The Cipriani family, owners of the famed eponymous restaurant, plans to open its first New York City hotel at the South Street Seaport later this year, ending speculation over the fate of the property at 33 Peck Slip.
The 66-key hotel, dubbed Mr. C Seaport, is being developed by Bob Ghassemieh and Alex Ghassemieh — the same duo behind the Mr. C Beverly Hills, which debuted the Mr. C Hotels brand in 2011. Just like the Beverly Hills location, the Seaport hotel will be operated by brothers Ignazio and Maggio Cipriani.
“After many years of searching for the appropriate location and opportunity within New York City, we are pleased to continue the growth of the Mr. C Hotel brand with our partners,” Bob Ghassemieh said in a statement. “The rebirth taking place in the Seaport District as a dining, retail and entertainment destination makes it the perfect home for Mr. C’s only New York hotel.”
The property is majority owned by an affiliate of California-based Atlantic Pearl, run by the Ghassamiehs. In December 2015, several reports named Howard Hughes Corp. as the property’s new owner, buying the Best Western Hotel for $38.3 million through a bankruptcy auction. But the publicly-traded company actually owns 35 percent of the property. As of December, Howard Hughes invested a total of $8.5 million in the joint venture, according to its latest filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Gemini Real Estate Advisors auctioned off the property along with two others after filing for bankruptcy in September 2015. Before the auction, DNAinfo reported that the Cipriani family was eying Gemini’s Best Western on Peck Slip for a possible new Mr. C location. But after the auction, and news that Howard Hughes purchased the property surfaced, the future of the hotel became unclear. Howard Hughes has remained tight-lipped about the property, only saying in recent filings that the hotel was closed in December 2016 for redevelopment.
Danish architect Thomas Juul-Hansen is designing the hotel, which will include a Cipriani restaurant.
Howard Hughes is leading the charge in redeveloping the Seaport, where it controls portions of seven buildings, including the massive Pier 17. The company is in the process of building a new 300,000-square-foot shopping mall where Jean-Georges Vongerichten and the Momofuku Group are opening restaurants.