The Starbucks Deal at 1140 Broadway
Jotham Sederstrom Nov. 30, 2011, 10:08 a.m.
Not many landlords would have reason to celebrate landing a deal with Starbucks, a nearly ubiquitous retail presence in Manhattan.
But at 1140 Broadway, a roughly 200,000 square foot building owned by Colliers International executives Andy Roos and Michael Cohen, the deal the pair recently negotiated with the coffeehouse giant felt notable.
Situated on the corner of 26th Street, the building has long straddled the edge of a strange no-man’s land just north of the Flatiron District and south of the office neighborhood surround Penn Station that is home to a dense pack of grimy shops and street vendors. The asset itself used to be home to an unwieldly if not unsavory tenant base. “The building used to be crammed with import/export tenants,” Mr. Roos said.
Though Mr. Roos was named Colliers top dealmaker globally in 2010 and handled several transactions for major tenants such as the United Nations and Marks Paneth, he still takes an active hand managing his family’s substantial real estate holdings and has been directly involved in the work at 1140 Broadway.
Mr. Roos, who along with Mr. Cohen hails from a family of successful real estate investors in the city, took charge of the property in the 1990s. His grandfather, Sydney Roos had purchased the building with the Cohen family in the early 1950s from the estate of the famed World War Two commander General George Patton.
Mr. Roos spent years restoring the property, which was built in 1915, to its former glory.
“My father and grandfather had installed a lobby during the 1960s that, let us just say was indiginous to that period,” Mr. Roos said.
Mr. Roos and Mr. Cohen stripped the old lobby away and were pleased to find that much of the building’s original finishes and stonework lay untouched underneath. “We restored the lobby to look the way it did, with tin ceilings and a beautiful historic feel,” Mr. Roos said.
Mr. Roos also cleared out the property’s old base of tenants, replacing them with creative companies. Today the building’s roster of firms includes S2BN Holdings, one of the producers of the broadway production of Spiderman, as well as an office for the restaurant owner and television personality Bobby Flay.
But while the building’s office tenants have been switched over, Mr. Roos still hadn’t been able to effect the same kind of changes to 1140 Broadways’s retail space. In recent weeks however, he closed a roughly 1,500 square foot deal to bring Starbucks to a portion of the retail space.
Though Mr. Roos readily admits that some landlords might not be as thrilled as he was to land the coffeehouse chain, for him, the deal caps the property’s transformation.
“I know there are a lot of Starbucks in the city, but there aren’t many in this neighborhood and I think it shows the kind of changes that have gone on here,” Mr. Roos said. “I’ve gotten a lot of feedback on the deal, the tenants are thrilled.”
Starbucks was represented by David Firestein, a principal at the brokerage Northwest Atlantic, in the lease.