|The Moinian Group has found creative ways to maintain its vast ownership ($10B in assets in 20M SF across the US) and leave its buildings in better financial condition than before the recession, CEO (and possible magician) Joe Moinian told AREW members yesterday at Club 101. “We survived and we’re stronger than before,” he says. This includes the well-known recap of 3 Columbus Circle with SL Green, allowing the firm to finish up the Class-B to A conversion that it envisioned 15 years ago (including the 19-phase recladding of the brick façade to glass). Soon, Young & Rubicam employees (whose firm took 350k SF) can get their nosh on at François Payard café that will open in the building. In Chicago, where Moinian owns |Sears Willis Tower, he expects another 200k SF of growth next year from tenant United Airlines, which already takes 650k SF.
|Not only have his NYC assets survived, but his W New York-Downtown Hotel & Residences has a bout of Linsanity—Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin has taken residence in the condo portion of the building, which has seen great sales since Moinian partnered up with Louise Sunshine to get the units moving at $2,000/SF, a price “unprecedented for Downtown” and quite reasonable, considering new construction would have to charge $3,000/SF to make up for development, he says. The firm is also getting the shovels out for Phase 2 of 605 W 42nd St: 1M SF of residential in over 1,100 apartments, 40k SF of retail, and 600 parking spaces, which will start construction soon. And at its hotel site on 54th Street, it’s gunning for a 400-key hotel to open in Q1 ’14.|
|Joe (with AREW prez Jennifer Carey of JLC Environmental Consultants, AXA’s Sheila Soufian, and Jimmy Soufian) also says that Moinian is still working with MTA while it constructs 3 Hudson Blvd near the Javits Center (1.7M SF of office and a huge retail component). By the time the MTA is finished with the 7 Line extension next year, he hopes to have a major tenant. Looking forward, he says big opportunities are in tech and healthcare-related real estate, hospitality, and multifamily rentals (particularly in conversions of outdated buildings). Moinian also wants to do JV recaps with existing owners that need money. His dream project: one day building a museum (he knows exactly where, but it’s a secret) as a way to pay back the city that’s been so great to him.|