By: Tyrone Marschand
Companies love opening offices in Manhattan’s famed Meatpacking District. As a result, rents are going up – way up. And image-conscious firms are only too happy to pay them.
RFR Realty said just under a year ago that it was renting 53,000 square feet at its property located at 875 Washington Street to the Soho Works co-working firm. It was a sign of things to come. High-end retailers, bars, restaurants, condos and even upscale hostelries have slid into the neighborhood to take advantage of its panache.
For real estate aficionados, the Meatpacking District encompasses the area from 8th Avenue to the Hudson River, between West 16th Street and Gansevoort Street. The District is a decidedly hip commercial area on the far west side. It’s home to the Whitney Museum of American Art, high-end designer clothing stores and a stretch of the High Line, an elevated park built atop former railroad tracks. At ground level, the cobblestone streets are filled with trendy restaurants and clubs that have taken over the cavernous spaces once occupied by the namesake meatpacking plants.
“The average asking rent for Class A space—which is much of the Meatpacking’s stock—went from about $49 per square foot in 2010 to $88 per square foot in 2018,” reported Crain’s New York Business. “It now stands at around $89, according to CoStar. Some office rents command more than double that, and the neighborhood’s average at the end of last year was running more than $20 per square foot ahead of Midtown South overall, according to JLL.”
Just a few weeks ago, it was reported that the trendy neighborhood was soon to welcome both a Rolex and a Audemars Piguet. “Watches from both companies regularly retail around $50k and go up from there,” according to a press release posted at brokerpulse.com. “Piguet will lease a 5,171-square-foot space in addition to a 2,543-square-foot terrace for an outdoor sundial. Rolex will occupy 3,950 square feet at the exclusive SoHo house.
The lease is a windfall for Aurora Capital Advisors and William E. Gottlieb Real Estate, which are inviting a slew of new luxury retailers to Gansvoort Street.”
In a report in January, the Commercial Observer said that Salt Bae, the Turkish butcher, chef, and restaurateur who owns Nusr-Et, a chain of steak houses, was preparing to open a second restaurant in the District. As of last year, Bae was operating restaurants in Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates; Doha in Qatar; Ankara, Bodrum, Istanbul and Marmaris in Turkey; Jeddah in Saudi Arabia; Mykonos in Greece; Miami and New York.