The Real Deal New York

  • Muss cleared of wrongdoing on botched Staten Island deal

    NJ investor sued Queens developer over $4M deposit on a $38M parcel
    February 09, 2016 05:30PM
    Prince's Point Staten Island

    The Prince’s Point site on Staten Island

    The New York state Supreme Court’s Appellate Division upheld a ruling last week that absolves Muss Development of wrongdoing in relation to the Queens-based firm’s botched $38 million sale of a Staten Island development site.

    The court ruled in 2014 that Muss is not responsible for problems with a seawall at the 23-acre site, which New Jersey investor Lawrence Bresnick agreed to acquire through his entity, Prince’s Point LLC, for nearly $38 million in 2006. [more]

  • Meet the little Williamsburg building that’s home to over 1,000 LLCs

    The likes of Menachem Stark, Yoel Goldman have plied their trade through 199 Lee Avenue
    February 09, 2016 05:20PM By Ariel Stulberg and Kyna Doles
    199 Lee Avenue in Williamsburg (credits: Google Street View and the Brooklyn Daily)

    199 Lee Avenue in Williamsburg (credits: Google Street View and the Brooklyn Daily)

    At first glance it seems like one nondescript building among scores in South Williamsburg, a three-story brown-brick property housing a small retail store and a couple of apartments above.

    But in Hasidic real estate circles, the 3,500-square-foot structure at 199 Lee Avenue is legendary. Hundreds of landlords from the Orthodox community, who collectively own thousands of apartments in Brooklyn’s fastest-growing neighborhoods, have mailboxes there. Every month, these mailboxes are used to collect rent checks and help cloak the identities of some of the city’s most mysterious property owners. [more]

  • Affordable housing lender rebounds after $900M in bad loans

    CPC whittled down troubled mortgages to $3M
    February 09, 2016 04:50PM

    CPC CEO Rafael Cestero

    Community Preservation Corporation, a major New York affordable housing lender, has whittled down its debt after almost drowning in $900 million of bad loans made before the real estate crash, and will return to it original mission.

    “We went through a period, driven by the boom in the real estate market, where we got away from our core mission,” said CEO Rafael Cestero, who was hired in 2012 by the organization’s board to turn it around.

    Established in 1974, CPC used capital raised from commercial banks to finance affordable multifamily rental apartments throughout the city, but veered off course during the boom when it began lending to riskier market-rate projects. [more]

  • The Lower East Side goes upscale: Q&A, part II

    L+M's Isaac Henderson and Goldman Sachs' Margaret Anadu explain why the LES is "an excellent value"
    February 09, 2016 04:15PM By Adam Warner
    From left: Isaac Henderson, Margaret Anadu and Essex Crossing at

    From left: Isaac Henderson, Margaret Anadu and a rendering of Essex Crossing at on the Lower East Side

    From the February issue: The Lower East Side is a long-gritty neighborhood that’s undergoing a dramatic makeover. Driving the transformation is the $1.1 billion Essex Crossing mega project, which is set to deliver 1,000 units of housing along with retail, office, and community/cultural uses.

    In the second web installment, The Real Deal asked Isaac Henderson, senior project manager of L+M Development Partners, one of the developers on the project, and Margaret Anadu, managing director of Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group, one of the investors, to weigh in on the LES market and why the neighborhood is being billed as the most “affordable cool” option in the city. [more]

  • Inside TheRealDeal
  • Meadow Partners files plans for Williamsburg office conversion

    Investment firm bought 65K sf former factory for $42M in September
    February 09, 2016 03:45PM

    109 South 5th Street in Williamsburg (inset: Meadow Partners’ Jeffrey Kaplan)

    Meadow Partners is moving ahead with plans to convert a former South Williamsburg factory at 109 South 5th Street into a new office building. [more]

  • Michael Strahan

    Michael Strahan

    Football legend Michael Strahan converted his success on the grid into a charmed career on the small screen. The celebrated NFL Hall of Famer and Giants Super Bowl champ has gone on to equal fame as a television personality, with hosting gigs on “Live with Kelly and Michael,” “Good Morning America” and as a “Fox NFL Sunday” analyst. Strahan talked to LLNYC about some of his newest ventures as he takes the next step and translates his fame and wide-ranging appeal into a new brand. [more]

  • Office REITs had an underwhelming 2015

    NYC-focused firms struggled to deliver positive shareholder returns
    February 09, 2016 03:00PM By Rey Mashayekhi

    From left: Owen Thomas, Marc Holliday and Steven Roth

    While residential-focused real estate investment trusts like AvalonBay Communities and Equity Residential saw double-digit returns mirrored by positive stock price performance last year, their office counterparts such as SL Green Realty, Vornado Realty Trust and Boston Properties had difficulty coming up with the goods. [more]

  • Town’s Greenwich Village manager defects to Warburg after office closures

    Brennan Zahler now serving as company’s Tribeca sales director
    February 09, 2016 02:35PM By Katherine Clarke
    Brennan Zahler, Fred Peters and 120 Hudson Street

    Brennan Zahler, Fred Peters and 124 Hudson Street

    Brennan Zahler, the former manager of Town Residential’s Greenwich Village office, jumped to Warburg Realty following the closure of Town’s LaGuardia Place location.

    Zahler began late last month as sales director for Warburg’s Tribeca flagship, which is slated to move from 100 Hudson Street to a larger location at 124 Hudson Street in the next few months, a spokesperson for Warburg told The Real Deal. [more]

  • Twining, CBD secure $70M loan for 27-story LIC resi project

    The 124K-square-foot rental building to be called Watermark Court Square
    February 09, 2016 02:07PM

    From left: Alex Twining and a rendering of Watermark Court Square in Long Island City (credit: Twining Properties)

    Twining Properties and partner CBD secured $70 million in debt and equity to fund the development of a 27-story, 168-unit residential rental building in Long Island City.

    Watermark Court Square, a proposed 124,500-square-foot property, will hold a mix of studios, and one- and two-bedroom apartments. There will also be 2,500 square feet of retail space at the building, located at 27-19 44th Drive between Thomson and Jackson avenues. [more]

  • Developers now required to explain LLC disclosure order to buyers

    Offering plans must inform buyers of Treasury's plan to unmask LLCs: AG memo
    February 09, 2016 01:37PM By Will Parker

    Developers must now tell buyers about the Treasury’s new LLC disclosure order

    Rockwell’s bemoaning 1984 hit “Somebody’s Watching Me” would be a choice anthem for the tortured souls just looking to buy a little luxury real estate anonymously.

    The New York State Attorney General’s Real Estate Finance Bureau released a new memorandum Monday that requires condominium sponsors to make clear that the US Treasury intends on obtaining buyers’ true identities when they buy luxury apartments through LLCs in all-cash deals. [more]

  • Ex-Guggenheim curator forged letter to beat Airbnb claims on rent-stabilized pad: suit

    Landlord claims Eileen Hickey is charging 5 times her rent for Tribeca loft
    February 09, 2016 01:05PM
    From left: Eileen Hickey and 460 Greenwich Street

    From left: Eileen Hickey and 460 Greenwich Street

    Former Guggenheim Museum curator Eileen Hickey is being accused in court of forging a missive to keep her rent-stabilized Tribeca loft, which her landlord says she has been renting out on Airbnb for five times what she’s paying.

    Hickey says landlord Robert Moskowitz wants to evict her from the 1,800-square-feet two-bedroom loft at 460 Greenwich Street — where she has lived for 40 years — so he can hike up the current $1,500 rent. [more]

  • These were the top home sales in BK, Queens in January

    A Park Slope townhouse was the priciest at $6 million
    February 09, 2016 12:35PM By Kathryn Brenzel
    From left: 586 Fourth Street and 39 Winter Street in Forest Hills Gardens

    From left: 586 4th Street in Park Slope and 39 Winter Street in Forest Hills Gardens

    The year got off to a somewhat slow start for single-family home sales in Brooklyn. [more]

  • Many luxury condo units will become rentals: LeFrak (VIDEO)

    Developer says there's a "bit of a bubble" in NYC's top-tier market
    February 09, 2016 12:08PM


    Dynastic developer Richard LeFrak predicted that both condo prices and rents in New York will flatten or fall in the near future.

    Click here to read more and watch the rest of the video.

  • Beyonce-airbnb

    Beyonce and the Airbnb house she rented for the Super Bowl | Credit: Columbia Records

    From Luxury Listings: Super Bowl queen Beyoncé is the latest celebrity who has discovered the wonders of Airbnb. Perhaps she and Gwyneth discussed it during Blue Ivy and Apple’s playdate (or maybe Chris Martin told her — he is only “consciously uncoupled” from Gwyn, after all).

    Anywho, Beyoncé took time away from promoting her “Formation” tour and video to do her due diligence and promote the Airbnb apartment she was staying in during the Super Bowl on Instagram and Facebook. Needless to say, it’s pretty, pretty nice. [more]

  • Do families making $173K a year need affordable housing?

    Higher Bloomberg-era income limits apply at Gotham’s 250 Ashland Place
    February 09, 2016 11:13AM

    A rendering of 250 Ashland in Downtown Brooklyn and David Picket, president of the Gotham Organization

    “Affordable” is relative.

    At new affordable buildings such as the Gotham Organization and DT Salazar’s 250 Ashland Place in Downtown Brooklyn, landlords are offering subsidized units for families making relatively high incomes.

    Critics say those Bloomberg administration-era standards fail to fulfill the promise of affordability for most families. [more]

  • Deputy mayor signals affordable housing compromise

    De Blasio’s Mandatory Inclusionary Housing goes before City Council this week
    February 09, 2016 10:35AM
    From left: Alicia Glen and Bill de Blasio

    From left: Alicia Glen and Bill de Blasio

    Ahead of its meeting with the City Council, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration is showing signs that it’s willing to compromise on its signature housing plan by tinkering with tiered income levels.

    Critics contend the Mandatory Inclusionary Housing plan doesn’t go far enough for families making less than $40,000. [more]

  • Investment sales ranking: Who crushed it and who got crushed?

    Eastdil squashes rivals and Rosewood makes big gains in heated market
    February 09, 2016 10:00AM By Mark Maurer
    From left: Doug Harmon, Darcy Stacom and Bob Knakal

    From left: Doug Harmon, Darcy Stacom and Bob Knakal

    From the February issue: New York City had a stellar year in 2015 for building sales — with massive properties like Stuyvesant Town-Peter Cooper Village and 11 Madison trading hands. But while it’s the buyers and sellers who normally make headlines, the brokers on those deals made out pretty well, too.

    This month, The Real Deal ranked the top 30 investment sales brokerages for 2015 citywide and by borough. [more]

  • Droga5 takes an additional 110K sf at Silverstein’s 120 Wall St.

    The 34-story FiDi Building is now 100% occupied
    February 09, 2016 09:37AM
    From left: Droga5's Sarah Thompson, 120 Wall Street in the Financial District and Larry Silverstein

    From left: Droga5’s Sarah Thompson, 120 Wall Street in the Financial District and Larry Silverstein

    Global ad agency Droga5 is more than doubling its space at Silverstein Properties’ 120 Wall Street in the Financial District, leasing 110,000 square feet in addition to the 98,000 it currently occupies. [more]

  • Paul Massey launches political action nonprofit

    1NY Together will “foster a dialogue” about wide range of issues
    February 09, 2016 09:01AM
    Paul Massey

    Paul Massey

    Paul Massey is launching a political action nonprofit that will “foster a dialogue in the city” about issues related to education, infrastructure, crime and the economy.

    Massey, who sold the commercial brokerage firm he built with Robert Knakal — Massey Knakal Realty Services — to Cushman & Wakefield reportedly for $100 million in 2014, said he wants to “build consensus” and named the nonprofit 1NY Together.

    “This isn’t a tale of two cities; it’s one city and it can be great for everybody,” he said. [more]

  • 220 Central Park South, 50 West Street and 30 Park Place

    220 Central Park South, 50 West Street and 30 Park Place

    UPDATED: Feb. 9, 11:40 a.m.: Buyers who get in early on new condominium developments may shoulder more risk, but they’re typically rewarded with a perk: lower prices.

    In boom times, developers – and marketers – are known to raise condo prices throughout the sales and marketing of a building to maximize sales. To get a sense of the biggest price jumps out there, The Real Deal analyzed projects approved since January 2014 and ranked them based on which developments had the steepest price increases, via amendments to the condo offering plans filed with the state Attorney General’s office. [more]