Thor Equities has closed on the $23 million off-market purchase of Atlantic Gardens, a mixed-use development abutting the Barclays Center.
Atlantic Gardens consists of 24 rental units and nine retail spaces at 525-541 Atlantic Avenue between Third and Fourth Avenues. The seller, Bennat Berger of BCB Properties, bought the assets for $10.93 million just two years ago.
Midtown South is starting to look a little like Downtown North.
In the latest sign of the evolution of Manhattan’s former no-man’s land between Midtown and Downtown into the hottest office submarket in the U.S., Cushman & Wakefield last week noted a migration of financial firms into Midtown South and a corresponding overflow of technology and media firms into the Financial District over the past 10 years.
“We’ve never seen such an intertwining of the Midtown South market and Downtown,” Andrew Peretz, executive vice president at C&W, said in an interview.
Thor Equities has hired Richard Farley to lead their leasing department as Vice President of Office Leasing. Mr. Farley will be joining in light of Thor Equities’ New York City portfolio expansion.
Andiamond LLC will be relocating their headquarters office in New York.
The fine diamond company has signed a deal for 5,063 square feet at Thor Equities‘ 590 Fifth Avenue.
Club Monaco is moving on up to the northeast side of Broadway and Spring Street.
The mid-price casual apparel company signed a 15-year, 5,100-square-foot lease at Thor Equities‘ 532 Broadway in Soho and will move there from its current 14,500-square-foot location at 520 Broadway.
Robert Cohen of RKF represented the tenant. Joseph Sitt‘s Thor Equities represented the landlord in-house. Asking rents were $800 per square foot.
Some commercial real estate brokers are “kicking and screaming” about the audacity of some city landlords who they claim are disregarding their “exclusives” with retailers by attempting to land tenants on their own.
The idea of “skipping the middle man,” once thought of as a tool for efficiency, is enraging some brokers, who tell The Commercial Observer that large retail owners including Joe Sitt, Jeff Sutton and Joe Moinian, are steering out of their way – but digging deep under their skin.
“Totally not kosher,” one perturbed president of a top city brokerage wrote in an email to The Commercial Observer. “It puts the retail brokers in a difficult spot and it is morally incorrect.”
Video game developer Avalanche Studios has completed a transaction to expand its office space at 536 Broadway. Avalanche picked up an additional 8,655 square feet in the recent transaction, Ira Rovitz, managing director at Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, who represented the tenant, told The Commercial Observer.
The deal is a 10 year lease, according to David Grijns, general manager of Avalanche Studios’ New York office. Mr. Rovitz declined to provide financial details of the transaction.
Avalanche took occupancy at the building in early 2012 with original square footage of 9,705, Mr. Rovitz said. Avalanche quickly outgrew its original office space, but there was never a search for a new location, since the company knew space was coming available, he noted. “It was an opportunity when we originally did the lease,” he said.
Thor Equities and ASB Real Estate Investments’ Allegiance Real Estate Fund have purchased 875 Washington Street in the Meatpacking District for $96.5 million.
The 60,000-square-foot, five-story building, between 13th and 14th Streets, features office and retail space and is located across the street from the High Line Park, a main driver in the neighborhood’s assent as one of the city’s most-travelled retail destinations.
“The Meatpacking District is the place to be in the fashion world, and as purveyors of high-end retail real estate, it is only fitting that we continue to expand our presence here,” said Joseph Sitt, CEO at Thor Equities, in a statement. “Situated among many of the world’s best nightlife, dining, and shopping outposts, 875 Washington is truly in the heart of the excitement and growth of Manhattan.”
The Power Broker
The mere mention of “the need for creativity in real estate” sparks a sudden shift in Christel Engel’s otherwise stoic demeanor, as a wide smile overtakes her face. It’s a necessity in today’s real estate world, she says, raising a finger.
“You want to see? I’ll be right back,” says the Colliers International team leader, who oversees a portfolio comprising 1.5 million square feet, springing up from her chair, dashing from the room and returning in a matter of seconds with a large black scrapbook.
Fifth Avenue’s drop from the top spot of Cushman & Wakefield’s list of the world’s most valuable shopping destination has more to do with surging rental rates in Hong Kong than it does a loss of value here in New York. That city’s Causeway Bay now holds the distinction of being the most expensive strip Read More
Shah Diamonds has inked a deal for an office at 590 Fifth Avenue.
The diamond and jewelry store will take 6,185 square feet of the ninth floor of 590 Fifth Avenue. The company has been in business since the 1970s and has expanded to employ more than 700 workers in three manufacturing facilities in the Read More
Matthew Seigel has joined Thor High Street Advisors, the retail leasing arm of landlord Joe Sitt’s real estate company Thor Equities.
Mr. Seigel will move to the firm from Cushman & Wakefield, where he had been a junior partner of Joanne Podell, one of C&W’s retail leasing aces.
The Power Broker
Joe Sitt reclined in his office wearing the sly little smile of someone who knows something more than we do.
“Another retailer that we represent asked us if we could find them a space in Tehran,” he said.
Mr. Sitt seemed fascinated, not appalled (Mr. Sitt’s family is Syrian Jewish) or the least bit bewildered by the request.
“So many of the European retailers are operating stores in Iran,” the head of Thor Equities explained to The Commercial Observer. “We’re a little bit in a bubble in the U.S. Adolfo, Desigual, Mango, Diesel, I don’t remember which ones, but two out of four already have stores there. [In] Saudi Arabia, Mango already has 50 stores there. I have another request for Equador. Zara wants more stores in Venezuela. I’ve had requests for Russia. Those are some of the examples that show you the world is changing.”
Mr. Sitt can relate to clients like these, which he caters to through a relatively new arm of his real estate empire, a brokerage business called Thor High Street.
He too ventured off the beaten path to get where he is today; by many accounts one of the city’s most prolific and successful investors with a focus on retail properties.
A joint Meatpacking District development by Taconic Investment Partners and Thor Equities is slated to receive zoning approvals from the New York City Department of Buildings, according to city records.
The proposed 55,000-square-foot development at 837 Washington Street will create 28,000 square feet of retail space and 27,000 square feet of office space at the former site of a 1930s factory building.
Cushman & Wakefield’s Equity, Debt & Structured Finance team has arranged $100 million in floating rate financing for Thor Equities’ 590 Fifth Avenue.
Thor Equities, headed by CEO Joseph Sitt, bought the 19-story, 100,000-square-foot office and retail building in 2007 from the Feil Organization for $90 million, according to data from Real Capital Analytics. Tenants there include AT&T and the NBA store.