Catsimatidis gets $153M refi on Coney Island apartment towers

Bank of America led financing on Ocean Drive project, which billionaire developer says is 98% leased

John Catsimatidis and 3514 Surf Avenue (Google Maps)
John Catsimatidis and 3514 Surf Avenue (Google Maps)

John Catsimatidis has refinanced his glassy new apartment buildings looming above Coney Island.

The billionaire Red Apple Group CEO landed a $153 million loan from Bank of America and Santander Bank for his dual-towered development, known as Ocean Drive, at 3514 Surf Avenue.

Catismatidis told The Real Deal that with interest rates climbing, he opted for a short-term loan rather than getting locked in for the next 10 years.

“We think interest rates are going to come down from where they are now,” he said.

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The new financing replaces a $130 million construction loan that Bank of America and Santander Bank provided the project. Red Apple Group began construction on the 22-story, 450-unit mixed-use oceanfront oceanfront project in 2018, and Catsimatidis said it’s now about 98 percent leased.

In addition to paying off the construction loan, the refinancing allowed Red Apple to take proceeds out of it.

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It’s a particularly challenging time for borrowers to secure financing as interest rates have risen dramatically in recent weeks. The volatile environment has led many financing deals to fall apart.

Catsimatidis has said he’d like to build three more towers in Coney Island, but that he’ll take his business to Florida if the city doesn’t approve his plans.