The Collective acquires Paper Factory Hotel in Queens

It's the British co-living company's third New York acquisition
By Will Parker | March 19, 2019 08:00AM

Reza Merchant and the Paper Factory Hotel

London-based co-living company the Collective has purchased the 125-key Paper Factory Hotel in Long Island City, the company announced Monday.

The plan is to convert the hotel at 37-06 36th Street into a “short-stay” co-living arrangement, for stays between one and 29 days, according to company spokesperson Samantha Garfield.

The Collective declined to provide a sales price, but a press release stated that the sale brought the company’s total New York property investments to $150 million, strongly suggesting the Paper Factory Hotel would have sold for around $60 million.

All guests will have “full access to the co-living experience,” Garfield said, which includes social and cultural events and flexible communal spaces. The company eventually plans to add an extra 100 units for more conventional co-living by building additional floors on top of the five-story property.

Queens builder Gal Sela developed the hotel at the site of a former paper factory just four years ago. A representative for Sela’s namesake firm was not immediately available to comment.

The Collective, founded by now 30-year-old Reza Merchant in 2010 while he was still a student, made its first splash in New York last fall when it announced it would build a 500-unit co-living building at 555 Broadway in East Williamsburg. Last month, it acquired the Slave Theatre at 1215 Fulton Street, where it also has plans to develop co-living apartments. It paid $32.5 million for the historic theater.

The company’s 546-unit Old Oak Common in London, a project developed in 2014, remains one of the largest co-living communities in the world. Last year the company bought out its partner in the building in a deal that valued the property at approximately $165 million.