This week, Malkin Holdings cleared a major hurdle in its quest to list its portfolio, which includes the Empire State Building, as a $1 billion real estate investment trust.
Should the Malkins list in the near future, they’ll be doing so as the market approaches the heights of last decade, when share prices for various REITs skyrocketed before a downfall in early 2009, when the market bottomed out. Of the REITs examined by The Commercial Observer, all experienced significant declines between 2008 and 2009, and all but one have failed to regain their former highs.
Below, a selection of some of the country’s largest REITs, including their respective gains, losses and recoveries, as well as their current share prices as of Monday’s close.
Renovation and Repositioning
APF Properties’ has converted ground floor retail space to a bike room at 28 West 44th Street, also known as the Club Row Building, The Commercial Observer has learned.
“Looking at Mayor Bloomberg’s campaign to promote bicycle use in New York City, we thought we would be proactive and create a bicycle room in lobby,” David Rosenbloom, executive director at Cushman & Wakefield, the leasing agent. “Feedback from tenants has been positive.”
Union Bank, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, has reached an agreement with Deutsche Bank to acquire PB Capital Corporation’s institutional commercial real estate lending portfolio and platform. It will pay a 3 percent premium above the over $3.7 billion face amount of PB’s commercial mortgage portfolio, sources told The Mortgage Observer.
New Read More
The boutique law firm Sanford & Heisler is moving to the unit next door in an expansion and renewal deal, it was announced. Given that the company’s lease is set to expire at the end of May, the firm turned to SL Green and negotiated a deal that will relocate them to the 7,980 square foot unit next door and extend the lease for 10 years.
Lower Manhattan 2013
When David Falk toured Pace University’s new dormitory at 180 Broadway in January, he was struck not only by the gleaming facilities but also by what they said about the 107-year-old school.
Mr. Falk, the New York tristate region president of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, has worked with the university since 1999. The new building “is beautiful,” Mr. Falk said. “It’s the new Pace.”
The transformed school has helped alter the real estate landscape of lower Manhattan. In the past 15 months, Pace has inked deals for the entire 47,000 square feet at 140 William Street, renewed a 32,707-square-foot office lease at 156 William Street, and, with partner SL Green, announced plans for a 30-story dormitory at 33 Beekman Street.
The 220,000-square-foot 180 Broadway—also a joint project with SL Green—came to light in the darkest days of the recession. Pace wanted to bring about 600 beds back to its lower Manhattan campus from Brooklyn Heights.
TGI Friday’s will be relocating its Times Square restaurant.
The popular chain restaurant will be moving to a 10,872-square-foot space at 147-149 West 46th Street from its current outpost less than a block away on the corner of Broadway and 46th Street, officials said.
“Their previous location at 1552 Broadway was sold and they were Read More
Fashion retailer Alexander McQueen has signed a 15-year lease for retail space at 747 Madison Avenue totaling approximately 3,400 square feet, it was announced yesterday. The tenant is expected to move into the space during the third quarter, according to a statement from SL Green, part-owner of the retail co-op.
A joint venture, which also includes Jeff Sutton and Harel Insurance Company in addition to SL Green, acquired the retail interest in September 2011. A second-floor residential co-op unit was subsequently acquired for redevelopment and ceiling height expansion.
When Aaron Jungreis sought a buyer for the Bossert Hotel at 98 Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights last year, a long list of obstacles stacked up.
The off-market deal meant potential buyers had limited access to the site. Complicated zoning meant the Board of Standards and Appeals would be thrown into the mix. And competition Read More
Stat of the Week
Ahhh—the hustle and bustle of the Grand Central submarket.
It has it all: a spectacular train station with its shops, bars, restaurants and food hall (oh, and actual trains, too), a fantastic location within walking distance of everything from Times Square to Central Park (and you can always take the subway if you’re lazy) and a thriving commercial office market consisting of almost 59 million square feet of inventory (though only 27 percent of that is considered Class A).
But all there isn’t absolutely perfect—something about those wonderful buildings getting a bit long in the tooth, maybe? After all, it’s not really the Mad Men days of yore, and the building stock (average age: 72 years) doesn’t necessarily work for all those companies looking for wide-open floorplates and glass from floor to ceiling. That’s the reason a number of government and private-sector movers and shakers have decided to, well, shake things up by looking to upzone a large swath of the area.
It was a transaction literally a decade in the making. Earlier this year, a deal between Jamestown Properties and Andy Sung, proprietor of the Korean barbecue restaurant Gaonnuri, came to fruition on the top floor of 1250 Broadway.
Once an otherwise abandoned mechanical room under the ownership of SL Green
, the 39th floor space in a building near the edge of Manhattan’s Koreatown was widely coveted by not only Mr. Sung, but also other restaurateurs who saw the space as ideal for an eatery with a view. When Jamestown Properties acquired the building in a venture with Murray Hill Properties
, Mr. Sung reiterated his case for leasing the room, although as chief operating officer Michael Phillips insists, he didn’t have to work hard to convince anyone.
“We believe that creating the best sense of place and community is what drives tenant retention,” said Mr. Phillips. “There isn’t one size that fits all, and I think being able to make the most of the assets that you have is what makes for good real estate.”
After the jump, Mr. Phillips reviews the floor plans for 1250Broadway’s 39th floor with The Commercial Observer
and explained what drew Gaonnuri to the building.
More than 300 real estate professionals crowded the Metropolitan Club early Thursday morning, despite snow-covered sidewalks, for the Observer Media Group’s third annual Masters of Real Estate forum.
Sponsored by Fried Frank and Marks Paneth & Shron, the event drew boldface names like Larry Silverstein and Mortimer Zuckerman, who spoke about the devastation wrought by Sandy, not to mention financiers like Angelo Gordon & Co.’s Adam Schwartz and Rockpoint Group’s Keith Gelb, who weighed in on opportunistic investments.
Below, reporter Al Barbarino walks the room and listens in on the panels, striving to put his finger on the commercial real estate industry’s pulse, minute by minute.
After hiring Eastdil Secured earlier this year to help it sell a stake in 521 Fifth Avenue, REIT SL Green announced last week that a joint venture between Quantum Global Real Estate and LaSalle Investment Management has agreed to buy a 49.5 percent equity interest.
Plaza Global Real Estate Partners, the JV, agreed to buy the stake for $72 million in a deal that is expected to close by the end of 2012.
Robert Half International has inked a deal at 125 Park Avenue.
The world’s largest specialized staffing firm will take 38,026 square feet covering the entire fourth floor and parts of the third floor at SL Green‘s building across the street from Grand Central.
SL Green has bought two Midtown South buildings for $173 million as part of its effort to expand into the booming submarket. The two adjoining buildings were once part of a single Ladies’ Mile department store.
The buildings, 635 Sixth Avenue and 641 Sixth Avenue, were bought from Atlas Capital Group, whose other New York holdings include 845 West End Avenue and 24-02 Queens Plaza South.
With school back in session earlier this month, The Commercial Observer reviewed its library of leather bound text books and plucked at random a collection of 15 entry-level real estate trivia questions, touching on everything from ethic and law to pop culture and the brick and mortar itself.
While a high score won’t ensure success in real estate, it does promise popularity in life and bragging rights at the water cooler. The answers are upside down below, after the jump. Buena Suerte!