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January 3, 2011 

Sign up today for the New York Multifamily Summit feat. Meridian Capital CEO Ralph Herzka. Jan. 28 at the NY Bar Association. Early bird pricing available now!

Sorry, DC—New York’s now the top US spot for foreign real estate investment, according to the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate’s 19th annual survey. And the Big Apple has replaced London as the one of investors’ top two cities—a spot it had claimed since ’01, now deposed to third. (If we can convince Prince William to have his wedding at the Plaza, it'd be a clean sweep.)
72% of AFIRE members, which hold $627B of CRE ($265B of that in the US), plan to invest more capital in the US this year than they did in ‘10. The James A. Graaskamp Center for Real Estate (Wisconsin School of Business) survey found that investors are narrowly targeting NY and then DC among global cities, says AFIRE chief Jim Fetgatter. The US ranked four times as high as an investment target than second-ranked UK, and 60% of respondents called the US the best potential for capital appreciation (54% over China). Multifamily remains the primary target; hotel and retail moved up to second and third; and office and industrial dropped to fourth and fifth.

Pearls Before Swine
Schulte Roth's Jeff Lenobel
Real estate work in NYC is back and Schulte Roth is almost doubling its class of summer interns to keep up with demand, the firm’s real estate chair Jeff Lenobel recently told Legal Bisnow. Jeff's seeing activity in Class A primary markets on the coasts, similar to ’05-’06, and prices have skyrocketed in DC and NYC over the last six months. He’s working on a $1.5B refi of a portfolio of hotels in Hawaii and San Fran. As a true NY-er, he loves deals in NYC and says his recent representation of a private equity fund manager that bought the Buckingham Hotel on 57th and 6th (reportedly for $90M with millions of dollars worth of renovations to come) is indicative of the investment community’s optimism in the NYC RE market.
Schulte Roth's Jeff Lenobel's pig collection
We snapped this of the three pigs that inspired a collection of over 500 from six continents (no piggy banks or salt and pepper shakers). Jeff tells us his daughter saw these in a Florida shop and said, “they look like you, mom, and me on a beach!” (Presumably, she’s since been disinherited.) He started collecting hundreds more with a goal of collecting one from every continent. For instance, he recently ventured from Ushuaia, Argentina (the southernmost city in the world), through the Drake Passage and some of the roughest waters on the planet, down to Antarctica. The fierce waters rocked the cruise ship, breaking a man’s wrist, and causing ice-cold water to crash through Jeff’s window as he slept. Alas, of the few residents of the icy continent, none had pigs.
Schulte Roth's Jeff Lenobel
Jeff, a huge Mets fan, shows us his (highly reflective) license plate that reads NY METS and his old seat at Shea Stadium given to him by his daughters for his last birthday. Just behind the seat is his collection of the World Series winning ’69 Mets and original Topps baseball cards (though the Nolan Ryan rookie card, valued at $2,500, is missing). Jeff tells us that after Willie Mays blew off the wedding and Bar Mitzvah invitations he sent, he was finally able to pair up with the Hall of Famer on the golf course a few years back. Though Willie was recovering from glaucoma surgery, we imagine Jeff’s lower score still tasted sweet.

Edward Schotz.
Cole Schotz's Edward Schotz
Bisnow would like to express our deepest condolences for the passing of legal icon Edward Schotz, who died Dec. 29 at the age of 80. Edward was a founding member of Hackensack-based Cole Schotz, the result of the merger of his prior firm, Shavick, Schotz, Nadler & Konner with Cole, Berman & Belsky in ‘82. He concentrated on real estate planning, development, acquisitions, sales, syndications, and the leasing and financing of commercial and industrial properties. “Cole Schotz has lost its best friend, mentor, visionary, firm founder, and legal scholar. We were so blessed to be honored by his guidance, wisdom, and kindness,” said co-managing partners Michael Sirota and Samuel Weiner. He’s survived by his wife Marilyn, son Jeffrey (of SJP Properties), daughter-in-law Lauren, daughter Alison, son-in-law Peter, and five grandchildren. Donations in his memory can be made to Barnert Memorial Temple, The Valley Hospital Foundation, and the Bergen Volunteer Medical Initiative.

Happy Birthday, PWC!
PWC president Lenore Janis, PANYNJ’s Steve Plate, World Trade Center Construction’s Carla Bonacci and Debra Simonelli, and Tishman Construction’s Flora Ramos
Photos: Laura Kershaw
A very happy birthday to Professional Women in Construction, which turned 30 and celebrated with a special holiday gala last month at The Yale Club. Above, PWC president Lenore Janis, PANYNJ’s Steve Plate, World Trade Center Construction’s Carla Bonacci and Debra Simonelli, and Tishman Construction’s Flora Ramos.The night also paid tribute to Carla and Debra for their key roles in the WTC project, which Lenore notes is “now back on track and moving toward completion.” Carla supervises funds totaling over $1B as head of the WTC infrastructure and project development group, while Debra is responsible for the coordination, design, and construction of the vehicular security center and tour bus parking facility, the central artery for the site’s truck delivery and parking system.
ACB Architects’ Anthony Baker, Siemens Building Technologies’ Geralyn Spadafino and Tom Serwatka, RCGA Architects’ Martine Duphrezin, and The Fife Group’s Pat and Bill Fife
Among the dapper attendees at the sold-out event were ACB Architects’ Anthony Baker, Siemens Building Technologies’ Geralyn Spadafino and Tom Serwatka, RCGA Architects’ Martine Duphrezin, and The Fife Group’s Pat and Bill Fife. The non-profit, which advances opportunities for women and other minorities in construction and related industries, now has six chapters nationwide. The night also included some swingin’ music from Stan Rubin and his Orchestra.
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