Douglas L. Burton


  • Chair, Real Estate Practice Group

Doug Burton is a well-regarded real estate lawyer with more than two decades of experience in private equity investment and joint ventures, development, acquisitions, dispositions, leasing and financing. His clients include real estate investment trusts, top pension fund advisors, Fortune 50 corporations, developers and nonprofit institutions, with a broad range of asset classes, including lab and life sciences, hospitality, multi-family, seniors housing, office, industrial and retail.

Community Involvement

Mr. Burton was the president of his alumni class at Amherst College from 2002-2012, and past member of the board of directors of the Mountain View Association. 

Professional Activities

Since 2001, Mr. Burton is a frequent lecturer and guest lecturer at the MIT Center for Real Estate, both conducing full-day professional development seminars and teaching graduate level courses. Most recently, he was a guest lecturer speaking about distressed loans and capital arrangements at a joint MIT-NYU class in May 2017, and a guest lecturer speaking about loan workouts at MIT in April 2018.

Mr. Burton co-taught professional development seminars and spoke as a guest lecturer for various graduate level courses at the New York University Schack Institute of Real Estate from 2009 to 2011.

He is a regular guest lecturer at Columbia University's MSRED Program since 2009, most recently speaking about distressed loans and capital arrangements in February 2019.

Mr. Burton is a member of the Pension Real Estate Association, Urban Land Institute and the International Council of Shopping Centers. He is also a member of the American Bar Association, New York State Bar Association, Massachusetts Bar Association and Boston Bar Association.


  • Private Equity Investments

    Representation of investment managers in billions of dollars of joint ventures, financings, acquisitions and dispositions, including the work-out of multiple troubled loans and joint venture arrangements, including:
    • Joint venture and acquisition of a trophy office tower in San Francisco for more than a quarter billion dollars
    • Acquisition of a $110 million lifestyle shopping center under redevelopment in Texas
    • Formation and financing of an $80 million partially seeded joint venture to acquire retail properties on a national platform
    • Disposition of a $110 million portfolio of industrial properties across multiple funds in three states, including the transfer of a municipal development authority bond arrangement
  • Seniors Housing

    • Representation of the institutional owner in the sale of a portfolio of CCRCs for more than $200 million in Florida
    • Representation of the majority equity investor in the joint venture, financing, work out, and ultimate disposition of a $50 million IL facility with home health care on a ground lease in California
    • Representation of the majority equity investor and owner in the joint venture, financing, workout and sale of an $80 million portfolio of IL, AL and ALZ facilities in Washington
    • Representation of the investment advisor and owner in the portfolio sale of 12 licensed facilities, across multiple comingled funds, for $300 million
  • Retail

    • Representation of one of the two largest home improvements centers in the acquisition, leasing and development of numerous sites throughout the East Coast, including both stand-alone sites and sites forming integrated components of larger shopping centers, as well as sites purchased out of bankruptcies
    • Representation of a national quick service restaurant in its expansion into the northeast market
  • Development/Hospitality

    • Representation of a Developer in the site acquisition and subsequent development of the tallest residential tower in the City of Boston
    • Representation of a Developer in the acquisition, debt and equity financing, branding and subsequent development of the first five-star hotel in Iceland
    • Representation of a developer in the acquisition, debt and equity financing, development and operation of a ground leased nationally listed historic site as a 300-room luxury hotel, including the implementation of a historic tax credit structure, and the negotiation of leases and management agreements with the signature bar, restaurant and hotel manager


  • Named a Go To Commercial Real Estate Lawyer by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2023)
  • Named to Boston Magazine’s Top Lawyers list in the area of real estate law (2021–2023).
  • Selected by peers for inclusion in the 2015–2024 editions of Best Lawyers in America in the area of real estate law.
  • Named to the "Massachusetts Super Lawyers" list for real estate law (2021–2023).
  • Recommended in the 2017 and 2019 editions of The Legal 500 United States for his real estate practice.
  • Recognized as a leading attorney in Massachusetts in the 2012 and 2013 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business for his work in real estate law.
  • Selected as a Boston Magazine "New England Super Lawyer Rising Star" in 2009 and 2010.

Insights & News


  • Education

    • JD, Cornell Law School, 1996

      magna cum laude Order of the Coif
    • BA, Amherst College, 1992

      magna cum laude
  • Admissions

    • Massachusetts

    • New York



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