Aareal Capital Funds Olmstead’s Latest Garment District Buy

240 West 40th Street.

Aareal Capital Corporation provided a $60 million loan to New York-based Olmstead Properties and the green real estate firm Jonathan Rose Companies to help fund their purchase of a 12-story office and retail building at 240 West 40th Street, Commercial Observer has learned.

The new owners bought the roughly 160,000-square-foot Garment District building from a partnership between AEW Capital Management and the rapidly growing real estate services firm DTZ for $85 million on May 5. Read More

Lease Beat

French Tech Firm To Open First U.S. Office [Updated]

535 Eighth Avenue

French digital human resources form company PeopleDoc is currently moving into its first U.S. office in the Garment District through a 5-year, 6,232-square-foot sublease in Olmstead Properties535 Eighth Avenue, ABS Partners Real Estate announced yesterday.

The firm will take space vacated by Adelhardt Construction Corp. in the construction company’s move downtown to 1 Pennsylvania Plaza, as the tech firm will occupy the entire 18th floor of the 21-story building between West 36th Street and West 37th Street with asking rents in the $40s per square foot, said Audrey Novoa of ABS Partners. Read More

Lease Beat

Fashion Avenue Sweater Knits Relocating in Midtown

525 7th Ave

Clothing supplier Fashion Avenue Sweater Knits signed a 10-year, 25,000-square-foot lease to move into a showroom and office lease at Olmstead Properties525 Seventh AvenueCommercial Observer has learned.

The company that specializes in importing women’s and children’s wear will expand from collectively smaller locations at 1400 Broadway and 225 West 37th Street and pay an average asking rent of $55 per square foot, said Marc Schoen of Savitt Partners, the broker who represented the company in the transaction. Read More

Lease Beat

Woodbolt International to Open First Satellite Office in New York


Woodbolt International, the developer and marketer of nutritional products including Cellucor, has signed a five-year, 3,433-square-foot lease at 37 West 20th Street, The Commercial Observer has learned. Asking rent was in the mid-$60s per square foot.

“They had an economic model in mind that this made sense for,” said Scott Galin, principal at Handler Real Estate, which represented the tenant. “The search was very efficient, I would say within a month to six weeks they identified the space through our office.” Read More

Lease Beat

Bluedata Signs Two-Year Extension at 1261 Broadway

Part of Bluedata International's facility at 1261 Broadway. (photo:

After a ten month search for more space, English-as-a-second-language school, Bluedata, signed a two year extension on the 10,900 square foot space at 1261 Broadway it has occupied for 15 years.

“It was a very intensive and extensive search,” said Perry Mesmer, executive managing director with Colliers International, who arranged the renewal on behalf of Read More

Lease Beat

450 Seventh Avenue Welcomes Human Rights in China

Human Rights in China, Inc. is set to move to 450 Seventh Avenue.

The non-governmental organization will be moving their operations from the Empire State Building in favor of a 2,639-square-foot space inside of the  Kaufman Organization-owned 450 Seventh Avenue.

“They were leased out [of the Empire State Building] by an expanding tenant,” explained Barbara Read More

Power Broker

Stephen Berliner: For Love of the Game

IMG_3729 web - credi#257660

Like most good brokers in Manhattan, Stephen Berliner loves the thrills of the job: the adrenaline of winning a client, the creativity of guiding a tenant through Manhattan’s labyrinthine options, the late nights parrying back and forth in negotiations to secure a space.

But early in his career he knew that dealmaking alone wouldn’t be enough.
Getting to the top of the city’s brokerage heap is in many ways a lonely proposition, a ceaseless, single-minded effort to fill one’s pipeline with the biggest deals and clients possible. Mr. Berliner is not lacking in ambition, but the kind of unchecked self-centeredness that would seem necessary in such a pursuit doesn’t fit his style. Read More