Souped-Up Starbucks Coming to Related’s Hudson Yards

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Starbucks is opening a new, souped-up outpost in Related CompaniesHudson Yards in early December, Commercial Observer has learned. The 2,250-square-foot store “will be specially designed to complement the details of 35 Hudson Yards,” a spokesperson for Related said.

As such, the fixtures and build-out will be “a bit nicer to fit Related’s image,” a source said.

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Higher-quality signage than Starbucks usual outposts went up last week for the new ground-floor store at the 92-story 35 Hudson Yards, home to 143 luxury residential condominium units, a 60,000-square-foot Equinox, plus a SoulCycle, Equinox Hotel New York and spa, Tavern by WS bistro and WS New York food and wine club. 

The Related rep confirmed the deal but declined to provide its terms. A source said the deal is for 10 years and the asking rent pre-COVID-19, when negotiations first started, was around $400 per square foot. David Firestein, a partner in SCG Retail and Starbucks’ broker in New York City, declined to comment. 

“Starbucks’ internationally recognizable brand makes it the perfect addition to our diverse blend of coffee purveyors meeting the preferences of our residents, employees and visitors — and helping keep the neighborhood well caffeinated,” Brian Nitzberg, a senior director at Related who worked on the deal for the landlord, said in a statement.

Starbucks will join a number of coffee purveyors like Bluestone Lane, Blue Bottle Coffee and Jack’s Stir Brew Coffee in Hudson Yards. The existing coffee tenants are inside the retail space whereas the new Starbucks outpost faces the plaza, which is home to The Vessel, the spiral staircase sculpture at Hudson Yards.

There have been a number of Starbucks stores opening recently, which comes as fast-casual chains have been taking a hit in New York City during COVID-19. 

As CO previously reported, 1,000 chain stores closed throughout the city in 2020, making for a 13 percent year-over-year decline in stores, per the annual “State of the Chains” report from Center for an Urban Future looking at national retailers in Gotham. Starbucks itself went from 351 open stores to 302 at the end of 2020, according to the report.

Still, in New York City, traditional Starbucks stores (albeit a bit larger at 2,500 to 3,000 square feet versus the historical 1,600 to 1,800 square feet), as well as Starbucks pickup outposts (at about 1,000 square feet), have opened since the early days of the pandemic when restrictions prevented people from gathering in public places.

A new 2,000-square-foot Starbucks with a pickup window will bow along the main plaza walkway at 1 Manhattan West next month. This will be one of the only traditional Starbucks outposts that also has a pickup window in Gotham. Starbucks already has a location in the project, in an office tower at 5 Manhattan West, at 450 West 33rd Street.

Over the last year, full-sized Starbucks have opened at 240 Central Park South between Seventh and Eighth avenues and inside Moynihan Train Hall, at 383 West 31st Street between Eighth and Ninth avenues. A number of pickup locations have also opened including at 485 Fifth Avenue and East 42nd Street; 1358 Broadway between West 36th and 37th streets; 159 Columbus Avenue at West 67th Street and 111 University Place at East 13th Street. 

On a national level, Starbucks claimed in the 14-week fiscal fourth quarter ending Oct. 3, 2021, that same-store sales increased by 22 percent in the fourth quarter of 2020, an 11 percent uptick on a two-year basis.