Sarasota retirement community sells for $93.1M

SARASOTA -- An independent and assisted-living facility south of downtown Sarasota has sold for more than $93 million.

The Fountains at Lake Pointe Woods changed hands on June 1 after being owned by the same company for the past decade. According to Sarasota County property records, the buyer is North Star Realty Finance, a real estate investment trust headquartered in New York City.

The seller was Watermark Retirement Communities. According to its website, the Tucson company owns retirement properties in 21 states.

The transaction dwarfs other large local sales this year. In Sarasota County in March, a Pennsylvania company bought the Courtyard By Marriott and the Marriott Residence Inn on University Avenue for $22.9 million. In Manatee County, no sales have cracked $10 million in 2015.

Watermark purchased The Fountains in 2005 for $28.2 million, according to records. The facility, which is adjacent to the Sarasota Square Mall at 3260 Lake Pointe Blvd. was built in the mid-1980s.

The facility markets independent living apartments and villas, as well as assisted living units. It has amenities including on-site food service, a swimming pool and a residential buildings fronting a large lake. Property records show The Fountains spans more than 435,000 square feet.

Peggy Beasley, the executive director of The Fountains, did not immediately respond to a request to comment on the sale of the retirement community.

Few recent retirement community transactions in the area have pushed above the $50 million mark. The biggest retirement community transaction in Manatee County last year saw Irvine, Calif.-health care real estate investment company HCP Inc. purchase of Freedom Village in Bradenton for $53 million last September.

Matt M. Johnson, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7027.