Sales Beat

Sale of Florio’s Building in Little Italy Sets the Scene for New Restaurant

Marcus & Millichap has arranged the $5.35 million sale of a four-story mixed-use building at 192 Grand Street in Little Italy, home to the former Florio’s Ristorante & Cocktail Lounge and slated for a new restaurant, The Commercial Observer has learned.

“There’s a very short supply of this type of asset in this neighborhood,” said Scott Edelstein, who represented the seller and longtime owner of the building, and procured the buyer, with Peter Von Der Ahe and Michael Helpern.

Building PhotoSeveral twists and turns led to the sale, after the original ownership of the building, which was in place for decades, was forced to recently close the restaurant.

Ownership had leased out the Florio’s several years ago to a new restaurant operator but reclaimed the restaurant over a year ago after their displeasure with the new restaurateur’s handling of the business, which had been in place since 1960.

“They harmed the brand in the estimation of the seller so the original owners took back the business,” Mr. Edelstein said.

It was too late, however, and unable to revive the ailing brand, the building owner closed Florio’s and decided to sell the building.

“After floundering for over a year without us, we were able to create a competitive bid and at the end of the day the seller really benefited from that process,” Mr. Edelstein said.

Mr. Edelstein said his team procured a potential buyer within 60 days of receiving the exclusive assignment, but the initial deal fell through when that buyer tried to reduce the price when signing the purchase and sale, which he speculated was a stalling tactic resulting from their inability to secure a retail tenant in time for the close date.

A bidding war ensued, he said, garnering $100,000 more than the price that the previous potential buyer had originally agreed to.

The undisclosed buyer and new owner plans to open a new restaurant in its place, though the small investment entity was tight-lipped regarding the type of restaurant it plans to open and its anticipated opening date.

The landmarked building also features four residential, market rate, month-to-month units, in addition to the now-vacant restaurant space, with tenants who will remain in place at the request of previous ownership.

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