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California investor firm buys Kenwood apartment portfolio

4700 South Drexel Boulevard (Credit: Google Maps)

A California investor paid $19.7 million to buy four apartment buildings in the Kenwood neighborhood on the city’s South Side.

The deed, signed on Nov. 9, lists the buyer as Brian Chien-Chih Chen, according to Cook County property records. Chen made the transaction through a company called I’m Abe Froman LLC, an apparent reference to the film “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”

The buildings are at 4424 South Drexel Boulevard, 4530 South Drexel Boulevard, 4700 South Drexel Boulevard and 4725 South Ingleside Avenue, records show.

The deed also ties back to BLVD Capital, a Beverly Hills-based investment firm that claims more than $400 million in real assets.

Chen’s contact information listed on the deed connects with the Palisadian Post, a weekly newspaper owned by Alan Smolinisky, Chen’s investing partner.

Berkadia funded the deal with a $17.2 million loan, records show.

The properties were sold by Teodor and Estera Luca under the name Drexel Management LLC.

Investors and landlords have been ramping up their interest in the city’s Near South Side, as a series of large-scale developments takes shape in Bronzeville.

In September, a 125-year-old mansion at 5026 South Greenwood hit the market for $4.5 million.

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