The Real Deal New York

Long-vacant Times Square space marred by violence is back on the market

The former Spotlight club was site of murder at rapper Lil’ Kim’s birthday party

June 26, 2012 04:30PM
By Adam Pincus

Spotlight Live, c. 2007

A large Times Square retail location that was briefly home to the Spotlight Live club is back on the market with a new agent. The space is notorious as the place in 2008 where a woman was killed the night of a birthday party for rapper Lil’ Kim and in an earlier incident a coat-check brawl spilled out onto the street and turned fatal.

Newmark Grubb Knight Frank Retail was picked this month as the leasing agent for the five-level mid-block retail spot at 1604 Broadway, at 49th Street, data from real estate tracking firm CoStar Group shows.

Jeffrey Roseman, executive vice president of Newmark, is asking $3.5 million for the 22,792-square-foot space. That includes 1,814 feet on the ground floor, the CoStar listing says. He did not respond to a request for comment.

The location is controlled by Jeff Sutton, SL Green Realty and Onyx Equities through a long-term lease that they acquired in 2005. There are 26 years remaining on the leasehold.

The land is owned by a company called Farmore Realty. A spokesperson for SL Green referred calls to Sutton. Sutton’s Wharton Properties did not respond to a request for comment. Onyx referred calls to SL Green.

The Las Vegas-style Spotlight, which boasts a large theater where club goers and pop stars would sing karaoke, opened with great fanfare in April 2007. But it closed in early 2009 following the 2008 violence. In the first incident, a man was stabbed to death in January after patrons were ejected from the club and fought on the street. In the second incident, at Lil’ Kim’s birthday party in August, club employee Syed Rahman pleaded guilty to killing 24-year-old Ingrid Rivera on the roof of the building.

The space has been vacant since the club closed.

Robert Futterman, CEO of Robert K. Futterman & Associates, who is not involved in the marketing of the property, said he expected a restaurant would take the space.

“You can’t get enough restaurant seats [in Times Square]“, he said.

The balance of the building is currently occupied by a Sbarro restaurant, which has about 3,000 square feet on the ground floor and additional lower level space.

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