Midtown's Smokin' Hot Office Tower Defies Pessimists

believers in Commercial viability of Midtown Park Avenue should take even more comfort in the energy at 320 Park Ave. betw...

believers in Commercial viability of Midtown Park Avenue should take even more comfort in the energy at 320 Park Ave. between East 50and and 51st streets.

In December, longtime owner Mutual of America Financial Group — which covered the 766,000 square foot tower from top to bottom in 1996 — tapped Munich Re as a 25% joint venture partner.

The Mutual group already occupied 252,000 square feet in the building. Now that the tower is owned by the joint venture, Mutual has for the first time become a real tenant paying rent under a long-term lease. Terms were not available, but asking rents at 320 Park ranged from $95 to $150 per square foot.

Meanwhile, investment management firm Pzena, a longtime tenant, doubled its space to nearly 80,000 square feet, leaving just 4% of office space available.

Both transactions coincided with the completion of a capital improvement program estimated at between $35 and $40 million. Upgrades include a new lobby with a high-end barista booth and a fitness center. All 16and floor, previously used for offices, has been converted to a 20,000 square foot tenant amenity floor complete with conference center and catering facilities.

Long view of the entire exterior of the 320 Park Avenue tower
Munich Re has taken a significant stake in the officers’ building in Midtown.

The highlight of the floor is a huge terrace accessible to all tenants. Like many others in Midtown, it was not previously used for tenants before the pandemic brought demand for outdoor space.

“It’s really spectacular,” said Frank Doyle of JLL, who handled both sides of the Mutual lease with his company’s David Kleiner. They also took over ownership of the Pzena lease; Ken Rudderman and Brad Wolk of Savills US replaced Pzena.

Doyle said, “Park Avenue is resonating again” after a trend a few years ago that saw a number of large tenants migrate to Sixth Avenue, Times Square and points farther west.

Mutual of America’s 320 Park Ave. did not suffer. He even attracted a major new tenant, Raymond Jamesduring the depressed summer of 2020, as The Post first reported.

From now on, the whole avenue has regained its appeal.

“With the rezoning of East Midtown, the development of One Vanderbilt and 425 Park Avenue” and huge capital investments in older towers, “people want to go back east and be near Grand Central Terminal. “, explains Doyle.

Doyle, Kleiner, David Giancola and Andrew Scandalios of JLL worked with Mutual of America to organize the JV with Munich RE.

Beefbar, a global premium restaurant brand with locations including London, Paris, Hong Kong, Rome and the Middle East, has signed a 6,420 square foot lease at 105 Hudson St. It will be the first American restaurant in Beefbar and the first new tenant at the location since Nobu has moved five years ago.

A huge bar at the Beefbar
Beefbar offers plenty of ways to wash down its savory delights.
Facebook/Beef bar

Brokers Lee & Associates represented owner Fine Arts Housing Inc. A Ripco team replaced TriBeCa Hospitality on behalf of the Beefbar restaurant.

Asking rent was $150 per square foot, Lee general manager Peter Braus said — about $50 less than pre-pandemic asking.

The prime corner space across Franklin Street from prosperous Tamarind Tribeca languishes in the market after Nobu decamped to 195 Broadway in FiDi. Previous brokers have failed to sign several snipers from the retail and hospitality worlds.

Sliced ​​meat on a wooden board
Beefbar has many locations overseas, but the 105 Hudson St. restaurant marks its US debut.
Facebook/Beef bar

When Lee & Associates was hired a year ago, Braus met with the chairman of the co-op’s board of directors for the mostly apartment building. “We decided the space needed work,” recalls Braus.

“There was still the old Nobu light fixture and drywall in there” which put off prospects. “We decided to white box the space and we started getting offers within months.”

He said the old Nobu “had great bones, but it had a drop ceiling that hid a beautiful old brick vaulted ceiling” which is now revealed.

Beefbar was first launched in Monte-Carlo by Riccardo Giraudi. It’s unsurprisingly meat-centric, but also features street food from around the world and “iconic” dishes from all over. The Hong Kong location has a Michelin star.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Midtown's Smokin' Hot Office Tower Defies Pessimists
Midtown's Smokin' Hot Office Tower Defies Pessimists
Newsrust - US Top News
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