Blackstone and Fairstead shooting high to sell Caiola buildings

Eight UES properties have asking prices as high as $945 a foot

344 East 63rd Street, Blackstone's Jonathan Gray, CBRE's Stephen Siegel and 266 East 78th Street
From left: 344 East 63rd Street, Blackstone's Jonathan Gray, Fairstead's Stephen Siegel and 266 East 78th Street

Blackstone Group and Fairstead Capital are looking to sell a chunk of the 24-building Caiola portfolio in Manhattan, with asking prices as high as $945 per square foot.

The firm recently retained Cushman & Wakefield to market eight Upper East Side rental properties with a total of 219 apartments, according to an offering memorandum obtained by The Real Deal. The average asking price per square foot for six of the buildings is roughly $803. The other two buildings don’t have a formal price tag, but the average indicates a potential overall ask for the eight-building package of about $175 million.

Blackstone and Fairstead bought the Caiola family’s 24-building multifamily portfolio across Chelsea, Murray Hill and the Upper East Side for $690 million, or about $860 per square foot, in 2015. Just months after the purchase, in 2016, they began quietly shopping four buildings. They have since sold two properties to A.D. Real Estate Investors for a combined $79.5 million in separate deals.

In February, the firms made a push to rebrand the remaining 22 buildings as luxury properties, renaming them Array Rentals and hiring MNS to handle leasing for all vacancies.

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Unlike many of Blackstone’s other multifamily acquisitions, which are touted are long-term plays, these assets are part of an opportunistic vehicle largely reserved for the private equity giant’s short-term holds, sources said.

The properties are 341 East 62nd Street ($12.9 million), 244 East 75th Street ($17.85 million), 266 East 78th Street ($27.25 million), 1665 First Avenue ($8.6 million), 402 East 83rd Street ($14.8 million), 312 East 85th Street ($11.45 million), 344 East 63rd Street and 1485 First Avenue. The 63rd Street property is the largest of the eight, at nearly 82,000 square feet. The 28,823-square-foot property on East 78th Street is asking $945 a foot, the documents show.

A Cushman team led by Bob Knakal, Adam Spies, Thomas Gammino and Clint Olsen is marketing the buildings.

Representatives for Blackstone, Fairstead and Cushman declined to comment.

Earlier this summer, Fairstead acquired 42 Section 8 buildings in Sunset Park from E&M Associates.