzanine debt for the multi-phase residential/office and retail Gravity project in downtown Franklinton.
  • Advised RockBridge Capital on a $70m construction loan for the Scioto Peninsula, a very large development adjacent to downtown Columbus involving multiple developers and development types (office, hotel, retail, residential), incorporating PACE dollars, grants, and mezzanine debt.

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, LLP

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, LLP has a strong presence in the New York, California and Texas real estate markets, utilizing a vast network of offices to represent lenders and borrowers of debt and equity capital in all types of financing transactions. Led by all-round real estate specialist Rachel Horsch in San Francisco, with the assistance of Los Angeles based Emily Bias, who focuses on tax-advantaged investment and affordable housing; and Steven Hamilton in San Diego, who primarily acts for lenders in originating, restructuring, construction, term and permanent loans. On the east cost, New York’s Caroline Harcourt represents lenders in connection with the origination, securitization, sale and purchase of mortgage and mezzanine loans and the negotiation of inter-creditor, co-lender and participation agreements in multi-tiered debt stacks.  

Practice head(s):

Rachel Horsch

Other key lawyers:

Emily Bias; Steven Hamilton; Caroline Harcourt

Key clients

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation

Icahn Partners L.P. and Icahn Partners Master Fund L.P.

Klövern AB

Prima Capital Advisors LLC



Work highlights

  • Represented Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in connection with the mortgage refinancing of luxury resort property in Hawaii.
  • Assisting a developer in advocacy to underwrite a C-PACE financing along with a HUD guaranteed financing, and also seek to establish developer’s rights following several “force majeure” events.