From stone emerged brick, from brick came steel. Glass and steel followed. Now, simple glass design takes shape across the city.
Is it just a cool design, or a window into a future society; a tale from a science fiction novel, as glass cubes spring up across the city, mimicking the transparency of our lives. Read More
iLevel Solutions has subleased an 11,000-square-foot portion of Forest Electric’s space on the fourth floor of 2 Penn Plaza, the companies announced this morning.
The deal represents the firm’s first foray into the New York City office market, a push to grow and expand beyond its second offices in New Jersey.
“iLevel Solutions needed more space for staff to develop innovative software and support top tier customers,” said Ted Rotante, an executive managing director with Colliers International, who represented Forest Electric with Ernest DeLucia and James Marcellino, in a prepared statement. “The iLevel team wanted office space consistent with a technology company culture while also affording a convenient commute.”
Bad breath. Body odor. Too many columns.
Al Jazeera reportedly eyed the former New York Times building at 229 West 43rd Street as a potential headquarters for its expanding U.S. operations, but the news agency may have been turned off when it saw “too many columns,” The Wall Street Journal reported today.
Though the building has drawn interest from numerous tech and creative firms, which place great value on lofty, open workspaces, even a single column can pose a big problem for large TV studios.
“Most studios require large areas of column free space, in addition to high ceilings,” Jason Schwartzenberg, a corporate managing director at Studley who focuses on creative tenants, told The Commercial Observer.
This week, as brokers and retailers descend upon Manhattan for the International Council of Shopping Centers’ conference in New York, retail consultants John Harding and Richard Cohan, of the 34th Street Partnership, will be meeting with eight to 10 representatives of brands, restaurants and stores each day to convince them to seek locations in the 34th Street area. Given the retail and brand presence already in place along the retail corridor, they may not have to try very hard.
Mr. Cohan, one of the organization’s retail specialists, lists B&H, Gap, Victoria’s Secret, H&M, Foot Locker and Zara as brands that have found a home in the area. There are also newcomers—Joe Fresh and Vince Camuto have set up shop between Seventh and Eighth Avenues, and Timberland landed in the area last year, as did Uniqlo.
The International Council of Shopping Centers landed in New York at the Hilton yesterday morning for Day 1 of its two-day New York National Conferences. Keynote addresses were made, palms were greased and rubbery chicken was endured, as attendees shuffled between booths set up by retailers and brokerage firms ranging from A&G Realty Partners to Zinburger Frozen Yogurt.
After the jump, The Commercial Observer’s Billy Gray joins, and attempts to stay above, the fray.
Blackstone Group’s Brixmor, the second-largest owner of U.S. neighborhood shopping centers, has obtained a $90 million mortgage from Goldman Sachs Mortgage Company on three malls located in New Jersey, California and Illinois.
The 330,000-square-foot Shoppes at Cinnaminson, in Riverton, N.J., is 86 percent occupied with tenants such as Shoprite, Ross Dress for Less and Burlington. It was refinanced with a mortgage loan of $31.3 million.
Midtown is starting to matter again.
At least that’s the view to take from commercial real estate deals like Japanese financial firm Nomura Holding’s $60-per-square-foot, 20-year lease for a plush 47-story headquarters at 825 Eighth Avenue.
The arrival of a Japanese multinational at the Worldwide Plaza property embodies the roller-coaster ride of the Midtown office market over the past five years. It was bought by Harry Macklowe for $1.7 billion in 2007, only to be sold at a 60 percent discount two years later in a fire sale that saw George Comfort & Sons snatch it up for $600 million in 2009 when the building was half vacant.
Retail Lease Beat
Nordstrom Rack is reportedly in talks to snap up the 36,000 square foot Bryant Park retail space that is currently housing an NFL pop-up store.
The retail space at 1095 Avenue of the Americas, an office tower owned by the Blackstone Group, has been used as a pop-up store by Dylan’s Candy Bar and now the NFL, which is occupying the space in part to countdown its upcoming NFL Draft.
The National Football League has tackled a 36,000 square foot pop-up store at 1095 Avenue of the Americas in time for its upcoming 2012 NFL Draft.
The space will be part “experience” and part retail, according to those close to the deal. From April 2 to April 30th, football fans will be able to purchase merchandise from NFL licensees like Nike, New Era, Under Armour, Wilson, and others.
It was lunchtime at Casa Lever, the high-end restaurant in the iconic Lever House, and Richard Baxter was on his BlackBerry negotiating.
It was a busy year for Mr. Baxter and his colleagues at Jones Lang LaSalle. His four-man team comprised some of the city’s most prominent brokers of large-scale commercial office buildings, and as the Manhattan sales market’s post-recessionary thaw continues, Mr. Baxter estimated that the group had tallied an impressive $1.3 billion in deals this year.
Three days before Christmas, however, it wasn’t one particular skyscraper Mr. Baxter was bargaining over from his plum seat at Casa Lever. In a year-end rush, his group had loose ends to tie up, deals to close and transactions still in the works. And so, on this particular Thursday amid a bustling lunch crowd, Mr. Baxter was not negotiating with a buyer or a building owner, but rather one of his own assistants, whom he was asking to stay late to receive critical documents and to help get the team through the rest of the day.
On Tuesday, The Observer reported Tony James had bought a duplex at 834 Fifth, that godly Upper East Side edifice. Perhaps it was a present to himself for how well The Blackstone Group, which he has run for the past few years alongside Steve Schwarzman, is now doing.
The Waldorf-Astoria has lost some of its Jazz Age luster, growing rumpled and maybe even a little racist in old age. The hotel was purchased four years ago by Blackstone for $572 million, part of a $26 billion deal to buy up the Hilton chain. Now the monolithic investment outfit is prepared to spruce up the Walfdorf-Astoria, the Post reports.
According to the tab, Blackstone plans to spend “hundreds of millions of dollars” renovating the hotel, once home to mobsters Bugsy Siegel and Lucky Luciano and jazz singer Cole Porter, as well as the eponymous salad.