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Will 2015 be the Year of the Billion Dollar Deal?

New York

Recovery complete? Well, it's still January and already three $1B-plus deals are in the works or recently closed in Manhattan. Let's take a look at the newest members of the Ten Figure Club. 

1. Three Bryant Park


Earlier this month the Canadian firm Ivanhoé Cambridge announced that it closed on a $2.2B buy of 1095 Sixth Ave (aka Three Bryant Park). The 1.2M SF tower fetched the second-most of any office building sale in US history. It was 97% leased. Blackstone's Equity Office picked it up when it took over Sam Zell's Equity Office Properties Trust for $39B in 2007--back when the market last saw $1B-plus deals regularly. Big tenants at 1095 Sixth have included MetLife, whose logo still adorns the roof, and Verizon, which once had a majority stake in the building good for $505M. Verizon moved its corporate HQ to 140 West St after selling its stake, but has since moved most of its HQ operations back. When Blackstone owned the building, it dropped $300M into renovations, which will culminate in a new three-story Whole Foods opening later this year.

2. The Waldorf Astoria


While we’re on the subject of Blackstone making tons of money, Hilton Holdings (owned by Blackstone) is preparing to sell the Waldorf Astoria to a Chinese insurance conglomerate called Anbang. Arguably the world’s most iconic hotel, some of the rooms could be turned into condos, the Wall Street Journal reported—an idea that hasn’t always turned out so great, even in a red-hot condo market. In the deal, first reported in October, Hilton would maintain management for 100 years after the sale. The price tag works out to Anbang dropping about $1.4M per room, or about half of the total price Conrad Hilton himself plopped down for the place in 1949.

3. 230 Park Avenue


If you make a left out the lobby of the Waldorf and walk a few blocks, you’ll run into 230 Park Ave, formerly called the Helmsley Building. Just this week it came out that Scott Rechler’s RXR Realty is bearing down on a 10-figure deal to buy it from Investco. It took over ownership from Monday Properties, which still handles management, for a paltry $760M in that fateful year, 2007. The NY Post reported that the seller is hoping for around $1.5B, but doesn’t look like we’ll have a number until this one closes.