In retail leasing, size apparently doesn’t matter — size of a brokerage firm, that is. Top honors at the Real Estate Board of New York’s annual retail deal of the year awards went to the president of Bloom Real Estate Group, a firm made up of just nine agents, and to two brokers from the mammoth Cushman & Wakefield.
Scott Bloom, of Bloom Real Estate, was recognized for leasing Key Food at 55 Fulton Street in lower Manhattan. He took the prize for the deal that most significantly benefits the Manhattan retail market. Meanwhile, Cushman & Wakefield’s C. Bradley Mendelson and Alan Schmerzler were honored in the most creative deal category for leasing the Times Square Theater.
The winners were chosen from 11 deal submissions, according to REBNY.
“These deals make significant contributions to two important neighborhoods — the historic Times Square tourist area and the growing residential community in lower Manhattan,” said REBNY President Steven Spinola, commending the winning brokers for their achievements.
At 55 Fulton, Bloom facilitated a 30,000-square-foot lease for Key Food in a vacant space that previously housed a Burger King and a Foot Locker. The transaction, which REBNY retail committee chairman Chase Welles dubbed “amazing in its simplicity,” was reported to be the fifth largest retail deal in Manhattan in 2011. When it opens next month, it will bring the first-ever full-service market to the neighborhood.
“Residents moved into the Financial District despite not having the basic amenity of a top-quality supermarket and then thankfully they voiced their desire for one,” Bloom told The Real Deal.
Meanwhile, Mendelson and Schmerzler’s deal, which will result in the restoration and conversion of the historic theater at 217 West 42nd Street, was lauded for its brokers’ success in overcoming significant obstacles. It took more than two years and several deal restructurings before a lease between Broadway 4D Theater NY LLC and the New 42nd Street, a not-for-profit organization, was finalized in March.
In an interview following the awards ceremony, Schmerzler said the deal had been even more complicated than the submission could convey.