Leases  ·  Retail

FAO Schwarz Is Making a NYC Comeback in Rockefeller Center


FAO Schwarz will be getting a new, albeit much smaller, lease on life in New York City, with a 19,000-plus-square-foot store in Rockefeller Center, Commercial Observer has learned.

The toy retailer, which vacated a 61,000-square-foot space at the General Motors Building in 2015 after a 30-year run, has leased the space at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, sources with intimate knowledge of the deal told CO. It will replace the NBC Experience Store, which will be shuttering imminently. (NBC’s retail business has been replaced with the new lobby store at 30 Rock.)

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FAO’s new space at the Tishman Speyer-owned Art Deco property between West 49th and West 50th Streets will span the ground floor and mezzanine level when it opens next fall. Length of the “long-term” lease and taking rents were not immediately available. (Tishman doesn’t provide asking rents at Rockefeller Center.)

To the dismay of children, the over 150-year old FAO closed its iconic store at the GM Building at 767 Fifth Avenue between East 58th and East 59th Streets in summer 2015 after nearly 30 years, citing rent issues.

A little over a year later, ThreeSixty Group, a designer, manufacturer and distributor of consumer products to major retailers in the U.S., acquired FAO from Toys “R” Us.

A spokeswoman for ThreeSixty didn’t respond to a request for comment, and nor did a spokesman for Cushman & Wakefield (CWK). Kenji Ota and Neil Seth of C&W represented FAO in the deal. A spokeswoman for Tishman, which represented itself in-house in the deal, declined to comment.