Real Estate


Venable has one of the most comprehensive real estate practices in the U.S. The firm represents clients in virtually all areas of commercial real estate. Our firm maintains a broad practice representing local, regional, national, and international clients, including developers, syndicators, investors, lenders, pension funds, real estate investment trusts, retailers, utility companies, telecommunication companies, nonprofit institutions, government agencies, property managers, and brokers.

Venable's transactional experience has involved all types and classes of property, including office buildings, hotels and resorts, retail centers, industrial properties, infrastructure, residential developments, senior living facilities, entertainment complexes, educational facilities, and sports and cultural facilities. We deliver a complete range of integrated legal services that are designed to achieve the best outcomes for our clients. Our work includes zoning and land use analyses and approvals, negotiation of design and construction agreements, formation of partnerships and limited liability companies, acquisitions and dispositions, financings (including restructurings and workouts), leasing transactions, and providing related tax, environmental, and bankruptcy advice.

Although much of our practice involves commercial real estate transactions between private parties, we have extensive experience in matters involving federal, state, and local agencies. We have broad experience with government permitting, acquisition of government-owned property, government approvals, and public-private partnerships. In addition, we have represented governmental and quasi-governmental agencies, public authorities, and local development corporations in many complex projects throughout the United States.

Our Team

  • Counsel to one-third of publicly held REITs in America
  • American College of Real Estate Lawyers:
    • Seven members
    • Two past presidents
  • American Bar Association:
    • Current member of the ABA House of Delegates
    • Current Chair of the ABA Task Force on Gatekeeper Regulation and the Profession
    • Former Chair of the ABA Section of Real Property, Trust and Estate Law

Practice Focus

    • Acquisition and disposition
    • Condominiums/cooperatives
    • Design and construction contracts
    • Environmental concerns
    • Hotel management agreements
    • Joint ventures
    • Co-investment vehicles
    • Like-kind exchanges
    • Public-private partnerships
    • Stock purchase agreements
    • Zoning and land use
    • Biotechnology
    • Build-to-suit transactions
    • Government
    • Ground leases
    • Office
    • Retail and restaurant
    • Warehouse/industrial
    • Defeasance
    • Hedges/swaps
    • Mezzanine financing
    • Mortgage lending/borrowing
    • Sale/leaseback
    • Securitized lending
    • Strategies for dealing with distressed real estate
    • Tax-exempt bonds
    • Tax increment financing
    • Tax planning for real estate transactions
    Real estate related taxes
    • PILOT agreements
    • Recordation and transfer tax planning
    • Tax exemptions
    • Zoning and land use

    Project Types

    • Biotech laboratories
    • Condominiums/cooperatives
    • Cultural facilities
    • Hotels/resorts
    • Hospitals
    • Industrial properties
    • Infrastructure 
    • Mixed-use urban land development
    • Multi-family housing
    • Office buildings
    • Residential communities
    • Retail properties
    • Schools and universities
    • Shopping centers
    • Telecommunications facilities

    Client Focus

    • Banks
    • Brokers
    • Developers
    • Governmental and quasi-governmental entities
    • Hospitality companies
    • Investors
    • Lenders
    • Life insurance companies
    • Pension funds
    • Property managers
    • REITs
    • Retailers
    • Syndicators
    • Telecom, rail, and utility companies


  • Represented a national pension fund advisor in connection with the acquisition, financing, and disposition of core multifamily and retail properties valued at more than $210,000,000 and located in major metropolitan areas in Maryland, Arizona, New Mexico, California, Georgia, and North Carolina
  • Represent a government-sponsored entity, the country’s largest buyer of mortgage loans, in a variety of transactional, program, and regulatory matters. Representative transactions during the past year include the negotiation and documentation of restructuring of an $8 billion loan secured by over 100 multifamily properties located throughout the United States and the modification and extension of $350 million loan secured by over 30 manufactured housing communities located throughout the United States
  • Represented the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (World Bank) in connection with the World Bank's lease of an entire office building in Washington, DC’s central business district to the United States of America acting through the General Services Administration (GSA) for use by the State Department
  • Represented Maryland’s second-largest city in the $350 million redevelopment of its mixed-use town center from concept to dedication. Highlights included creating multiple condominium regimes and sub-condominium regimes; clearing environmental hurdles; overcoming state and local tax issues; and gaining regulatory approvals of many kinds, including clearing the way for a citywide wireless network
  • Represented Marriott and its affiliates in their acquisitions of 35 hotels on four continents in one transaction. Marriott simultaneously restructured its relationships with the sellers in 30 other hotels. The closing included transfer of 16 properties to new owners who gave long-term management contracts to Marriott. The transaction closed on schedule—after extensive due diligence, structural and environmental studies of each property, and negotiation of management contracts and consent agreements with ground lessors, all orchestrated by Venable
  • Represented Intelsat in its relocation of its U.S. headquarters (including more than 430 employees) from Washington, DC, to Tysons Tower in Fairfax County, VA. Intelsat is leasing approximately 188,000 square feet of space in Tysons Tower. This lease transaction was the first major deal to make the Metro-oriented redevelopment of Tysons Corner a reality. Venable also provided valuable guidance related to zoning and entitlement issues and continues to provide advice on the construction aspects of the transaction


  • Highly ranked in Chambers USA, REITS: Maryland Counsel and Retail, National, 2012 – 2019
  • Highly ranked in Chambers USA, Real Estate (DC and Maryland) 2012 – 2019
  • Ranked in U.S. News-Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms," 2011 – 2019
    • Tier 1 Real Estate Law (National; Baltimore; DC)
    • Tier 1 Litigation – Real Estate (National)
    • Tier 1 Eminent Domain and Condemnation (Baltimore)
    • Tier 1 Land Use and Zoning Law (Baltimore)
    • Tier 1 Litigation – Land Use and Zoning (Baltimore), 2011 – 2017
  • Ranked among the nation's top firms for Real Estate in Legal 500
  • Attorneys with top rankings by
    • Best Lawyers in America
    • Chambers USA
    • Legal 500