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Real Estate - Transactional

Kasowitz’s transactional real estate group represents, among others, developers, private and institutional investors, opportunity funds, real estate investment trusts (REITs), lenders and servicers, and major corporations in connection with real estate-related matters.

The firm’s attorneys have extensive experience in development of office buildings, shopping centers, residential properties, hotels and casinos, and mixed-use projects throughout the United States; acquisitions and dispositions of single properties and property portfolios; acquisitions and participations of mortgage and mezzanine debt; workouts and restructurings on behalf of borrowers and lenders; financings of real estate properties and projects on behalf of borrowers and lenders; sale-leaseback transactions; office, restaurant and retail leasing on behalf of landlords and tenants; partnership agreements, LLC agreements, and other forms of joint ventures; real estate fund formation and REITs; and gaming and lodging.

Notable representative transactions handled by the real estate group since its launch in 2011 include:

Development and Leasing

  • New Valley/Witkoff Group, in the acquisition, joint venturing, financing and development of a mixed-use retail, signage and hotel project known as Times Square Gateway Center, at 701 Seventh Avenue, New York.
  • JDS Development Group, in connection with the acquisition, joint venturing, financing and development of the mixed-use Steinway project on West 57th Street, New York. 
  • Boston Properties, in connection with 250 West 55th Street, New York (including the 260,000 square foot Kaye Scholer lease) and 601 Lexington Avenue, New York (including the 500,000 square foot Citibank lease).
  • DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners, in the sale, joint venturing and development of a million square foot mixed-use project, located at Tysons Corner, Virginia.
  • Fir Tree Partners, in joint ventures with operating partners to acquire real estate assets throughout the United States, including Texas and Tennessee. 
  • Forest City Ratner Companies, in connection with One Pierrepont Plaza and 1 MetroTech Center in Brooklyn, New York.
  • Extell Development Company, in connection with the GEM Tower on East 47th Street, New York.
  • New Valley, in connection with a joint venture investment in a residential project on East 68th Street, New York, a joint venture investment to convert an office building to residential in Tribeca and a joint venture to develop a hotel/condominium project in the West Village.

Capital Markets and Financings

  • Cantor Commercial Real Estate, as loan origination counsel for its CMBS platform.
  • Starwood Capital Group, in connection with the acquisition and participation of mezzanine debt.
  • New Valley, in connection with a joint venture to acquire mortgage debt secured by a portfolio of California office properties and a joint venture to acquire a multi-family portfolio in Maryland.
  • Atalaya Capital Management, in the acquisition of loans, REO, and credit assets across asset class and performance categories.

Acquisitions and Dispositions

  • Africa Israel, in connection with the $165 million sale of the Clock Tower Building at 5 Madison Avenue, New York.
  • Starwood Capital Group, in connection with the acquisition of the leasehold interest at 1372 Broadway, New York.
  • Rouse Properties, in connection with the acquisition and financing of shopping centers.
  • DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners, in connection with the acquisition of commercial properties in New York City.
  • Starwood Capital Group, in connection with the acquisition of 435 West 50th Street.
  • American Realty Capital Properties, in connection with the acquisition of 300 commercial properties.

Workouts and Restructurings

  • Borders Group, Inc., with respect to the disposition of real estate assets throughout the country in connection with its bankruptcy and liquidation.
  • Capital Trust, in connection with the restructuring of a mezzanine loan, and a mortgage loan secured by property located in Miami, Florida.
  • DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners, in connection with the modification of mortgage debt secured by a resort hotel in the Caribbean.
  • The Related Companies, in connection with mortgage loans secured by properties in New York and Michigan.
  • Capital Trust, as special servicer in the restructuring and foreclosure of highly securitized debt secured by the Marriott Waikiki.
  • Five Mile Capital Partners, as special servicer in the workout and foreclosure of securitized debt secured by a 39 property, 13 state shopping center portfolio.
  • GFI Capital, in connection with the restructuring of certain real estate assets in New York City and Palm Springs, California.

Gaming and Lodging

  • Penn National Gaming, in connection with the proposed Hollywood-branded destination casino, hotel, retail and entertainment center in Springfield, Massachusetts; and gaming projects in Pennsylvania, Maryland and California.
  • New Valley/Witkoff Group, in the joint venture acquisition of the Park Lane Hotel in New York City.
  • Intercontinental Hotels Group, in connection with the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Times Square, New York.
  • Morgans Hotel Group, in connection with management agreements at properties in New York, Massachusetts and Florida.
  • DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners, in connection with the development of a boutique hotel in New York City.
  • Starwood Capital Group, in connection with the acquisition of debt related to the Standard Hotel in New York City.

Tenant Representation

  • Microsoft Corporation, in connection with its New York City headquarters lease and a lease in Midtown South.
  • Havas Worldwide, in connection with its New York City headquarters lease.
  • Société Générale, in connection with its New York City headquarters lease.
  • Knight Capital, in connection with leasing and subleasing of office space throughout the United States.
  • Major League Baseball, in connection with leasing of office space in New York City.
  • BT Americas, in connection with its New York City headquarters lease.
  • ING Investment Management, in connection with its New York City headquarters lease.

Highlights 

Kasowitz Named a Leading Law Firm in Real Estate by The Legal 500

Kasowitz has been recognized by The Legal 500 as a leading firm in real estate and construction. Clients quoted by The Legal 500 describe the firm’s real estate lawyers as “superb leasing lawyers” that provide “excellent service in every way” with a “great understanding of the industry.” Real estate partners Wallace L. Schwartz and Adam M. Endick are individually recognized.


Commercial Mortgage Alert Profiles Kasowitz’s Expansion into Transactional Real Estate

 

In a recent Commercial Mortgage Alert article, Kasowitz is highlighted for the successful launch of its transactional real estate practice and the group’s impressive growth, adding new attorneys and handling numerous significant transactions within only six months since its inception.  Wallace L. Schwartz, head of the group, also discusses the future for real estate at Kasowitz, “I wouldn’t be surprised if we double in size by the end of this year.”  To read the full Commercial Mortgage Alert profile on the transactional real estate group, please click here.