From negotiating highly sophisticated real estate portfolio transactions to drafting routine leasing or management agreements, our team is passionate about achieving our clients' business goals. We see ourselves as business counselors as well as legal advisors, working proactively to identify opportunities and remove impediments to our clients' growth.
With offices in New York City, New Jersey, Palo Alto, Washington, D.C., and Utah, the practice is national in scope. Prominent real estate investors (including investment advisors, asset managers, private equity firms, real estate investment trusts, commercial and investment banking institutions, high-net-worth individuals, and family offices), developers, national and regional retailers, Fortune 100 companies, and closely held businesses all turn to us for legal counsel on a wide range of transactions and disputes involving real estate investments located throughout the United States.
Our lawyers provide strategic guidance on all aspects of the acquisition, disposition, development, financing, leasing, and operation of real property, as well as managing disputes that may arise in the course of such transactions. Whether a matter calls for navigating complex environmental or regulatory hurdles, developing strategies for minimizing tax implications, or aligning project objectives among joint venture partners, we stand ready to draw upon our extensive experience and technical knowledge to provide practical, business-minded solutions and ensure positive outcomes.
Listed among the leading real estate groups in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, we have been lauded for our "experienced team with particular expertise in representing developers across a broad range of transactional real estate issues," and noted for "regularly tackling the leasing, financing, and management of major portfolios" (2014).
Our Real Estate Practice Group handled a transaction that was awarded "North American Real Estate Deal of the Year" by Project Finance, and another that was awarded "Most Creative Deal of the Year" by the Real Estate Board of New York.
One of the nation's largest commercial banking institutions, a publicly traded gas and service station REIT, self-storage operators, and several national fashion/retail chains in connection with their lease platforms.
A leading global, multi-platform media and entertainment company that is the go-to source for tech, digital culture and entertainment content in connection with its headquarters lease in Manhattan and its production facility in Los Angeles.
Acquisitions & Dispositions
A leading private equity firm in connection with the sale of a full-service boutique hotel in Manhattan for over $70M.
A Santa Barbara, California, winemaker in the acquisition of a 115-acre vineyard that produces award winning-Syrah.
A leading developer in the acquisition of land and development of up to 2 million square feet along the East River in Queens, New York.
The sale of more than 700 acres of landfills located at the Meadowlands for the redevelopment of up to 3 million square feet of commercial warehouse/flex space and solar farms.
A private investment firm and former owner of a New York City building in its sale of retained excess development rights for $26 million.
An individual client in the closing of an acquisition of a parcel in Sussex County, New Jersey, triple net leased to CVS.
The owners of property located in Bergen County, New Jersey, in the sale of land that is to be used for the construction of an indoor water park.
A nonprofit organization in the sale of assets of its nonprofit pre-school provider, including a 28,000 square foot school building.
A real estate investor in the acquisition of a residential apartment building in Queens, New York.
A major equity firm in connection with its investment in a chain of retail wireless stores with 200 locations.
Various affiliated entities, each operating and holding the franchise for nine Burger King restaurant locations throughout New Jersey, in connection with the sale of all of their assets. The underlying real estate on which the restaurants were located remained under the ownership of other entities affiliated with the seller. This transaction included the negotiation of an asset purchase agreement and 40-year "triple net" leases for each of the nine restaurants that were sold.
A real estate investor in the purchase of an 85 percent equity interest in two hotels near Wilmington, Delaware, including amendments to the hotel franchise agreements, new management agreements for the hotels, and negotiation of new mortgage and mezzanine loans totaling $42 million for funding operation of the hotels.
A real estate investor in connection with a $42 million acquisition, as controlling investor, of a commercial design center in San Francisco's Inner Potrero neighborhood of SoMa. The transaction included negotiation of a tenancy-in-common agreement, a 1031 exchange, $35 million in CMBS acquisition financing provided by Ladder Capital, and property management agreements with Colliers International.
A national self-storage operator in connection with acquisitions of multiple self-storage facilities located in New York City and the New York City metropolitan area.
A leading national mall developer in connection with its acquisition, financing, and expansion of the Riverside Square Mall in Bergen County, New Jersey (now known as the Shops at Riverside).
The owners of commercial property located along the High Line in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City in the disposition of the property for $47.5 million. The property had been owned by an eight-party TIC (tenant-in-common entity).
A national retailer and its affiliates in connection with the disposition of its national real estate portfolio.
A joint venture between a leading investment bank and a national developer in connection with the sale of four office buildings in New Jersey and Michigan for a combined purchase price in excess of $100 million.
An operator of health care facilities in the disposition of a portfolio of five long-term care facilities in Oklahoma.
A national media company in the sale and leaseback of production facilities in California.
A private equity firm in its bid to acquire a 44-building office portfolio in California, Delaware, Virginia, and New Jersey for $450 million.
An international pharmaceutical company in connection with disposition of U.S. headquarters property for $45 million.
The coordination of the disposition of a multifamily apartment complex in San Antonio, Texas, for $35 million and the simultaneous acquisition of replacement multifamily properties in Tallahassee, Florida, and Homewood, Alabama, for an aggregate price of $65 million via 1031 exchanges. The transactions involved 20 individual investors through an informal private placement, as well as $16 million in new financing and the assumption of a $30 million loan securitized under Freddie Mac CME (Capital Markets Execution) program.
A family-owned real estate company in the disposition of a self-storage portfolio and the reinvestment of the proceeds into more than $100 million in multifamily properties across the country.
A national developer in its bid to acquire a 17-building office portfolio in Princeton, New Jersey, for $468 million.
A global plastics manufacturer in connection with the sale of its headquarters located in New Jersey through an auction process and the leasing of its new global headquarters facility in Pennsylvania, including the negotiation of a multi-tiered tax benefit structure offered by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania pursuant to the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program.
A leading public university in connection with public/private financing and land swap arrangements for a major campus expansion project.
An international consumer electronics company in connection with its acquisition of a new U.S. headquarters facility.
A national developer in its bid to acquire an office building portfolio and raw land in Princeton, New Jersey, for a combined purchase price in excess of $190 million.
A privately held, family-owned real estate company in the systematic disposition of its New Jersey office and industrial properties, and subsequent replacement of those investments with Class-A multifamily properties in five states through a combination of IRC Section 1031 like-kind exchanges and Freddie Mac financing.
An international public company in connection with its $280 million term loan for the acquisition of a chemical plant located in the southeastern United States.
Origination counsel to numerous banks, private equity firms, life insurance companies, and other financial institutions in connection with the origination of hundreds of commercial mortgage and mezzanine loans secured by office, retail, multifamily, and industrial properties nationwide.
A national developer in connection with its $220 million construction financing of its joint venture development with a major investment bank and The New York Times Company of a 52-story office tower in Manhattan that serves as the new international headquarters of The New York Times.
A financial institution, which is a leading purchaser of distressed mortgage loans, in the acquisition of a $25.5 million non-performing mortgage loan secured by an office park located in Louisville, Kentucky.
A financial institution, which is a leading purchaser of distressed mortgage loans, in the acquisition of a $37 million non-performing mortgage loan secured by an office park located in Phoenix, Arizona.
A European commercial bank in connection with a $129 million loan which financed the borrower's acquisition of a pool of 36 commercial mortgage loans secured by properties in 17 states.
A leading regional medical center in the financing and construction of a new $220 million, 322-bed hospital, which included addressing all construction and tax-exempt financing issues and involved a HUD-insured mortgage.
An Asian-based public company in connection with the real estate procurement and project financing of a 432,000-ton capacity polyethylene terephthalate plant in Alabama.
A life insurance company in connection with the sale and securitization of more than $845 million of its commercial mortgage loan portfolio.
A private equity fund lender in connection with the workout and restructuring of a construction loan secured by a New York City hotel.
Lehman Brothers in connection with the purchase of $1.7 billion of residential mortgage loans, including the negotiation of servicing agreements, warehousing lines of credit, and repurchase transactions.
One of the largest privately held real estate companies in the United States in connection with the purchase of distressed senior mortgage debt secured by several hotel assets.
An international manufacturing company in connection with $640 million of fixed asset financing for its U.S. subsidiaries's manufacturing sites.
A global manufacturer of metal components for automotive industry in refinance of multistate secured loan facility.
A private investment firm, a former owner of a New York City building, in its sale of retained excess development rights for $26 million.
A leading developer in the acquisition of land and development of up to 2 million square feet along the East River in Queens, New York.
A national developer in connection with its joint-venture development and construction financing of three warehouse/retail buildings for Crate and Barrel totaling 949,201 square feet.
A national developer in connection with its acquisition and redevelopment of the 147-acre world headquarters facility of Honeywell. The redevelopment project is expected to yield approximately 700,000 square feet of office space and approximately 200 townhomes.
A national developer in connection with its acquisition and redevelopment of more than 25 contiguous parcels of land along the Hudson River waterfront in an assemblage transaction valued at more than $115 million.
A national developer in connection with its ground lease, development, and construction financing of a mixed-use office and retail complex on 125th Street in Manhattan (Harlem Center).
The owner/developer of 432 Park Avenue, the tallest residential building in the world, in connection with various levels of condominium management agreements and a management agreement for an exclusive club/restaurant dedicated to residents.
A leading hedge fund in its lease negotiation for a new Miami Beach headquarters in a landmark building.
A collaborative work space leader in the lease of a new 102,000-square-foot Tribeca location
A major real estate investment group and private equity firm in connection with a lease in its building located in Lower Manhattan to a company in the television and movie special effects business.
A fragrance manufacturer in connection with the build-out and lease of its specialized single-tenant-occupancy production facility, with base rentals aggregating $7.5 million.
A leading marketing technology company in the addition of a two-floor conference center and entertainment space to their existing Park Avenue South headquarters.
Portfolio counsel to several national retail chains in connection with the leasing, acquisition, and disposition of their retail and other real estate portfolios.
A national developer in connection with its net lease to the Pharmacia Corporation (now Pfizer) of two Class-A office buildings totaling 233,000 square feet of space.
A major New York City developer in connection with its lease of up to 200,000 square feet of office space in one of Manhattan's premier office buildings.
A major New York City developer in connection with its lease of a multi-tenanted food court in its flagship retail and entertainment complex in Times Square in Manhattan.
A major geomarketing cloud technology company in connection with the lease of its corporate headquarters in New York City's Flatiron District (consisting of approximately 66,000 square feet).
A prominent real estate fund manager in connection with all facets of its New York City property-related asset management matters, including retail leases; parking leases; and office leasing, sales, and property management agreements.
A private equity fund in connection with its approximately 60,000-square-foot headquarters lease at 280 Park Avenue in New York City, with rentals aggregating approximately $70 million.
A rapidly growing software company in connection with its lease of its headquarters in a historic Center City, Philadelphia, office tower.
A major private and public equity firm (which manages over $12 billion in assets) in connection with the leasing of office space in San Francisco, California.
One of the nation's largest commercial banking institutions in connection with its branch expansion, including the acquisition, leasing, and development of new branch locations across the northeastern U.S.
A developer in negotiating a ground lease for the construction and operation of a heliport fixed based of operations.
Several international energy companies in connection with the disposition of more than 600 retail service station properties in six states.
A major financial institution in connection with synthetic lease transactions involving more than 700 retail service-station properties in seven states.
A publicly traded REIT in connection with:
The portfolio leasing of 130 gasoline service station properties located in Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and New Jersey, with an aggregate annual rent roll of approximately $6.3 million and a total base rental value of approximately $106 million (excluding options).
The portfolio leasing of 84 gasoline service station properties located in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, with an aggregate annual rent roll of more than $6.2 million and a total base rental value in excess of $100 million (excluding options).
The portfolio leasing of 96 gasoline service station properties located in New York, with an aggregate annual rent roll of more than $6.7 million and a total base rental value in excess of $125 million (excluding options).
The portfolio leasing of 28 gasoline service station properties located in New York and New Jersey, with an aggregate annual rent roll of more than $3.1 million and a total base rental value in excess of $52.5 million (excluding options).
Public/Private Partnerships (P3)
A multinational social infrastructure privatization firm that is the nation’s leader in public/private community development in connection with the first-, second-, and third-ever privatization of hotels on United States military installations. This three-phase representation spanned over eight years and included the acquisition, long-term ground lease, development, construction, renovation, demolition, and financing of a portfolio of approximately 14,000 hotel rooms on 41 United States military installations across the United States. The military installations included Aberdeen Proving Ground, Fort Belvoir, Fort Benning, Fort Bliss, Fort Bragg, BT Collins Army Reserve Center, Fort Buchanan, Fort Campbell, Carlisle Barracks, Fort Carson, Fort Drum, Dugway Proving Ground, Fort Gordon, Fort Hamilton, Fort Hood, Fort Huachuca, Hunter Army Airfield, Fort Hunter Liggett, Fort Jackson, Fort Knox, Fort Leavenworth, Fort Lee, Fort Leonard Wood, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Fort McCoy, Fort Meade, Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Parks Reserve Forces Training Area (Camp Parks), Fort Polk, Presidio of Monterey, Redstone Arsenal, Fort Riley, Fort Rucker, Joint Base San Antonio, Fort Shafter/Tripler Army Medical Center, Fort Sill, Fort Stewart, Fort Wainwright, U.S. Army Garrison West Point, White Sands Missile Range, and Yuma Proving Ground. The initial development budget for this approximately 14,000-hotel-room project exceeded $1 billion. The project featured a complex financing arrangement, which included a $715 million senior loan from Bank of America, a $25 million New York City junior loan from Behringer Harvard, and a $21.5 million subordinate loan from Lend Lease (US) Capital Inc. The first phase of this project was awarded the 2009 “North American Real Estate Deal of the Year” by Project Finance magazine. Begun in 2009, the Privatization of Army Lodging (PAL) continues to be an example of social infrastructure privatization that works.
A multinational social infrastructure privatization firm in connection with its privatized military family housing program, including the leasing, acquisition, development, and financing of housing units on the Fort Hood military base in Texas, one of the world’s largest military installations. The project included the privatization and development of over 6,400 housing units for military families. The initial development phase of this project included the demolition, rehabilitation, and new construction of thousands of housing units with a development budget in excess of $315 million. The project included the negotiation of a joint venture with the United States Army, a 50-year ground lease of federal land from the United States of America, and the issuance of three tranches of long-term revenue bonds via separate 144A bond offerings totaling $305M. The bonds were credit-enhanced by MBIA.
A multinational social infrastructure privatization firm in connection with its privatized military family housing program, including the leasing, acquisition, development, and financing of housing units on Fort Knox military base in Kentucky. The project included more than 2,500 housing units for military families with an initial development budget of over $215 million. The project included the negotiation of a joint venture with the United States Army, a 50-year ground lease of federal land from the United States of America, and over $220 million in debt and equity investments, including $179 million in initial construction and permanent financing from Bank of America that was credit-enhanced by AMBAC.
A multinational social infrastructure privatization firm in connection with its privatized military family and unaccompanied soldier housing program, including the leasing, acquisition, development, and financing of housing units on Fort Drum military base in upstate New York. This project included financial incentives from the Jefferson County, New York, Industrial Development Agency. The project included the demolition, renovation, and construction of more than 3,835 housing units for military families and the construction of a 192-unit apartment complex for unaccompanied soldiers with a combined initial development budget in excess of $390 million. The project included the negotiation of a joint venture with the United States Army, a 50-year ground lease of federal land from the United States of America, and over $420 million in construction and permanent financing from GMAC/Capmark (now Guggenheim Partners) in four separate tranches ($232 million, $26.2 million, $96.8 million, and $68 million) that was credit-enhanced by MBIA.
A multinational social infrastructure privatization firm in connection with its privatized military family housing program, including the leasing, acquisition, development, and financing of housing quarters, including duplexes, multiplexes, and single-family dwellings, on more than 2,560 acres of the Fort Campbell military base, which straddles the Kentucky-Tennessee border. The initial development phase of this project included the demolition of 866 housing units, the rehabilitation of 2,458 units, and the new construction of 891 units and a development budget in excess of $175 million. The project included the negotiation of a joint venture with the United States Army, a 50-year ground lease of federal land from the United States of America, and $154 million in initial construction and permanent financing from GMAC/Capmark (now Guggenheim Partners) that was credit-enhanced by AMBAC. In a separate transaction, new land was later added to the Fort Campbell housing privatization project, additional development was planned to increase the unit count to almost 3,800 units, and additional construction and permanent financing was raised from Capmark (again credit-enhanced by AMBAC) to raise the project's total debt to approximately $225 million.
A regional supermarket chain in connection with various aspects of portfolio management, including obtaining land use approvals for store rebrandings.
The parent company of several leading national retail chains in connection with obtaining local land use approvals for the rehabilitation and redevelopment of 182,000 square feet of office buildings and improvements for its new headquarters location in Mahwah, New Jersey.
A national mall developer in connection with the land use permitting and approvals for its 96,000-square-foot lifestyle center expansion at a major shopping mall.
A leading developer in its joint venture development of up to 2 million square feet along the East River in Queens, New York.
A privately held investment company in connection with the joint-venture equity investment in five industrial/commercial properties in New Jersey and Maryland, valued in excess of $30 million.
A real estate investor in the formation of a joint venture with a prominent real estate private equity fund for investment in a multifamily property in the Dallas, Texas, suburbs.
A national developer in connection with the conveyance of its joint venture interests in a 1 million-square-foot industrial and retail facility.
A leading private equity firm in connection with the sale of a full-service boutique hotel in Manhattan for over $70M.
A multinational social infrastructure privatization firm that is the nation's leader in public/private community development in connection with the privatization of hotels on United States military installations. This four-phase representation spanned over eight years and included the acquisition, long-term ground lease, development, construction, renovation, demolition, and financing of a portfolio of approximately 14,000 hotel rooms on 41 military installations across 26 states, including Hawaii, California, Alaska, New York, and Texas, plus Puerto Rico. (The hotels are flagged as Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites, and Candlewood Suites hotels.) The initial budget for the development of new and renovated hotels for this project exceeded $1 billion. The project featured a complex financing arrangement, which included a $715 million senior loan from Bank of America, a $25 million junior loan from Behringer Harvard, and a $21.5 million subordinate loan from Lend Lease (US) Capital Inc. The first phase of this project was awarded the "North American Real Estate Deal of the Year" by Project Finance magazine.
A hotel chain headquartered in Mumbai in connection with its potential acquisition of the Carlyle Hotel located on the Upper East Side of New York City.
A family investment firm in the purchase of an 85 percent equity interest in an Embassy Suites hotel and a Doubletree hotel located near Wilmington, Delaware, including amendments to the respective hotel franchise agreements, the negotiation of new management agreements for the hotels, and new mortgage and mezzanine loans totaling $42 million for funding PIP improvements and the operation of the hotels.
One of the largest mutual life insurance companies as lender of a $140 million partially securitized mortgage loan secured by the Chicago Marriott Hotel.
A major privately held real estate investment firm in the purchase of distressed senior mortgage debt secured by hotels located in New Jersey.
The ownership of a casino in Las Vegas in connection with financing for its redevelopment.
An investment management firm in connection with the workout and restructuring of a construction loan for a boutique hotel in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan.
The owner of a resort in Nevada in connection with an operating agreement with a luxury hotel to manage the resort.
A life company lender in connection with an $18 million loan secured by a classic hotel located near the Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C.
A Belgium-based bank in connection with a $27 million loan secured by a hotel located at Los Angeles International Airport.
Real Estate Litigation
Represented the Borough of Saddle River, New Jersey, in an eminent domain matter in which we obtained the reversal of a multimillion-dollar jury verdict arising from a 10-day trial on just compensation. The Supreme Court of New Jersey agreed with our client's position that the jury should not have heard speculative evidence regarding a future zoning change in calculating just compensation and remanded the case for a new trial.
Represented Getty Realty Corp., a REIT, in successfully obtaining a judgment that Getty was entitled to complete contractual indemnification, including reimbursement of attorneys' fees from its tenant for the costs of investigating and remediating environmental contamination.
Represented a plaintiff in a partnership dispute involving a large apartment complex. After a two-year bench trial, the judge found the defendants liable on all claims including civil racketeering, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and breaches of the partnership agreement and partnership law.
Successfully represented The Value Group in opposing certification of a putative class of tenants challenging an early termination fee on their residential leases.
Represented a private equity fund that is the leading owner and developer of commercial real estate in Manhattan in connection with the prosecution of commercial landlord/tenant actions in its New York City portfolio.
Defended Arito Inc. against a plaintiff's claim that it had exercised an option to purchase a Manhattan condominium. After a bench trial, the court denied the plaintiff's request for specific performance and held that the option to purchase had expired. The judgment was unanimously affirmed on appeal by a five-judge appellate panel.
Successfully defended Filene's Basement LLC in a dispute arising from the renegotiation of a lease for retail space in Washington, D.C., in which the landlord alleged that the new rent schedule resulted from a mutual mistake.
Prevailed at trial on behalf of Cedarbridge Development LLC in an action in lieu of prerogative writ. Local residents sought to invalidate an option agreement and unwind a land grant by Lakewood Township to Cedarbridge, claiming that the agreement was an unlawful gift of public lands for private use in violation of the New Jersey Constitution.
Represented Liz Claiborne in an order to show cause filed by a losing bidder to enjoin the sale of the company's headquarters in New Jersey. The case settled after extensive discovery.
Obtained summary judgment and an award of attorneys' fees on behalf of a real estate developer in an insurance coverage litigation against Chicago Title Insurance Co., in which we established that Chicago Title had a duty to defend attacks on title.
Represented Centrum Financial Services Inc., a wealth management firm, in a title insurance dispute against Chicago Title in connection with a first position lien that Chicago Title insured on Centrum's behalf. The property was fraudulently transferred, leaving Centrum's lien unsatisfied, but Chicago Title denied its obligations under the title policy. Following litigation, Chicago Title resolved the claim subject to a confidential settlement agreement.
Represented a property owners' association that operates a multibillion-dollar development project, including 6,000 residential units, 1.2 million square feet of office space, 375,000 square feet of retail space, and a 400-room hotel, spanning three towns. Our representation included construction defect and insurance coverage litigation, in which we were able to secure coverage for alleged property damage, estimated to exceed $60 million.
Served as lead counsel to the official committee of unsecured creditors in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases of Parking Company Airports America, one of the largest owners/operators of airport parking lots in the United States. Successfully negotiated an agreement that allowed for the sale of substantially all of the debtors' parking lots and resulted in a substantial distribution to the unsecured creditors.
Represented the plaintiff in a bankruptcy court trial in which we established that the transfer of a four-story office building had been a fraudulent conveyance and obtained a damages award on behalf of our client.