The Bank of America Tower is mushrooming from the ground on Sixth Avenue and is nearly complete, just 11 months from opening.
So how will the developer Douglas Durst spend the final few months before it’s finished? He’ll be busy asking for some of the highest rents in Manhattan commercial history for the tower’s remaining two floors.
His request comes on the heels of another successful lease, this time with the hedge fund HBK Investments agreeing to a 10-year-deal for 36,252 square feet on the 40th floor, said a source familiar with the deal. The lease is the fourth one signed this year at One Bryant Park.
With that floor out of the way, the 54-story, 2.1 million–square-foot skyscraper has two spaces available for rent before it’s fully occupied—floors 37 and 47 (for those scoring at home, Bank of America originally controlled the 37th floor but recently gave it back to Mr. Durst).
Asking rents for each floor will start at $185 per square foot annually, a source said, which are among the highest asking rents in any American office building ever. Average asking rent in Class A office space in midtown is $70 per square foot, according to the brokerage Cushman & Wakefield.
In this market flooded with money, no building has been able to exploit it better than One Bryant. Although trophies like the GM Building at 767 Fifth Avenue or the Seagram Building on Park Avenue charge comparably astronomical rents for available spaces, it’ll take years before all the leases in both towers are able to turn over.
The Bank of America Tower, on the other hand, was born straight into this plush era and has charged triple-digit rents from the get-go. Bank of America took 1.6 million square feet, leaving more than 500,000 square feet for rent.
This year, more than 100,000 square feet of leases were signed to the hedge fund Marathon Asset Management and the fashion designer Elie Tahari. Taking rents are all more than $115 per foot.
A spokesman for the Durst Organization declined comment.
BlackRock Buys 530 Park for $211 M. in Near-Record for a Rental Building
Laurence Fink’s BlackRock is in contract to pay $1.51 million per rental unit for 530 Park Avenue, the second-most-expensive per-unit sale in Manhattan history.
BlackRock, along with investment partner Northbrook Partners, will pay $211 million for the 19-story, 180,000-square-foot 530 Park, a source said. The deal was reported first by The Observer online on Monday.
BlackRock is the lavishly wealthy investment fund that purchased apartment buildings the Wellington on East 62nd Street and the Westminster on East 66th Street last June. For both of those purchases, BlackRock spent more than $1 million per rental unit, according to the market research firm Real Capital Analytics.
(The record holder for most expensive per-unit purchase is Lev Leviev, whose Africa Israel paid $2.6 million per unit for the Apthorp on the Upper West Side earlier this year.)
According to an analysis conducted by Real Capital Analytics, three of the top five most expensive per-unit sales in Manhattan history are now slated for condo conversions. Indeed, the 66-year-old 530 Park and its 139 rental units are likely to go that way, too. The source said no plans were imminent, but BlackRock and Northbrook will have to compensate for the sale price somehow.
BlackRock has been a major player in Manhattan residential real estate for over a year. In addition to their buys on the East Side, BlackRock was the principal investment partner that joined with Tishman Speyer to purchase Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village for $5.4 billion last year.
The Cushman & Wakefield Fantastic Four of Jon Caplan, Scott Latham, Richard Baxter and Ron Cohen marketed the building. They would not be quoted for this story.
Big Leases Are Back! Japanese Firm Takes 88,000 Feet at 150 East 42nd Street
Remember a couple months ago when leasing activity was dead?
What’s gotten into everyone’s water lately? Suddenly, deals are flying everywhere. First, the white-shoe law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore reportedly signed a 600,000-square-foot renewal at Worldwide Plaza; then the United Nations reportedly signed a 180,000-square-foot deal at 305 East 36th Street.
And now this: One of Japan’s largest trading companies, Marubeni, has signed a 12-year deal for 87,396 square feet at 150 East 42nd Street, according to two sources. The lease is one of the biggest signed this year.
The Japanese company will take the entire sixth floor and part of the seventh floor in space that was formerly leased by Pfizer.
Marubeni is a trading company, which means it does fancy things like merging its liquefied-petroleum-gas import business with companies named Mitsui, as it did last week. Surely, any company that merges liquefied-gas imports is capable of affording midtown rents.
The building that they’re moving into, the former Socony-Mobil Building, has 1.6 million square feet and is between Third and Lexington avenues. The tower was the world’s first stainless-steel skyscraper and was referred to by Landmarks Preservation Commissioner Robert Tierney as “one of New York City’s most striking skyscrapers.” It was landmarked in 2003.
Mike Burgio of Cushman & Wakefield represented Marubeni. Scott Gottlieb of CB Richard Ellis represented the building’s landlord, Hiro Real Estate. Both declined to comment.