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Deals & Dealmakers

Selling points: Foreign investor pays $92M for LI mall, Diamond Dealers Club buys new HQ on West 47th


Foreign investor pays $92M for LI mall property

Holliday Fenoglio Fowler has closed the $92 million sale of The Mall at the Source, a 723,326 s/f enclosed mall, and a loan secured by the adjoining Fortunoff Building, a vacant anchor store formerly occupied by Fortunoff, located in Westbury on Long Island.

HFF marketed the property on behalf of the co-sellers, LNR Partners, LLC as Manager for CMAT 99-C1 Old Country Road, LLC a subsidiary of Starwood Property Trust, Inc., and a REMIC trust for which C-III Asset Management LLC is the special servicer.

A private foreign buyer purchased The Mall at the Source free and clear of existing debt and effectuated a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure transaction simultaneous with closing of the Fortunoff loan to acquire title to the Fortunoff Building.

The 512,528 s/f  Mall at the Source and the 210,798 s/f Fortunoff Building includes a four-story parking garage with 2,813 spaces in addition to the 1,025 surface parking spaces. Situated on a total of 38 acres at 1504 Old Country Road, the transit-oriented property is positioned within the Nassau Hub, Long Island’s premier commercial submarket.

The HFF investment sales team that represented the co-sellers was led by senior managing director Jose Cruz, managing directors Kevin O’Hearn and Chris Phaneuf, directors Michael Oliver and Stephen Simonelli and supported by senior managing director Andrew Scandalios.

“We were very pleased as to the response from REITs, developers, and large institutional retail owners, local developers.  In the end, a foreign capital source was most aggressive on pricing and terms,” stated Cruz.

Extell Development Company

Diamond Dealers Club buys IGT condo

Extell Development Company and the Diamond Dealers Club (DDC), the largest and oldest diamond trade organization in the United States, have closed on DDC’s purchase of a new headquarters on the 11th floor at the International Gem Tower (IGT) on West 47th Street.

As the anchor of New York’s Diamond District, DDC members will have the opportunity to conduct their business out of an open trading space with state-of-the-art technical facilities, a cafeteria and break area and views from floor-to-ceiling windows.

“We are excited to welcome the Diamond Dealers Club to the building,” said Gary Barnett, the founder of Extell. “Having DDC at the International Gem Tower completes our vision for a modern industry center in New York.”

“The International Gem Tower is critical to the future success and stability of the diamond industry on 47th Street in New York. I believe that this new facility and trading floor will be an incredible benefit to our members,” said DDC President, Reuven Kaufman.

“Our members will enjoy the modernity, prestige and value that IGT has to offer. We are confident that the Club’s presence will enhance the experience for IGT owners, visitors and tradesmen. Now is an excellent opportunity for DDC members to secure office space still available from Extell Development and be in the same location as the DDC and other major companies in the industry.”

Designed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, the tower was developed specifically for the global diamond, gem and jewelry industry.

In addition to a cutting-edge security system, which includes iris recognition scanners at the lobby turnstiles, owners will also benefit from on-site underground parking and a private health and fitness center.

Tenants include Gemological Institute of America (GIA); DeBeers; Isaac Davidowitz; and Manfra Tordella & Brookes

Normandy Partners

Creative office plan for LIC property

Normandy Real Estate Partners has acquired a $54 million stake in 43-10 23rd Street in Long Island City.

Normandy is partnering with the current owner, Kassabian Realty, on the planned redevelopment, which will transform the industrial building into a Class A loft-style, creative office building.

Normandy and Kassabian will start a capital improvement program that will include a full gut rehabilitation, new systems, renovation of the lobby, and add multiple outdoor spaces.

“Along with Kassabian Realty, we’re looking forward to repositioning this well-located asset into one of Long Island City’s leading office spaces by redeveloping it into a Class A loft-style, creative building,” said Travis Feehan, Principal, Normandy Real Estate Partners.

“Once completed, 43-10 23rd Street will be the premier office building and a highly desired destination for tenants in Long Island City.”

Upon renovation, 43-10 23rd Street will offer approximately 195,000 s/f of office and retail space.

Managing Director Dustin Stolly and Senior Vice President Aaron Niedermayer of the JLL Capital Markets team brokered the debt financing on behalf of Normandy.

Paul Amrich and Neil King of CBRE will be the exclusive leasing agents for the property.

Bluestar Properties

East Village trio fetches $18M

Bluestar Properties has purchased three East Village buildings for $18 million.

Owned by the same family for over 60 years, the three pre-war walkups contain 68 residential units and are located at 331-333 East 5th Street and 429 East 6th Street.

“With a majority of preferential rents, new ownership intends to improve the property to capture the growth that the East Village has experienced in recent years,” according to Jeff Pikus, principal at Bluestar.

The buyer was represented by David Meyrowitz of Simon Meyrowitz & Meyrowitz PC, while the sell was represented by Robert Moore, of Peluso & Touger, LLP.

Besen & Associates

Bronx buildings snapped up

Besen & Associates announced the sales of both 1427 & 1475 Taylor Avenue in Parkchester.

Amit Doshi represented both parties in the transaction.

Parkchester is the Stuyvesant Town Peter Cooper Village of the Bronx. It was originally built to house the WWII veterans and their families. Part of the complex was later converted into condominiums that represent 50 groups of buildings. Today, residents still praise the 130 acres complex because of the tight community that was created from the beginning.

“Back in 2003, today’s purchaser flipped those buildings as part of a six-building package to the seller. Now in 2017, the same seller sold two of these buildings to the purchaser. A deal so good it couldn’t get out of their hands, at least not yet,” said Doshi.

Built in 1930, the properties are two five-story apartment buildings, with 61 units, five stores and 58,125 s/f. Both properties were acquired for $10,750,000 which equates to 11.3 GRM, $176,240 PPU and a 5.1 percent cap rate.

Cushman & Wakefield

Medical portfolio hits market

Cushman & Wakefield has been retained on an exclusive basis to arrange for the sale of a two-building medical office portfolio on Nassau County’s North Shore on Long Island.

With an asking price of $24.5 million, the two properties – together totaling 70,167 s/f in size – represent an unusual opportunity to acquire office assets in an upscale community witnessing growing demand for medical services.

Situated approximately a half-mile apart, the two sites are 310 East Shore Road in Great Neck and 333 Shore Road in Manhasset.

“This medical portfolio represents a rare and lucrative opportunity to invest in office space within one of America’s most-affluent communities,” said Stephen Preuss, a senior managing director with Cushman & Wakefield. “In addition to the area’s high demand for healthcare services, the community is also experiencing an infusion of new luxury residential development.”

Preuss is leading a Cushman & Wakefield team that includes Benjamin Efraimov, Denise Prevete, Kevin Louie, Andreas Efthymiou and Kevin Schmitz.

With frontage along Manhasset Bay, 310 East Shore Road is a 19-unit, three-story property measuring 52,517 s/fin size. The second site, 333 Shore Road, is a two-story property with nine units and is 17,650 s/f.

Combined tenancy at the two properties is 88 percent and consists almost entirely of long-term tenants.

Cushman & Wakefield

Bayside waterfront site for sale

Cushman & Wakefield has won exclusive designation to market the last remaining developable parcel of land along the waterfront of Bayside, Queens.

Located on Little Neck Bay, 23-50 Water’s Edge Drive is an empty lot measuring 44,255 s/f, equal to about one acre in size.

The purchaser will gain the right to develop 72,140 buildable square feet for community facility use. Among qualifying usage categories are medical facilities, schools, senior care facilities, houses of worship, day care centers and other potential uses.

The marketing team has set an asking price of $12 million.

“This property is literally unique,” said Stephen Preuss, the senior managing director with Cushman & Wakefield who is leading the sales team. “No piece of similarly developable land exists anywhere else in Bayside. Every other comparable location is either occupied or not suited for development.”

The lot now nominally known as 23-50 Water’s Edge Drive currently measures 96,698 s/f in size and is home to a 121,256 s/f multi-family rental building.

The adjacent, empty parcel for sale is being subdivided from the larger lot housing the apartment building. The new owner of the property —  which will be delivered with subdivision approval — will obtain net development rights as part of the spin-off process.

Cushman & Wakefield

Onyx JV sells retail center

The Azarian Group of Midland Park, NJ has purchased Livingston Town Center, a 65,000 s/f retail property in Livingston, NJ.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Metropolitan Area Capital Markets Group arranged the $21.25 million trade from a joint venture of Onyx Equities and Lubert Adler.

Livingston Town Center houses a tenant mix including 28 convenience stores, restaurants and service retailers, among other categories and is 96 percent occupied.

“Livingston Town Center occupies a prime location in one of Northern New Jersey’s most desirable residential communities, and is part of a successful town center concept that also includes 114 upscale residential units,” said Cushman & Wakefield’s David Bernhaut.

“Its best-in-class curb appeal and complementary tenant mix distinguish the property within its competitive set. At a time when investors continue to chase high-quality retail, this offering was very well received.”

Bernhaut headed the property marketing with Metropolitan Area Capital Markets team members Andrew Merin, Gary Gabriel, Brian Whitmer, Nick Karali and Seth Pollack.

John Alascio and Sri Vankayala of the commercial real estate services firm’s Equity Debt and Structured Finance Group arranged the purchase financing.

Livingston Town Center was built in 2006 and acquired by the Onyx/Lubert Adler joint venture in 2011.

“Onyx and Lubert Adler repositioned Livingston Town Center as a destination shopping center – with great success,” Whitmer said. “Now The Azarian Group has a fantastic opportunity to leverage the property’s infill location to increase value through property improvements and the market’s strong leasing momentum.”


RXR sells office complex

Reckson New York Property Trust has sold a 400,000 s/f four-building office complex in West Orange, New Jersey

Holliday Fenoglio Fowler announced that it closed the sale of Executive Hill Office Park, an office complex totaling over 400,000 s/f in the Essex County community.

HFF marketed the property exclusively on behalf of the seller, an entity controlled by RNY Property Trust, and procured the buyer, PAG Investments.

Reckson New York Property Trust (RNY) is an Australian-listed property trust in which RXR Realty has an interest and also is the responsible management entity for the REIT.

Executive Hill Office Park consists of 31 acres and comprises 10 Rooney Circle and 100-300 Executive Drive.  Built between 1971 and 1984, is has a cafeteria, conference room and fitness center. The property is 48 percent leased to tenants, including Lincoln Educational, GEICO and a U.S. government agency.  The Essex Green Shopping Center is adjacent to the complex.

The HFF investment sales team representing the seller was led by senior managing director Jose Cruz, managing director Kevin O’Hearn, directors Michael Oliver and Stephen Simonelli, associate director Marc Duval and supported by senior managing director Andrew Scandalios.

“This is a unique transaction that appealed to the office buyers as well as redevelopers,” according to Cruz.  “The buyers saw significant near term upside in the office space and longer term potential in a repositioning play.”

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