ICSC 2013

Minute By Minute: The First Day and a Half at the International Council of Shopping Centers RECon Expo


On Sunday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber made the fans squeal and the paparazzi snap. But just off the strip, at the Las Vegas Convention Center, the real action got underway with the start of RECon. Below, The Commercial Observer’s
reconnaissance work at The Global Real Estate Convention, where 35,000 registered attendees are helping to shape the future of retail real estate. Read More

A Boom With a View

Empire State Building, 30 Rock Battle for Big Observatory Bucks; 1 WTC May Top Both

Coco Jones, on top of the world.

The view from the Empire State Building observation deck was especially expansive on March 13, with crystal-clear skies hovering over the five boroughs, New Jersey and, visible to the north, Westchester County. Yet Coco Jones briefly dominated the panorama.

Ms. Jones, 15, was perched, alone, on the southeastern corner of the deck. The Disney Channel alumna—she appeared on the cable network’s short-lived sketch comedy series So Random!—had released her debut EP, Made Of, the previous day. And although its lead single, “Holla at the DJ,” had yet to chart on Billboard’s Hot 100, Ms. Jones was ready to celebrate its release on the Empire State’s Building’s 86th floor. Read More


Joe Chetrit Sues Former Ownership Group at Chelsea Hotel

Joe Chetrit (Credit: Mathew Katz/DNAinfo)

As if the image of a potentially shirtless Justin Bieber stumbling into Chelsea wasn’t enough for Joe Chetrit to handle, the real estate mogul has now filed a lawsuit claiming he was duped out of millions by the Chelsea Hotel’s former owners.

Mr. Chetrit filed a lawsuit in the State Supreme Court alleging that the former ownership group “deliberately lied” about the status of tenants and deceived him into believing that valuable artwork – and a “closet” – on the premises was included as part of his purchase of the property in 2011, Curbed reported.

“Had plaintiff known of defendants’ fraud regarding the artwork and apartment units, plaintiff never would have paid $78.5 million for the purchase of the Chelsea Hotel,” the lawsuit states, calling the actions “outrageous, fraudulent, shocking to the consequence and deliberate.” Read More

Barclays Center: From Eminent Domain to Deron Williams

Toronto Raptors v Brooklyn Nets

“It was intended to be iconic,” MaryAnne Gilmartin said of the Barclays Center’s façade of undulating rusted steel just three months after the wildly controversial arena opened its doors.

But while the arena’s architecture aimed to lodge itself in the public consciousness, the Atlantic Yards development project, of which Barclays is the preening firstborn child, couldn’t have anticipated the discord it would ignite in the Brooklyn neighborhoods it promised to reactivate. Read More