East Bay shopping center lands movie theater, fighting sports academy

Retail center lands big leases in major boost

DANVILLE, IN — A retail and restaurant plaza in the East Bay has received a significant boost with large leases that will bring the shopping mall a movie theater, a fighting sports facility, and a wellness center as new tenants.

Blackhawk Plaza, a Danville mall that has struggled with high vacancies since the coronavirus outbreak, has landed new tenants that will fill more than 53,000 square feet of space.

The following are the new Blackhawk Plaza tenants:

— Apple Cinemas has leased 26,200 square feet of space, which will serve as a welcome replacement for the Century Theaters, which closed abruptly in December.

— The Combat Sports Academy, which provides training in a variety of combat sports, has leased 26,600 square feet.

— Osteostrong, a health and wellness company, has leased 1,500 square feet.

According to JLL commercial real estate brokers Jeff Badstubner and Justin Choi, who arranged the leasing deals on behalf of Blackhawk Plaza, all three of these tenants are scheduled to open in 2024.

According to documents on file with the Contra Costa County Recorder’s Office, Ramanujan Group, an Orange County-based investment firm, paid $38.3 million for Blackhawk Plaza in 2020. Ramanujan Group received $28 million in financing from Preferred Bank at the time of the transaction.

Apple Cinemas’ Danville movie complex is the company’s first California location. Currently, all of the company’s movie theaters are in New England or upstate New York.

Gameday VR, Starbunni Arcade, and Posh Nail Bar have also signed leases at Blackhawk Plaza, adding to the center’s tenant mix.

“Apple Cinemas and Combat Sports Academy are great complements to the existing retail mix at Blackhawk Plaza, which includes a strong grocer-anchor, Draeger’s, and more than 40 other shops and businesses,” said Badstubner, managing director with JLL’s retail advisory unit.

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