Gary Axelrod advises clients on complex business transactions in the real estate, hospitality, gaming, and leisure industries. His clients include real estate private equity sponsors and funds, REITs, institutional investors, operating companies, and entrepreneurial developers engaged in all aspects of real estate investment and development. In addition, Mr. Axelrod has extensive experience in complex asset-level and corporate-level restructurings.
Mr. Axelrod has significant experience in the hospitality industry and is Co-Chair of the firm's Hospitality, Gaming & Leisure Industry Group. He regularly represents owners and operators in connection with the sale, acquisition, development, financing, ownership, and management of hotel, resort, and gaming properties.
He also represents corporate, venture capital, and other private equity clients in bankruptcies, restructurings, mergers, acquisitions, and dispositions involving portfolio companies and their real estate assets. Mr. Axelrod’s practice also has a substantial cross-border element including projects in Canada, China, Dubai, India, Abu Dhabi, and Mexico.
Mr. Axelrod is regularly recognized in Chambers USA, America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, where he ranks as a Band 1 attorney in both the Real Estate industry and the Leisure & Hospitality industry. He is known by clients as “one of the best transactional real estate attorneys in Chicago. He understands what is important and has a great ability to get deals done,” Chambers USA 2012. Mr. Axelrod is a “great real estate finance attorney with strong negotiating and leadership skills” and “he has an unbeatable combination of industry knowledge and experience, with responsiveness, creativity and diplomacy,” Chambers USA 2011. Mr. Axelrod is also ranked as a leading expert in The Legal 500 US: Volume IV: Real Estate, Employment & Labor, and Tax, 2007-2015, was selected as a Leading Lawyer in Illinois for Real Estate by Leading Lawyers Network, a Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers Magazine, and included in Best Lawyers in America for Real Estate Law. He was also included In The Legal 500 US 2017 and 2019 and is recommended for Real Estate. Additionally, Mr. Axelrod is recommended for Investment Fund Formation & Management: REITs by The Legal 500 US 2014. Law360 named Mr. Axelrod a 2013, 2015, 2016, 2019, and 2020 MVP for notable legal work in the hospitality category.
Mr. Axelrod regularly serves on the Advisory Boards for Real Estate Law360 and Hospitality Law360 and was licensed as a certified public accountant in 1994.