Construction Beat

Ivy Leaguers Soon To Dine Al Fresco at Harvard Club

27 West 44th Street

On June 12, the Harvard Club of New York will celebrate the 120th anniversary of the opening of the club’s original building at 27 West 44th Street. That date will also mark the grand opening of the club’s new rooftop bar, outdoor terrace and dining area on the ninth floor of that building.

But, the 150-year-old club is really hoping the rooftop construction will be done sooner and it can open by the middle of May, said Larry Marner of Marner Architecture, the chair of the club’s house committee, which oversaw the renovations. Read More

Sales Beat

Home to The Backroom Bar Sells for $11M

102 Norfolk Street.

Massey Knakal has arranged the sale of a mixed-use building and home to The Backroom Bar and Saro Bistro on the Lower East Side at 102 Norfolk Street for $11 million, Commercial Observer has learned.

The six-story building, located between Delancey and Rivington Streets, contains approximately 16,000 square feet, with 25 apartments on the upper floors atop the bar/restaurants, Read More

Cover Story

Midtown Caters to Hungry Office Workers, Shoppers with Proliferation of Gourmet Food Courts

Gotham West Market

Come next spring, Columbus Circle will be home to a 14,750-square-foot food market lined by 10- to 20-foot-wide open storefronts just outside of the busy subway station. On the East Side, Urban Space, the food hall manager behind Mad. Sq. Eats, Broadway Bites and Dekalb Market, recently signed a long-term lease for 10,000 square feet of retail space at the Helmsley Building at 230 Park Avenue. And late last year, Gotham Organization opened Gotham West Market, a 10,000-square-foot Chelsea Market-like food hall in Hell’s Kitchen, to considerable fanfare.

Why are so many food courts—once synonymous with suburban shopping malls and dreary office atriums—not only popping up in Midtown, but luring forward-thinking chefs and adventurous diners? Read More

Lease Beat

Pita Grill in for Five Guys at 496 LaGuardia Place

496 LaGuardia Place (center). (Credit: PropertyShark)

Pita Grill will replace burger chain Five Guys at 496 LaGuardia Place after signing a 12-year lease for a 2,700-square-foot space at the Greenwich Village property. The restaurant will be the chain’s ninth location.

The space consists of 1,350 square feet on the ground floor and 1,350 square feet on the lower level. Asking rent for the space was $120 per square foot, according to The New York Post, which first reported the lease. Read More

Lease Beat

Dewey’s Gets New Life at West 30th Street Marriott

Courtyard New York Manhattan Chelsea. (Credit: Courtyard Marriott website)

Ed Dobres, whose Dewey’s Flatiron closed earlier this year, is bringing a Dewey’s to the newly built Courtyard New York Manhattan/Chelsea, a Marriott hotel at 135 West 30th Street, Commercial Observer has learned.

The 2,850-square-foot eatery, including a 660-square-foot patio, will be a gastropub and sports bar, said SKH Realty partner Karma McDermott, who represented the landlords, Altitude Capital and Flintlock Construction, in the deal. SKH’s Shane Davis and Matthew Strombelline represented Mr. Dobres. Read More

Cool Treats

It’s Official: Dairy Queen to Open in NYC in May


Dairy Queen will open its first Manhattan location at 54 West 14th Street this spring, the Berkshire Hathaway company announced today. The company is targeting an opening in mid- to late May, according to a spokesperson.

The New York “DQ Grill & Chill” location will be the Edina, Minnesota-based company’s first two-story restaurant, according to a press release. The 2,500-square-foot location will feature 60 seats on the downstairs level and 50 seats upstairs. Read More

Lease Beat

Mezzogiorno Brothers Opening Sister Restaurant Near Columbia

2791 Broadway

The owners of Soho Italian eatery Mezzogiorno are going to be opening an Italian restaurant uptown late this summer, in what the lone broker in the deal called “more of this uptown march of downtown restaurants,” Commercial Observer has learned.

The broker, Rafe Evans of Walker, Malloy & Company, said as of now there is no Italian restaurant north of 103rd Street on Broadway. Read More

Lease Beat

Starbucks Leaves Grand Central for 425 Lexington

Getty Images

Having lost its 800-square-foot space in Grand Central Terminal’s Lexington Passage, Starbucks will be moving across the street. The coffee purveyor has signed a 15-year lease for a 1,300-square-foot retail space at 425 Lexington Avenue, Commercial Observer has learned.

Starbucks closed its Lexington Passage location earlier this month after losing out to Cafe Grumpy in the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s RFP process. The MTA has shifted its focus away from national chains and toward locally-owned businesses. Read More

Lease Beat

CVS Renews Whitestone Lease

CVS Pharmacy at Francis Lewis Boulevard Shopping Center (Credit: Muss Development)

CVS Pharmacy has signed a long-term renewal for its 13,500-square-foot space at Muss Development’s Francis Lewis Boulevard Shopping Center in Whitestone, Queens, Commercial Observer has learned.

The nation’s largest pharmacy chain has operated a branch at the Queens shopping center since 2002 and may soon have a new neighbor there. Muss Development has plans to upgrade the tenancy of a 4,000-square-foot space adjacent to the CVS location once it becomes available in the second quarter, according to a press release. Read More

Lease Beat

Kobeyaki Takes Space on UES

215 East 86th Street

Fast-causal Japanese restaurant Kobeyaki will be coming to East 86th Street, Commercial Observer has learned.

Kobeyaki, which has a tagline of “rolls, bowls, burders & buns,” rented 1,700 square feet (plus a full basement) at 215 East 86th Street for a bit less than the $29,000-per-month asking rent, according to the lone broker in the deal, Rafe Evans of Walker, Malloy & Company. Read More

Food & Drink

Mighty Quinn’s Takes West Village Space


Fast casual barbecue restaurant Mighty Quinn’s will be expanding to the West Village after signing a long-term, 2,760-square-foot lease at 75 Greenwich Avenue.

The space, formerly occupied by Bone Lick BBQ, will be designed in the image of Mighty Quinn’s East Village flagship at 103 Second Avenue. Read More

Lease Beat

Juice Press to Move Production and Distribution to Falchi Building

The Falchi Building at 31-00 47th Avenue in Long Island City.

Rapidly expanding raw juice and smoothie bar Juice Press has signed a 10-year, 13,459-square-foot lease on the ground floor of Jamestown PropertiesFalchi Building, Commercial Observer has learned.

The company will consolidate its production and distribution to the Long Island City building from two Manhattan retail locations. The ground floor space includes access to a loading dock, which will ease the delivery of fresh produce, according to the tenant brokers.  Read More

Lease Beat

Food Hall Coming to 230 Park Avenue

230 Park Avenue.

Urban Space, the food hall manager behind Mad. Sq. Eats, Broadway Bites and Dekalb Market, has signed a long-term lease for 10,000 square feet of retail space at 230 Park Avenue.

The tenant is expected to transform 230 Park Avenue’s pedestrian passageway into a showcase for between 20 and 30 chefs and food purveyors. Eldon Scott, president of Urban Space, told The New York Times the food hall will open in approximately one year. Read More

Lease Beat

Shake Shack Expands at 24-32 Union Square East


Shake Shack has expanded its office space at 24-32 Union Square East by 5,739 square feet, taking the entire 10,660-square-foot fifth floor of the building.

Danny Meyer, the restaurateur behind the popular burger chain, operates his Union Square Hospitality Group from the 12-story office building, which is located within walking distance of Shake Shack’s original location in Madison Square Park.  Read More

On the Market

Junior’s Brooklyn Location on the Block

Junior's at 386

Junior’s Most Fabulous Cheesecake and Desserts has put its 386 Flatbush Avenue Extension location in Downtown Brooklyn on the market.

The site boasts 102,500 buildable square feet and is expected to be converted into a luxury residential building by the eventual buyer with a Junior’s location returning to the base of the property. In the meantime, Junior’s is looking for temporary space to relocate the business while simultaneously exploring a second permanent Brooklyn location. Read More