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The Editors

Lease Beat

Evercore Grabs More Space on East 52nd Street

Courtesy of Agorafy

Independent investment banking advisory firm Evercore Partners has signed a lease to expand its offices in New York. 

The firm, which advises clients on mergers, acquisitions, public offerings and other strategic transactions, will add 30,356 square feet to its New York presence, taking the entire 11th floor and a portion of the 12th floor at 40 East 52nd Street. Move-in is expected later this summer. The deal spans the next nine years.  Read More

Mortgage Observer

So They Say: Blackstone’s Jonathan Gray Talks Crisis Opportunity and Global Expansion

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Speculation has continued to build that Blackstone Group’s 43-year-old global head of real estate, Jonathan Gray, may well take over for the private equity firm’s CEO Stephen Schwarzman or President and Chief Operating Officer Hamilton “Tony” James should either retire in the near future. Mortgage Observer looks back on some rare quotes the media-shy billionaire has provided to the media—most of them in mid-2013. Read More

The Party Circuit

The Party Circuit: Prince Realty Advisors’ Pre-Valentine’s Day Cocktail Party

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Prince Realty Advisors' Pre-Valentine's Day Cocktail Party

Real estate investment brokerage and capital markets group Prince Realty Advisors, which calls itself a “matchmaker” for its clients, hosted a “pre-Valentine’s Day cocktail party,” on February 11. Celebrating the firm’s clients and colleagues, party attendees gathered at the Hudson Bond, at 215 West 40th Street, in which Prince Realty’s founder and principal, David Ash, is an investor. Mr. Ash, who brokered the nearly $280 million purchase of the Beatrice in Chelsea last year, said that Brooklyn was pretty mainstream now, noting that the borough is “not a fad any longer.” In attendance were Prince Realty’s Kyle Stein, who was recently named managing director of the firm’s debt and equity division (as Commercial Observer reported), and Simon Ziff, the president of financial brokerage Ackman-Ziff, which arranged a $255 million refinancing of Milford Plaza hotel in 2013

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The Party Circuit

Northwood Investors Mansion On Madison Party

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Northwood Investors Mansion On Madison Party

The 26,190-square-foot Mansion on Madison, formerly the Villard Mansion, was reintroduced to the real estate industry last week. Previously railroad tycoon Henry Villard’s mansion, the grand residence at the New York Palace Hotel is being transformed by owners Northwood Investors. Marketed as a flagship retail location or a unique corporate office, the Mansion on Madison drew a large crowd last Thursday night for a “Midwinter’s Bash.” Jedd Nero, the executive vice president of retail services at CBRE, was on hand to point out some of the building’s more unique features. Read More

The Party Circuit

The Party Circuit: Douglas Elliman Broker Viewing of 50 United Nations Plaza

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Douglas Elliman Broker Viewing Of 50 United Nations Plaza

Zeckendorf Development hosted a Douglas Elliman broker viewing of 50 United Nations Plaza, on January 22, 2014. The 88 luxury condominium residences are located at East 46th and First Avenue adjacent to Dag Hammarskjold Plaza and one block north of the United Nations Secretariat building. Fifty UN Plaza is the first residential tower in the United States designed by Foster + Partners. The event was held at the sales office, located at 866 United Nations Plaza and designed by the renowned firm of Gabellini Sheppard. Read More

REBNY 2014

The Party Circuit: 118th Annual REBNY Banquet

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REBNY 118th Annual Award Banquet

The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) rolled out the red carpet for its 118th annual banquet held at the New York Hilton on January 16. The exclusive event, touted as the industry’s most important networking event of the year, drew in many of New York City’s most influential industry leaders, elected officials and hundreds of the city’s top real estate professionals to celebrate 2013’s accomplishments and opine on the outlook for 2014, which promises to be another exciting year in real estate. Award winners at this year’s REBNY banquet were: Stephen L. Green, Chairman of the Board, SL Green Realty Corp.; Kenneth Fisher, Senior Partner of Fisher Brothers; Joel I. Picket, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Gotham Organization, Inc.; Robin Abrams, Executive Vice President of The Lansco Corporation; Thomas L. Hill, Senior Vice President of Boston Properties’ New York Property Management Department; and Robert C. Fink, Director of Leasing for The Winter Organization. 

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REBNY 2014

Home Sweet REBNY

217 Broadway for Commercial Observer

In its 118 years of existence as an industry powerhouse, the Real Estate Board of New York has called just six addresses home. Here are REBNY’s current and former headquarters, and a brief look at the history that was made in them. Read More

Mortgage Observer

The Scheme of Things: January Mortgage Charts

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January 2014’s data reflects mortgages recorded by the New York City Department of Finance as this issue was going to press. Despite several factors, among them the regular end of the year rush and the chatter around commercial real estate’s reaction to a de Blasio mayoralty, activity slowed between October and November 2013. Read More

The Plan

The Plan: 135 Seventh Avenue South/163 West 10th Street

135 Seventh Ave New Flyer- Ground Floor Retail 11.22

Vacant for more than a year, two adjacent West Village retail spaces have hit the market at 135 Seventh Avenue South and 163 West 10th Street. Formerly the home of an Italian bakery, Landbrot Bakery & Bar, that “thrived for 15 years,” according to the listing’s broker, and a barbershop, each space has the opportunity to be reinvented by tenants, including possible restaurants. Initially envisioned for a single tenant, the individual spaces have since been subdivided to accommodate separate occupants. Tom Brady of Town spoke to The Commercial Observer last week about the opportunities. Read More

Postings

All of the Lights: Famous Illuminated Signs in the New York City Skyline

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In the lead-up to New Year’s Eve last week, The New Yorker reported that the largely vacant 1 Times Square—the home of the ball drop—makes $23 million, or 85 percent of its annual revenue, from advertising signage that bathes Times Square in a neon commercial glow. Signage is a sought-after prize of the New York skyline. Here are a few of the most famous illuminated signs around town. Read More