Extell makes its Diamond District hotel official

Developer filed plans for 534-room hotel on West 48th Street

Extell Development's Gary Barnett and 32 West 48th Street (Google Maps)
Extell Development's Gary Barnett and 32 West 48th Street (Google Maps)

Hotels have faced their fair share of trouble during the pandemic, with some defaulting on their loans and others shutting down for good. But Extell Development is pressing on with its plans for a huge Midtown hotel regardless.

The development firm has filed a permit application with the city’s Department of Buildings for a 168,897-square-foot hotel at 32 West 48th Street in the Diamond District. Pincus first reported the news.

Extell did not respond to a request for comment prior to publication.

Extell has been working on the hotel project for several years now, and closed on the four-story former home of the Plaza Arcade diamond mini-mall in 2018 for $40 million. The company also snapped up the air rights for several adjacent properties, with the goal of building a huge hotel that would connect West 47th and 48th Streets.

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According to the plans on file with DOB, the hotel will stand 33 stories, or 456 feet. Retail space will be available in the cellar and ground floor of the new building, along with a lobby and a fitness center. Rooms will start on the fourth floor through the 30th floor. SLCE Architects is listed as the architect of record.

The developer has been embroiled in lawsuits over the site: In November, Extell sued Elo Realty Group, which owns a building at 29 West 47th Street, alleging that it hasn’t been given access to the property to begin construction on the hotel.

“It has become quite evident that [Elo] will delay any access, and the negotiation of a fair access agreement, in the hope that forcing [Extell] to delay its project due to the lack of access granted by [Elo] will result in more favorable terms – more money and more property,” the developer said in an affidavit filed with the lawsuit.