Sutton, Maguire in talks to sign Frye at 144 Fifth: sources

High-end leather boot retailer would replace Shoegasm on ground floor

From left: Jeff Sutton, 144 Fifth Avenue (center) in the Flatiron District, and Frye boots
From left: Jeff Sutton, 144 Fifth Avenue (center) in the Flatiron District, and Frye boots

UPDATED, 6:45 p.m., May 11: These boots are made for Sutton.

The Frye Company, a high-end leather boot retailer and manufacturer, is in late-stage negotiations to lease a ground-floor retail space at 144 Fifth Avenue, sources told The Real Deal. Jeff Sutton and partner Maguire Capital Group acquired the leasehold on the Flatiron District property less than a month ago.

The five-story mixed-use building near West 19th Street and is home to Shoegasm, Lilac Gallery and a mix of office space and apartments upstairs. Frye is in talks to replace Shoegasm, which occupies 5,000 square feet spread evenly between the lower level and ground floors.

In April, Sutton and Maguire Capital Group, a retail-focused real estate investment firm led by Victor and Marvin Azrak, bought the leasehold for an undisclosed amount. Shoegasm, which signed a 15-year lease more than three years ago, is expected to vacate in the next few months, sources said. Instead of opening an additional store, Shoegasm will consolidate at its three other locations in the city, they said.

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If the deal goes through, 144 Fifth would become Frye’s second location in the city. Its first store and current flagship is located at 113 Spring Street in Soho.

Average ground-floor retail asking rents in the area are about $500 per square foot, according to Real Estate Board of New York data. It’s unclear what Frye will pay for the space.

Jack Shaoul, owner of Universe Antiques, has owned the property for more than 30 years, property records show.

Sutton and Maguire Capital also declined to comment. The partners also teamed up to purchase a retail co-op at 85 Fifth Avenue for $86 million last year.