Thor Equities loses Hell’s Kitchen retail condo valued at $45.3M to lender Paramount Group
A Paramount Group debt fund through the entity Paramount Group Fund VIII 700 Eighth Mortgage LP took control from Thor Equities and its entity Milford Retail LLC, the retail condo at 700 8th Avenue in Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan, with a transfer value of $45.3 million. The recording papers did not identify this transaction as a deed-in-lieu, but the transfer followed the pattern of a borrower turning over the property to the lender.
The transfer price was far below the reported senior and mezzanine debt totaling $80 million which Paramount Group provided to Thor Equities in 2015. There is no record of a state foreclosure action related to this loan.
This transfer follows a pattern of large owners handing back properties to lenders with no legal wrangling. Thor recently turned over 496 Broadway to its lender.
The transfer closed on March 31, 2022 and was recorded on April 13, 2022. The property has 26,883 square feet of built space according to PincusCo analysis of city data. The sale price per built square foot is $1,685 per the PincusCo analysis. (The price per square foot analysis is the transaction price divided by square feet as reported in public records and assumes no air rights have been sold.)
Thor bought the property on March 27, 2014, for $64 million. The signatory for the former Thor Equities entity was Richard T. Reczka. The signatory for Paramount Group was Richard T. Reczka. Paramount Group’s debt fund in November 2015 provided $80 million debt composed of $50 million in senior debt and $30 million in mezzanine debt for Thor Equities for this retail condo at the base of the Milford Hotel.
Prior sales and revenue
Prior to this transaction, PincusCo has no record that the buyer Paramount Group had purchased any other properties and has no record it sold any properties over the past 24 months.
The seller Thor Equities purchased one property in one transaction for a total of $78 million and sold nine properties in seven transactions for a total of $242 million over the same time period.
The 700 8th Avenue parcel has a total lot size of 26,883 square feet. The city-designated market value for the property in 2022 is $23.8 million.
Violations and lawsuits
The property was not involved in any lawsuits or bankruptcies in the past years. In addition, according to city public data, the property has not received any significant violations in the last year.
There are no active new building construction projects or major alteration projects with initial costs more than $5 million on this tax lot.
In Hell’s Kitchen, the bulk, or 39 percent of the 45 million square feet of commercial built space are residential elevator buildings, with specialty buildings next occupying 17 percent of the space. In sales, Hell’s Kitchen has 3.5 times the average sales volume among other neighborhoods with $972.1 million in sales volume in the last two years and is the 13th highest in Manhattan. For development, Hell’s Kitchen has 1.3 times the average amount of major developments relative to other neighborhoods and is the 18th highest in Manhattan. It had 1.2 million square feet of commercial and multi-family construction under development in the last two years, which represents 3 percent of the neighborhood’s built space. There was one pre-foreclosure suit filed among other retail buildings in the past 12 months.
On this tax block, PincusCo has identified the owners of three of the nine commercial properties representing 2,208,970 square feet of the 2,400,002 square feet. The two identified owners are SL Green Realty and Rockpoint Group. There are no active new building construction projects on this tax block.
The majority, or 90 percent of the 1.9 million square feet of built space are office buildings, with specialty buildings next occupying 10 percent of the space.
The PincusCo database currently indicates that Paramount Group owned at least four commercial properties with 5,996,813 square feet and a city-determined market value of $2.5 billion. (Market value is typically about 50% of actual value.) The portfolio has $2 billion in debt, borrowed from Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. Within the portfolio, all identified are office properties. They are all located in Manhattan.
Within a 400-foot radius of 700 8th Avenue, PincusCo identified 11 commercial real estate items of interests occurred over the past 24 months.
Of those 11 items, one was in new building development. It was a new building permit application filed on June 18, 2020 for a 194,552-square-foot B building at 740 Eighth Avenue.
Of those 11 items, one was for major renovation including a certificate of occupancy change.
Of those 11 items, five were sales above $5 million totaling $1.7 billion. The most recent of the five was Trans World Equities which bought the 5,265-square-foot, two-unit mixed-use building (K2) on 725 8th Avenue for $10.3 million from Thor Equities on November 18, 2021.
Of those 11 items, four were loans above $5 million totaling $46.5 million. The most recent of the four was McSam Hotel Group which borrowed $24.6 million from Sterling National Bank secured by the 35,420-square-foot, one-unit hotel (H2) on 324 West 44th Street on March 2, 2022.
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