Presented By: TF Cornerstone
How TF Cornerstone Selects the Best-in-Class Amenities for Their Office Properties
Partner Insights spoke to TF Cornerstone’s Jake Elghanayan about how they pair their world-class amenities to specific office properties.
When TF Cornerstone unveils a new office building or renovates an older one, they give substantial consideration to the amenity package, making sure the amenities offered match up specifically with the tenancy for that building. One great example of this is Reside, a medical provider that offers an on-site primary care physician who is now available to all of the company’s tenants at the Carnegie Hall Tower office building in Manhattan’s Plaza District. Partner Insights spoke with Jake Elghanayan, a principal at TF Cornerstone, about how they select amenities that will most benefit their tenants.
Commercial Observer: How does TF Cornerstone decide which amenities would be best for any particular building?
Jake Elghanayan: We think about the individualized needs of each building’s tenants and the unique physical characteristics of each building. At Carnegie Hall Tower, for example, the building has boutique floor plates. So we have smaller tenants who have discerning expectations about the quality of spaces and level of service. As a result, we had three criteria in mind: high-impact, special spaces; opportunities to save our tenants’ employees time; and ways of leveraging common space that would allow for more efficient space planning of their individual suites.
Let’s talk specifically about Carnegie Hall Tower. Walk us through how it was decided which amenities to include there.
Carnegie Hall Tower has an amazing terrace and boardroom on the 43rd floor overlooking Central Park. It was previously used by a single tenant and we originally planned to re-lease it to a single tenant, but with the increased importance of amenities, we decided that this is a really special feature with a high WOW! factor that would have the highest impact if shared. Plus, we find that people don’t tend to use their terraces day in/day out. So we concluded that the terrace would make sense as a core amenity for the building. We also wanted to offer hospitality-like service that would do justice to the physical space, which led us to partner with Industrious, who also offers a few shorter-term and serviced office suites.
Reside followed not long after. We ended up being their first location. They provide a doctor on site every day who is available to anyone who works in the building, plus acupuncture, a dietician, a therapist and more in the wellness category that are available on more of a weekly basis. They work with all forms of health insurance.
you think Reside would be a great service specifically for Carnegie Hall Tower?
The combination of time savings and more personalized medical care, both of which are becoming more important to tenants and their employees. They’ve been active in the building for about a year and a half. Tenants have responded very strongly to this, and they helped our tenants work through health-related office policies, especially during the pandemic.
Over time, do you think that offering Reside as an amenity will help your tenant companies attract high-quality talent?
Yes, definitely. That is the goal — that smaller boutique firms can offer the type of amenity you would normally expect to see at BlackRock or Google.
Talk about how TF Cornerstone is working with Industrious to give tenants a better experience.
Here’s an example. I was recently talking with a head of real estate at a company that wanted to use their conference space for a big call that had some Zoom participants. That building, which is a Class A building, didn’t have Teams set up in the conference space, so they couldn’t have this meeting in the shared conference room. The value of Industrious is their expertise in leveraging space and technology so that it’s a seamless experience and not a pain point.
What are some other unique elements of the boardroom at Carnegie Hall Tower that will make meetings easier and more productive for your tenant companies?
There’s basically everything you would expect. It’s all set up for Zoom or Teams or whichever service you use. There are cameras and big-screen TVs, and state-of-the-art teleconferencing equipment. It can be used as a 30-seat boardroom, or divided into two smaller rooms. And then you have easy access to the terrace, which offers sweeping views of Manhattan. This boardroom is available for any tenant’s use, including for private parties. Also, the boardroom furniture was designed and handmade by a Brooklyn artist named Mark Jupiter, using the building’s cornice fins as inspiration.
You’re talking about saving time for tenant companies and increasing productivity. Tell me about the golf simulator, including why you decided to include it.
It’s a state-of-the-art Foresight Sports GCHawk launch monitor, with FSX software that boasts the largest library of world-class courses available, including St. Andrews & Pebble Beach. It was brought in at the request of one of our long-term tenants, but it seemed to also fit the personality of a lot of our tenants who might want to take a break and work on their golf swing after working long hours. So we turned it into a lounge. The simulator is managed by Centurion Physical Therapy, which also offers a golf assessment & training program.
Are there any other amenities you would like people to know about?
We have a tenant portal that offers tenants one comprehensive site where they can download their rent bill, access their account details, register their guests, upload insurance certificates, request building services, review the building rules and regulations, pay a bill, and link to amenity reservation sites. Again, the goal is to really make the experience of being an office tenant with us seamless and hassle-free.
Do you think all of these amenities will wind up in more of TF Cornerstone’s office buildings?
There is an undeniable trend towards more amenities in office buildings, but too many owners now apply that thinking blindly in a “keeping up with the Joneses” mentality. At a building like Carnegie Hall Tower with boutique users, there’s a lot of value in creating shared resources, i.e. amenities, that are out of reach for each tenant individually. But larger space users are more likely to want those same spaces and services within their leased spaces and unlikely to attach value to shared amenities, in which case owners are at risk of not earning a return on their cost or being forced to seek higher rents that make their properties less competitive.