Lease Beat

Martha Stewart Cafe Isn’t So Much a Cafe as It Is a Kiosk

601 West 26th Street.

Martha Stewart is opening Martha Stewart Cafe inside RXR Realty‘s Starrett-Lehigh Building, as Bloomberg News reported two days ago, but Commercial Observer has learned that the cafe is really a kiosk occupying a mere 150 square feet.

The kiosk, which will replace a seating area on the first floor in the building at 601 West 26th Street between 11th and 12th Avenues, is not enclosed and won’t have any seats, said a source with intimate knowledge of the long-term deal, which was signed within the last 30 days. There were no brokers involved in the deal. Read More

Postings

A Walk Along the High Line

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First proposed in 1999 with the establishment of the nonprofit organization Friends of the High Line, the preservation and reuse of the New York Central Railroad’s West Side Line has been criticized by some as sanitizing the once gritty Meatpacking District.

First opened in 2009, the High Line stretches as far north as 30th Street and will eventually terminate at the Hudson Yards site. Though the High Line can boast a significant role in popularizing the neighborhood both with tourists and New Yorkers, it is neither the first nor only attraction to boost real estate values in the area.

Below, The Commercial Observer looks at some of the real estate landmarks and popular attractions in the vicinity.

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Lease Beat

Sportswear Label Under Armour Headed to Surging Starrett-Lehigh Building

The Starrett-Lehigh Building

Under Armour, maker of form-fitting sportswear, will squeeze into a new space after inking a 19,000-square-foot deal in the Starrett-Lehigh Building at 601 West 26th Street, an address primed to profit from the sizzling Midtown South market and massive Hudson Yards development.

The 10-year lease will bring the tenant to part of the 15th floor of the 20-story building occupying the entire block between 26th and 27th Streets and 11th and 12th Avenues. It’s Under Armour’s first NYC space. Read More

The Sit-Down

David Berkey on How 200 Fifth Avenue Became a Template for Midtown South

David Berkey.

The success of 200 Fifth Avenue has served in many ways as the template for 28-40 West 23rd Street, and no doubt many other buildings in Midtown South. The building’s developer, L&L Holding Co., guessed the popularity of the neighborhood and bet a big reinvention of the property would draw top-shelf tenants, a gamble that paid off when it landed Grey Advertising and Tiffany & Co. Now the landlord of 28-40 West 23rd Street is in the middle of a similar kind of makeover. The Cohen, Roos and Carmel families, who together own the 600,000-square-foot tower, have plans to create a roof deck and have done deals with tech companies that are invading the neighborhood in droves. After the jump, The Commercial Observer talks to Andrew Roos, a Colliers International leasing executive and an owner of 28-40 West 23rd Street. Return at 10:30 today for a second installment with David Berkey, L&L’s director of leasing. Read More

Lease of the Week

“The Most Complicated Deal I Personally Have Handled.”

Starrett-Lehigh Building. (Courtesy Property Shark)

It’s not uncommon to hear Manhattan’s real estate market characterized as sophisticated or complex.

Not every day, however, does a requirement as straightforward as Dentsu McGarryBowen’s uncork such an elaborate and interconnected series of transactions as it did at the Starrett-Lehigh Building.

A longtime tenant in the 2.3-million-square-foot building and one of the property’s largest users, the advertising firm needed to expand. But there was a small problem: Despite its size, the building—an artsy, far West Side location popular among creative tenants—had virtually no available space. Read More

Lease Beat

Gamble Pays Off at Starrett-Lehigh

Starrett-Lehigh Building. (Courtesy Property Shark)

A year into owning the Starrett-Lehigh Building, RXR Realty is making what at first appeared a dicey gamble into an investment that looks closer to a sure thing.

RXR, led by its chief executive Scott Rechler, acquired the 2.3 million-square-foot far West Side office building last year for a whopping $900 million, a purchase price that equated to almost $400 per square foot. Though buildings in Midtown have traded for double that or more on a per square foot basis in recent months, the sheer magnitude of the investment turned heads as a jumbo-sized commitment in a neighborhood that many brokers and tenants still consider off the beaten path. Read More