Lucky Law Firm Picks Another Recession to Office Shop

The real estate gods look kindly on Mark Feinstein, partner at defense litigation firm Aaronson, Rappaport, Feinstein and Deutsch.

It was back in the early 1990s, in the days when the Manhattan office market had too much product and too few tenants (sound familiar?), that his firm signed a lease for 36,000 square feet at RFR Realty’s 757 Third Avenue. The firm now pays about $35 a square foot for one-and-a-quarter floors of contiguous space in a building that Mr. Feinstein calls “fine.”

Now, in the worst recession and best tenant market since the aforementioned one, Mr. Feinstein’s firm is yet again scouring Manhattan for office space.

“I’m sorry the economy has done what it has, but the market has kind of come back to us,” Mr. Feinstein said. “We got our lease coming up in about 21 months, and I think our timing is working well for us.” No kidding.

His firm has hired Newmark Knight Frank broker Mark Weiss to scour the Third Avenue corridor for about 40,000 square feet of space. The attorneys’ real estate desires are fairly ascetic. “We’re not fancy insofar as our office space,” Mr. Feinstein said. “I often refer to us as being a plain vanilla installation.”

Presumably in keeping with their litigation style, Mr. Feinstein et al. are simply “looking for the best financial deal for ourselves.” That best financial deal, he said, will likely be a per-foot rent with “a $3 in front of it.”

drubinstein@observer.com

Lucky Law Firm Picks Another Recession to Office Shop