Carnegie Hall Tower Lands $325M Refi

This marks Singer & Bassuk's fifth financing arranged for the 60-story skyscraper since 1988. The César Pelli-designed iconic building won an Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects.

By Gail Kalinoski

Carnegie Hall Tower, New York
Carnegie Hall Tower, New York

TF Cornerstone, the owner and developer of Carnegie Hall Tower, a trophy office building in Manhattan’s Plaza District, reached out to a familiar name for help in securing a $325 million loan from Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. to refinance the 60-story skyscraper—The Singer & Bassuk Organization.

It marks the fifth time the boutique real estate finance brokerage and advisory firm has arranged debt for the 555,000-square-foot building at 152 W. 57th St., which was developed in 1989. That area along West 57th Street is known as Billionaires’ Row for the super-luxury residential properties built there in recent years.

The 15-year mortgage has an interest rate of less than 4 percent, according to the Wall Street Journal.

“We have enormous pride in the work that our firm has put into developing, owning and managing Carnegie Hall Tower over the last 30 years. This financing is yet another significant milestone in this property’s storied history. We are thrilled to have worked with our trusted advisors at The Singer & Bassuk Organization and with Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. to have successfully refinanced the property,” Jeremy Shell, executive vice president of TF Cornerstone, said in a prepared statement.

Shell, son-in-law of TF Cornerstone Chairman & Co-Founder K. Thomas Elghanayan, is responsible for the company’s acquisitions and financing efforts and was directly involved in the refinancing of the tower.

“This is truly a multi-generational property and one that the family is extremely proud of. Our senior generation was transformational in extending the Plaza District to the west with the development of Carnegie Hall Tower. Now the younger generation hopes to continue that legacy and maintain a beautiful and unique office building,” added Jake Elghanayan, TF Cornerstone’s senior vice president, who heads the commercial division and is Tom Elghanayan’s son.

Andrew Singer, chairman & CEO of The Singer & Bassuk Organization, noted it was the fifth financing his firm has arranged for Carnegie Hall Tower since 1988 and said SBO was honored to complete another “milestone financing” for the property.

The refinancing replaces a $135 million 10-year loan from Landesbank Baden-Württemberg, which carried an interest rate of 6.25 percent and was due to expire Oct. 11, according to Yardi Matrix. The building also carried a $190 million CMBS loan placed as part of a CMBS pool 10 years ago. Debt service payments of $956,292 per month were payable interest only with a note rate of 5.957 percent through Oct. 10, when the principal balance was due, Yardi Matrix data showed.

Carnegie Hall Tower was designed by César Pelli and won an Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects. Many floors offer 360-degree views of Central Park, the New York City Skyline, the Hudson and East rivers and Atlantic Ocean.

Tenants include Greystone, Healthcor Partners Management LP; RHO Capital Partners, Sberbank CIB USA Inc., Grubman Shire & Meiselas, and Kingdon Capital Management. The building has only about 38,000 square feet of space available for lease at an average rate of $65 per square foot, according to Yardi Matrix.

TF Cornerstone with Principals Tom and Fred Elghanayan is focused on acquisition, development, construction and management of Class A residential, commercial and retail properties. The firm’s portfolio totals over 8 million square feet throughout New York City and Washington, D.C. In addition to Carnegie Hall Tower, other Manhattan office buildings owned by TFC include 645 Madison Ave., 230 Park Ave. South and 387 Park Ave. South. The firm’s Washington, D.C., office holdings include The Gallup Building, 1620 Eye St., NW., and 2021 K. St., NW.

Image courtesy of Carnegie Hall Tower website