FAO Schwarz and Toys “R” Us Looking to Open Combo Store at Brill Building
Lauren Elkies Schram Aug. 24, 2015, 3 p.m.
The future owners of the Brill Building are in negotiations with FAO Schwarz and sister company Toys “R” Us for a co-branded store, Commercial Observer has learned.
There is about 50,000 square feet of retail space available in the Brill Building at 1619 Broadway at West 49th Street. A source said the ground-floor asking rent is $700 or $800 per square foot, on the second and third floors it’s $150 per foot and in the basement it’s $100 a foot.
A deal for FAO at Paramount Group’s 1633 Broadway between West 50th and West 51st Streets went bust a week before the deal was signed, as CO reported on Aug. 7. The reason, CO has since learned, was because FAO was planning to open a FAO and Toys combination store, and Paramount “didn’t want a Toys in front of a Class A office building,” the source said.
The Brill Building will soon be under new ownership. As CO reported early this month, Brill Holdings, a partnership of real estate investment firm B+B Capital, Israel-based fashion chain Fox-Wizel and landlords Conway Capital and Schottenstein Realty, is in contract to buy the landmarked 11-story office and retail tower in Times Square for $295 million. The seller is a partnership between Allied Partners and Brickman. The purchase of the 175,000-square-foot building is expected to close in December.
Brill Holdings and Paramount declined to comment through spokespeople. The listing agents for 1633 Broadway are Cushman & Wakefield‘s C. Bradley Mendelson, Alan Schmerzler, Steve Soutendijk and Chris Schwart. Mr. Mendelson wasn’t reachable for comment and Mr. Schmerzler declined to comment. A Toys spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.