A week of wild behavior in real estate
Garlick thinks he's still a contender at the Flatiron building, billionaires and BFFs on the Supreme Court, and more
“Nobody knows anybody. Not that well.” — Tom Reagan, “Miller’s Crossing”
In the mid-1990s, a man by the name of John Spano tried to buy the New York Islanders even though he didn’t have nearly enough money to pull off the transaction.
There are at least shades of that story in Jacob Garlick — the mystery man who prevailed at auction for the iconic but dilapidated Flatiron Building with an eye watering $190 million bid, only to fail to come up with the 10 percent down payment — who claims he still wants to buy the property.
The problem is, even though his behavior doesn’t appear to rise to the level of criminality, he seems to be the only person who believes he can.
“Why would you take anything he is saying seriously?” GFP Real Estate’s Jeffrey Gural, who has held a stake in the office building and was the runner-up in last month’s auction, said.
Meanwhile, real estate mogul Patrick Carroll apparently let his emotions get the best of him when he allegedly spat on a manager of a trendy restaurant in Wynwood following a dustup over a woman.
A video shared with TRD shows the real estate executive, head of Atlanta-based multifamily developer Carroll Organization, walk up to the manager. Carroll then appears to spit in his face. The incident occurred after the manager, Miguel Angel Weill, prevented Carroll from hitting on a woman at a nearby table, Weill said in an interview.
While a police report wasn’t filed, Carroll is reportedly no longer welcome at the eatery.
Moving up the mogul ranks, Harlan Crow, the son of Dallas real estate giant Trammell Crow, bought a home in Savannah, Georgia, from Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in 2014.
The revelation troubled legal experts.
“Given the role Crow has played in subsidizing the lifestyle of Thomas and his wife, you have to wonder if this was an effort to put cash in their pockets,” Virginia Canter, a former government ethics lawyer, told ProPublica.
The revelation came after ProPublica reported last week that Crow for years had provided Thomas with lavish gifts — including trips worth hundreds of thousands of dollars — which Thomas failed to disclose pursuant to federal law.
And, yes, sometimes the unthinkable spills over to actual real estate.
In San Francisco, Salesforce is having its workers leave the remaining 104,000 square feet of offices it has at Salesforce East, a 30-story office tower at 350 Mission Street, the San Francisco Business Times reported.
The tech firm will sublease the space, about 10 years removed from having leased the entire 450,000-square-foot building. Overally, the company has shed more than 1 million square feet of office space in the city since the pandemic.
In Florida, trophy mansions are still fetching a pretty penny, but the pandemic price balloon may have popped, with a decline in overall sales that has led to price cuts.
“There’s no question that many sellers had expectations of the Covid boom in price increases,” said Mike Pappas, CEO of the brokerage Keyes Group of Companies. “That now is not there. Reality is making them make the adjustment to the current market pricing.”
Buyers are reportedly being encouraged to make offers below asking, which allows sellers to save face by not cutting their listing prices.
COMPANIES AND PEOPLE