Thor facing foreclosure at Theater District building

Joe Sitt’s firm had planned to open Sammy Hagar-founded restaurant at location

Oct.October 21, 2019 02:15 PM
Thor Equities' Joe Sitt and 725 8th Avenue (Credit: Google Maps)

Thor Equities’ Joe Sitt and 725 8th Avenue (Credit: Google Maps)

Thor Equities may not get the chance to rock out with Sammy Hagar after all.

Joe Sitt’s firm is facing foreclosure proceedings in its Theater District building at 725 Eighth Avenue, where it had planned to open the first East Coast location of Cabo Wabo Cantina, a restaurant founded by Hagar.

Lender Wilmington Trust filed suit to foreclose on the property on Tuesday. The bank claims that Thor took out an $11 million loan on 725 Eighth Avenue in 2016 that was due to mature in 2026. Instead, Wilmington Trust claims, Thor missed a roughly $67,000 monthly payment on it in July and has not made any additional payments since then.

Wilmington sent Thor a notice of default in September, but the company did not respond to or comply with the notice, court papers say. The bank is thus entitled to foreclose on the property and has asked the court to make Thor sell it, according to the lawsuit.

Representatives for Thor and Wilmington Trust did not respond to requests for comment.

According to Trepp, a database that tracks commercial mortgage backed-securities deals, the $11 million loan was transferred to special servicing in August due to payment default.

“Per Borrower, the single tenant is in default under its lease,” the commentary from the special servicer reads. “Borrower has indicated it will likely put forth a workout proposal of some kind, but nothing received by special servicer to date.”

Thor bought the retail condo at 725 Eighth Avenue in 2013 for $13 million. It previously leased the space to Mark Wahlberg’s burger joint Wahlburgers, but the restaurant was struggling to make rent at the building and abandoned plans to open a spot there last spring. The real estate firm then announced last October that it would lease the retail space to Hagar’s Cabo Wabo Cantina.

The building is not the only location where Thor is experiencing problems. Marx Realty just evicted the company from its ground lease at 545 Madison Avenue last week over $554,583 in unpaid rent and $1.6 million in outstanding real estate taxes. Earlier this year, a special servicer took over Thor’s defaulted $36 million loan at 115 Mercer Street, where the firm was negotiating a lease with retailer The Kooples.

In August, Thor launched a new business, ThorLogis, with plans to spend $900 million on buying and developing industrial properties.

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