This study makes use of a unique dataset of predominantly US and global closed-ended unlisted real estate funds to investigate their performance characteristics. The sample covers multiple vintage years and includes a number of fund specific features. These are used to identify the key performance drivers of these vehicles through cross-section regression analysis. Particular attention is paid to the study of the performance persistence of managers. We also are able to make use of detailed cashflow histories for a number of the funds. This enables us to explore the investment timing abilities of fund managers and the determinants of both capital drawdown and distribution rates.