More than 900 real estate pros on the corporate-tenant side of the business spent a night at the museum Thursday evening as they enjoyed dinner and a few childhood memories at the American Museum of Natural History.
Heads of real estate from companies such as JPMorgan, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Thomson Reuters mingled with their counterparts at various brokerage, design and architectural firms for the annual dinner gala hosted by CoreNet NYC, the local chapter of the global trade organization for corporate real estate.
Set among the dramatic architecture of the museum’s Theodore Roosevelt Rotunda and the dioramas of the Akeley Hall of African Mammals, attendees schmoozed at cocktail hour before heading downstairs to dinner underneath the famous, 94-foot-long blue whale replica in the Milstein Family Hall of Ocean Life.
More than a few guests stopped to snap selfies on their way down through the Hall of Biodiversity.
Dale Schlather, vice-chair at Cushman & Wakefield and a former chair of CoreNet NYC, said he decided a few years ago during the depths of the recession to relocate the annual gala from Chelsea Piers as a way to boost morale.
“We had reserves for a rainy day,” he recalled. “So I said, ‘Guess what? It’s raining.’”
Whereas the Real Estate Board of New York has historically represented the interests of landlords, CoreNet trains its attention on those on the other side of the corporate real estate deal.
“The taxes, the rent – they’re paid here,” Schlather said. “They pay the mortgages too.”