Leases  ·  Retail

Martial Arts School Renzo Gracie Academy to Open Near Union Square


Union Square is getting into fighting shape.

Martial arts school Renzo Gracie Academy inked a 12-year deal for 5,000 square feet at 31 West 14th Street, with plans to open in June, according to tenant broker Kassin Sabbagh Realty’s Jeff Geoghegan

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Asking rent was $150 per square foot for 2,500 square feet on the ground floor. The martial arts school also scored 2,500 square feet of basement space, Geoghegan said.

Renzo Gracie Academy, named after the Brazilian mixed martial arts fighter, takes over the single-story retail building from rowing gym Rowgatta, which closed during the pandemic and left the space in great shape, Geoghegan said.

“Rowgatta had built out the space so the infrastructure for any type of gym was there already, so it’s not going to be much of a renovation,” said Geoghegan, who brokered the deal with KSR’s Laura Belocas, Marybeth Ourlicht and David Stringer. “This was a great opportunity.”

Plus, Renzo Gracie Academy — which has nine other locations in the city — wanted to expand near Union Square because of the college students who live there, Belocas said. 

Landlord Elysee Investments handled the lease in-house. Eylsee and a spokesperson for Renzo Gracie Academy did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Celia Young can be reached at