Rockrose’s Water Street officially goes rental

By Candace Taylor | July 22, 2009 09:07AM

Henry Elghanayan and 200 Water Street

The blogosphere recently leaked the news that Rockrose Development would be turning former New York University dorm Water Street into luxury rentals.

Rockrose has now officially announced the start of rentals at the building, located at 200 Water Street between John and Fulton streets at South Street Seaport. The announcement makes clear that 200 Water Street will remain in the hands of Rockrose founder Henry Elghanayan, the eldest of three brothers who have run the company for years.

The two younger Elghanayan brothers announced in April that they would leave Rockrose to form TF Cornerstone, prompting speculation about how the companies would divvy up their real estate portfolio.

Up until May, 200 Water Street housed about 1,200 NYU upperclassmen and faculty. In a statement released today, Rockrose said rents for the 576 newly renovated apartments will start at $2,045 for studios, $2,470 for one-bedroom units, and $3,715 for two-bedroom apartments.  The company is offering two months free rent, according to the Web site.

Owned and managed by Rockrose since 1997, Water Street was built as an office building in 1971 and converted into apartments in 1988. For the past 10 years, until the end of last semester, it has been leased by NYU, which announced in 2005 it would vacate the building and build a new dorm on 12th Street. At the time, there was speculation that 200 Water Street would become luxury condos.

The building, which overlooks South Street Seaport, will continue to offer a fitness center and a television lounge, amenities it had when it was a dorm. A 33rd-floor rooftop terrace, slated for completion in August, will have chaises, card tables, cabanas with sunshades, a BBQ grill and WiFi access, Rockrose said.

“To cool off, residents can pull a chain off the roof’s water tower to turn on a waterfall shower,” the statement from Rockrose said.

But that’s not the only creative amenity.

As Grub Street first reported, 200 Water Street residents will get free delivery and line-cutting privileges at the new Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, opening next door at Rockrose-owned 135 John Street. This is the first Manhattan location for the Brooklyn-based pizzeria.