AREAS OF EXPERTISE
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University of Victoria
British Columbia, 1989
Mr. Benson’s practice is focused primarily on commercial real estate acquisitions and dispositions and development matters. He has represented developers in a variety of residential, mixed use and comprehensive projects including complex conventional and airspace subdivisions and rezonings. Mr. Benson also assists clients with the formation of joint ventures and limited partnerships, and has significant experience in hotel transactions, hotel management agreements and resort development.
Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory named Mr. Benson as a leading practitioner in the Property Development area for 2014, 2015 and 2018, and currently ranks him as “Consistently Recommended” amongst Vancouver’s Leading Practitioners. He is also listed in the 2019 edition of the Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the 500 Leading Lawyers in Canada.
Best Lawyers recognized Mr. Benson as Vancouver Real Estate Lawyer of the Year in 2013, 2016 and 2018, and one of Canada’s Best Lawyers in the real estate area in 2018 and each of the previous seven years. Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory named Mr. Benson as a leading practitioner in the Property Development area for 2014, 2015 and 2018, and currently ranks him as “Consistently Recommended” amongst Vancouver’s Leading Practitioners. He is also listed in the 2019 edition of the Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the 500 Leading Lawyers in Canada. Chambers and Partners ranked Mr. Benson for 2019 in the real estate field in British Columbia, and note that he is ‘a particularly dynamic figure in the market and “somebody to watch.”’
- Acting for developers in all aspects of over 150 condominium developments (approximately 3,000 suites) over the past 15 years, including numerous master-planned communities and complex conventional and airspace subdivisions.
- Acquisition, disposition and financing of numerous investment properties and development sites in Vancouver, the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island and British Columbia interior.
- Refinancing and sale of the Sutton Place hotels in Edmonton and Vancouver and the Sutton Place brand.
- Acquisition and subsequent disposition of the Pacific Palisades Hotel (Vancouver) and disposition of the Delta Ocean Pointe Resort and Spa (Victoria), Harbour Towers Hotel (Victoria), Georgian Court Hotel and Coast Vancouver Airport Hotel.
- Negotiation of master agreement and management documents, preparation of condominium hotel offering documents, and all development work for the Pan Pacific Whistler Mountainside Four Seasons Resort Whistler and the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Centre.
- Acquisition of Crown tenure and permits and related property issues, for BC Hydro’s Northern Transmission Line project.
- Real estate development and related matters in connection with the expansion of the Panorama Mountain Resort ski area and village near Invermere, British Columbia including the servicing, construction, financing, subdivision, and sale of conventional lots, bare land strata lots, townhouses and condominium hotels and subsequent sale of the Resort.
- Real estate development and related matters relating to the major expansion of “Whistler Creekside”.
- Offering documentation, hotel management agreements and related material, and real estate development work, for several quarter-ownership projects and tenth-share deeded private residence clubs at Whistler, British Columbia, as well as numerous other condominium hotel developments including the Westin Grand (Vancouver), the Pan Pacific Mountainside Whistler and the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Centre.
Mr. Benson received his B.A. (Economics) from the University of Victoria and his Juris Doctor from the University of Victoria Law School.