Bond takes over CBHK Flatiron office

By Candace Taylor | July 01, 2009 10:42AM

Bond’s Bruno Ricciotti and 64 W. 21st St.

Bond New York is taking over at least one of the offices previously occupied by Coldwell Banker Hunt Kennedy, and may lease another one as well.

The residential brokerage signed a lease yesterday for three floors in a townhouse in the Flatiron District at 64 West 21st Street, a space occupied by CBHK until the company closed in May.

The 2,500-square-foot space, located between Fifth and Sixth avenues, has a deck and backyard and fits 35 desks, according to Bruno Ricciotti, a principal at Bond New York. 

Frank Gerage, Bond’s new managing director of commercial properties and a former CBHK employee, will move to the second floor of the 21st Street office with his team.

Hal Gavzie, former managing director of leasing for the Corcoran Group, will manage the ground floor and continue to oversee Bond’s Union Square office at 21 West 19th Street.

Bond had originally planned to lease more space at the Union Square office to accommodate the 10-agent commercial sales and leasing division, but those plans changed when Ricciotti heard that CBHK would cease operations, he said.

“I remembered that the office on 21st Street was very nice,” he said. “I reached out, and we put a deal together.”

He said the company is also considering taking over CBHK’s former Upper West Side location at 329 Columbus Avenue at 76th Street, but the details are still being hammered out.

This will be the Bond’s sixth office, in addition to Union Square, Greenwich Village, Columbus Circle, Upper East and Tribeca locations. The company, which does both rentals and sales, is “extremely busy” despite the weak economy, Ricciotti said. The company transacted 1000 combined rentals in June and July, and put over 100 sales in contract, he said.

Bond has been able to be successful in the current economy in part because low prices are driving New Yorkers to go in search of better-priced housing, and also because Bond agents predominantly work in teams, which helps them do a higher volume of deals to make up for the lower prices, Ricciotti said.

“In high inventory markets like this one the dominance of teams is very apparent,” he said.

Meanwhile Gerage’s new commercial division has provided additional income for the company by allowing it to take on commercial business it previously referred to other firms.

“We’re firing on all pistons,” Ricciotti said.

Ricciotti noted, however, that Bond will pay less for the 21st Street space than CBHK did.

“We negotiated what we and the landlord agreed was market value for the space today,” he said, though he did not divulge the rent.

The 21st Street space was formerly occupied by Fenwick Keats Realty before it merged with Goodstein Residential in 2007.

Bond will celebrate the opening of the new office with a soiree tonight.