The Real Deal New York

  • Court shuts down REBNY’s opposition to hotel conversion law

    Local Law 50 prevents 150-room-plus hotels from converting more than 20% of its space
    June 24, 2016 11:31AM
    From left: Margaret Chan and John Banks

    From left: Margaret Chan and John Banks

    Overcoming a legal challenge by the real estate industry, the de Blasio administration prevailed in a battle over a 2015 law that curbs hotel-to-residential condominium conversions.

    New York State Supreme Court Justice Margaret Chan ruled Thursday that the Real Estate Board of New York, which sought to overturn the law in a pair of lawsuits filed last year, did not have legal standing, Politico reported. Chan dismissed REBNY’s argument that the real estate industry would suffer financial damages from lost earning potential, saying the argument lacked evidence. [more]

  • Finally! 15 years later, 3 WTC tops out

    Anchor tenant GroupM taking 690K sf at 80-story tower
    June 24, 2016 11:11AM
    Larry Silverstein and 3 World Trade Center

    Larry Silverstein and 3 World Trade Center

    Silverstein Properties’ 3 World Trade Center topped out at 80 stories yesterday, nearly 15 years after the towers fell on Sept. 11. [more]

  • Are New Jersey’s office parks obsolete?

    TRD examines the future of the Garden State's suburban corporate sprawl
    June 24, 2016 10:31AM By Richard Murdocco
    Bell Works, once the country’s largest vacant office building, is slated to become a multi-use site with retail and hospitality.

    Bell Works in Holmdel, N.J.

    From the New Jersey Market Report: With an increasing number of companies moving toward urban cores, the future of New Jersey’s sprawling suburban office parks and large corporate plazas is in question.

    The Garden State, in particular, is vulnerable to sweeping trends in the use and subsequent obsolescence of traditional low-slung and sprawling office parks. Stephen Stirling of NJ Advance Media wrote in a piece last year, “The New Jersey office park isn’t what it used to be, and the state’s job market is suffering for it.” Stirling went on to call New Jersey’s office sector a “job-sucking albatross.” And when Newmark Grubb Knight Frank writes a report titled “Suburban Office Obsolescence,” as they did in September 2015, it’s clear that something is amiss. [more]

  • Those views!: Extell video shows skyline from LES tower

    Developer to launch local marketing of One Manhattan Square this fall
    June 24, 2016 10:03AM
    Rendering of One Manhattan Square

    Rendering of One Manhattan Square

    It’s all about the views, ‘bout the views, ‘bout the views. In a newly-launched video of its 80-story Lower East Side condominium, Extell Development is appealing to buyers who want to see the skyline and river from their middle-market apartments. [more]

  • Inside TheRealDeal
  • Activists target for-profit developers of affordable housing

    NYSAFAH says unions behind attack
    June 24, 2016 09:32AM
    From left: Mayor Bill de Blasio and Ron Moelis (illustration by Lexi Pilgrim)

    From left: Mayor Bill de Blasio and Ron Moelis (illustration by Lexi Pilgrim)

    “The Real Gentrifiers of NYC” sounds like a new reality show on Bravo. In fact, it’s a campaign by an activist group critical of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s housing plan, which is taking aim at for-profit developers of affordable housing. [more]

  • No vacancies: REBNY backs anti-Airbnb bill in Albany

    Real estate trade group upset that building owners are fined for illegal stays
    June 24, 2016 09:00AM
    From left: John Banks, Airbnb's Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Nathan Blecharczyk

    From left: John Banks, Airbnb’s Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Nathan Blecharczyk

    Game on: A fight between the powerful Real Estate Board of New York and short-term rentals giant Airbnb erupted in Albany last week, as lawmakers passed a bill taking aim at tenants who list short-term rentals. [more]

  • City investigates political events at Trump Tower

    A missing bench results in a $10K fine after the Donald is a no-show at a hearing
    June 24, 2016 08:30AM
    From Left: Trump Tower with bench and current Trump Tower without bench (photos from (inset: Donald Trump)

    From Left: Trump Tower with bench and current Trump Tower without bench (photos from (inset: Donald Trump)

    Is Donald Trump using Trump Tower for campaign events? That’s what city officials want to know, as they investigate whether the developer turned presidential candidate is inappropriately using the lobby of his Fifth Avenue tower for political use.

    The latest issue surrounds a 22-foot bench that is supposed be in the lobby of Trump Tower and available to the public. It has been missing for some time and on Thursday, city officials fined Trump $10,000 after representatives for the presidential candidate did not show up at a hearing. [more]

  • ASB to pay Thor $90M for Dolce & Gabbana’s Soho home

    Joseph Sitt’s firm paid $27M for 155 Mercer Street
    June 24, 2016 08:00AM
    From left: 155 Mercer Street, Joseph Sitt and Helen Hwang

    From left: 155 Mercer Street, Joseph Sitt and Helen Hwang

    Three years after shelling out $27 million for a Soho retail building, Joseph Sitt’s Thor Equities is selling 155 Mercer Street for $90 million. [more]

  • Battle brews for the Biltmore Hotel in SoFla

    Merchants Hospitality wants to buy lease, while leaseholders plan for partner to buy out the other
    June 24, 2016 07:30AM By Ina Cordle
    Biltmore Hotel (Credit: Jorge Royan)

    Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables (Credit: Jorge Royan)

    From the South Florida website: New York-based Merchants Hospitality wants to pay $110 million to buy the lease for the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables and renovate the historic property, as the current partners plan a separate change in interest following a contentious dispute, The Real Deal has learned.

    In a letter of intent for the Biltmore, signed by Merchants Hospitality president and CEO Abraham Merchant and obtained by TRD, Merchants has proposed to pay $40 million to pay off debt and $70 million to be split evenly between the 50/50 partners whose group holds the longterm lease, Gene Prescott and Robert Kay. The deal also includes at least $20 million to be spent to repair, renovate and upgrade the hotel to “luxury standards,” plus $5 million to be paid to the city of Coral Gables, which owns the hotel. [more]

  • Siguora, Popkin allege Naftali didn’t pay them their share of profits

    Freshly-departed acquisition execs suing former boss -- but he says suit is meritless
    June 24, 2016 07:00AM By Hiten Samtani
    From left: Victor Sigoura, Drew Popkin, and Miki Naftali

    From left: Victor Sigoura, Drew Popkin and Miki Naftali

    Just weeks after splitting to start their own firm, Victor Siguora and Drew Popkin are suing their former employer the Naftali Group, alleging the developer failed to pay them their agreed-upon share of profits from deals.

    Sigoura and Popkin are collectively seeking damages of at least $8 million, and are suing both the Naftali Group and its founder and CEO Miki Naftali. [more]

  • Current reader favorites:
    1. At 220 CPS, Steve Roth is the bouncer
    2. Trump’s 40 Wall Street is full of “frauds, thieves and … schemers”: report
    3. Heiberger says he will buy Joe Sitt out of Town stake
    4. “Jane Doe” files civil rape complaint against Trump in NY court
    5. Lincoln Tunnel lane shut down for Lev Leviev

  • Target inks 38K sf lease in Midwood

    Retailer signs at development site owned by Infinity Real Estate and Nightingale Properties
    June 23, 2016 06:15PM By Rich Bockmann
    Infinity Real Estate managing partner Steve Kassin and 1715 East 13th Street in Sheepshead Bay

    Infinity Real Estate managing partner Steve Kassin and 1715 East 13th Street in Midwood

    Big-box retailer Target is headed to Midwood, where it signed a lease for 38,000 square feet at a development site owned by Midtown-based Infinity Real Estate and Nightingale Properties.


  • Starwood Capital looks to sell all three 1 Hotels properties

    Portfolio, which sources value at $800M, includes Central Park and as-yet-incomplete BK Bridge Park hotels
    June 23, 2016 06:00PM By Mark Maurer
    Clockwise: Barry Sternlicht, 1 Hotel Central Park, Rendering of 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge and 1 Hotel South Beach

    Clockwise, from left: Barry Sternlicht, 1 Hotel Central Park, 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge and 1 Hotel South Beach

    Barry Sternlicht’s Starwood Capital Group is looking to sell all three hotels in its fledgling “eco-luxury” brand 1 Hotels, including two in New York City, sources told The Real Deal. [more]

  • Thor’s “Gold Coast” retail condo short on revenues

    Sitt’s pricey Madison Ave. property is in the red after biggest tenant backed out
    June 23, 2016 05:40PM By Rich Bockmann
    Rendering of 680 Madison Avenue (inset: Joseph Sitt)

    Rendering of 680 Madison Avenue (inset: Joseph Sitt)

    Joseph Sitt’s big play on Madison Avenue hasn’t gone according to plan. [more]

  • Industry City developers building 1,200-foot-long retail hub at complex

    The companies have spent $160M renovating the offices
    June 23, 2016 05:21PM
    Rendering of Industry City (photo from S9 Architecture)

    Rendering of Industry City (photo from S9 Architecture)

    The developers renovating the massive Industry City office complex in Sunset Park have embarked on the next phase of the project: a 1,200-foot-long retail hub. [more]

  • From the June issue’s “In their words” feature, a roundup of the funniest and most insightful comments on real estate:

    To read other smart and/or funny sayings, click here for the full feature.

  • LA Fitness chief sells Walker Tower PH for $45M

    Louis Welch paid $40M for 6,700 sf pad in 2014
    June 23, 2016 03:50PM By E.B. Solomont
    212 West 18th Street #Ph2

    212 West 18th Street #Ph2

    UPDATED: June 23, 4:12 p.m.: Without breaking much of a sweat, LA Fitness CEO Louis Welch sold his Walker Tower penthouse condominium unit for $45 million, two years after paying $40 million for the sprawling Chelsea pad. [more]

  • Luxury-Listings-Instagram

    Luxury Listings NYC’s latest social media channel is your ticket inside the lifestyles of the rich and Insta-famous. Featuring some of the priciest pads in Manhattan and most expensive estates around the globe, LLNYC‘s Instagram explores the larger-than-life playgrounds the world’s wealthiest call home.

    Have something you want to share? Tag your photos with #LLNYC and you might just end up on our feed.

    Click here to follow, but proceed with caution: You may experience some intense FOMO.

  • Clipper, Equity Residential sued over 421g

    Tenants allege years of rent overcharges in abuse of tax cut program -- but Bistricer says suits are frivolous
    June 23, 2016 03:00PM By Will Parker
    From left: 50 Murray Street and 71 Broadway

    From left: 50 Murray Street and 71 Broadway

    UPDATED, 12:21 p.m., JUN 24 Tenants at two of Clipper Equity’s Financial District buildings that receive a 421g tax abatement are suing the landlord, alleging years of unlawful rent overcharges. Clipper, however, maintains that the legislative history and intent of the abatement allow it to deregulate apartments that have passed the deregulation threshold. Equity Residential is facing a similar suit from tenants at one of its buildings in the neighborhood. [more]

  • VIDEO: Check out Midtown’s new fertility clinic in the sky

    The Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine picked an unconventional spot for its latest clinic
    June 23, 2016 02:20PM By Alistair Gardiner


    Over the past six months, CCRM New York has been converting 17,000 square feet of Midtown office space into a fully functioning fertility clinic. Watch an interview with Dr. Brian Levine, the clinic’s director of practice, and a video tour of the space after the jump.