U.S. Bank Lends Vornado a Hand in Manhattan

Vornado Realty Trust has completed the second refinancing in the last three years for the office and retail property that features one of a handful of malls in the Big Apple.

By Gail Kalinoski, Contributing Editor

100 W. 33rd St., Manhattan
100 W. 33rd St., Manhattan

Vornado Realty Trust has completed a $580 million refinancing of 100 W. 33rd St. in New York City – the second refinancing in the last three years for the 1.1 million-square-foot office and retail property that features one of the few malls in Manhattan.

The deal, arranged by U.S. Bank as the lead left and administrative agent, netted the Paramus, N.J.-based REIT $242 million in profit, according to a prepared statement from Vornado. Landesbank Baden-Württemberg and DekaBank served as co-leads and syndication agents. Based in Minneapolis, U.S. Bank is the fifth-largest commercial bank in the United States and has been growing its East Coast presence, particularly in corporate banking, capital markets and commercial real estate.

The loan is interest only at LIBOR plus 1.65 percent and matures in July 2020, the Vornado statement noted.

In March 2012, Vornado refinanced 100 W. 33rd St., which has 851,000 square feet of office space anchored by global advertising agency FCB and 256,000 square feet occupied by the Manhattan Mall. Featuring a street-level JC Penney, it’s one of a handful of malls in Manhattan and is located a block from Madison Square Garden and Penn Station. The 2012 deal, one of several refinancing transactions the REIT did at that time on some of its Manhattan assets, came in the form of a loan bearing interest at 2.74 percent, or LIBOR plus 2.5 percent. Vornado made an $87 million profit on that refinancing.

The property was originally built in 1910 as a flagship department store and spans the entire Sixth Avenue block between 32nd and 33rd Streets. Vornado acquired the property, including 250,000 square feet of additional air rights, for $689 million in cash in early 2007.

The refinancing of a major mixed-use Manhattan property comes in the same week that Vornado announced it had acquired 260 11th Ave., a 235,000-square-foot office property in West Chelsea leased to the City of New York through 2021. The deal also included a 10,000-square-foot parking lot and additional air rights, according to a Vornado prepared statement. Located south of Hudson Yards, the $20 billion mega mixed-use project going up on Manhattan’s Far West side, Vornado said it “intends to redevelop and expand the property to serve the supply-constrained West Chelsea office market.”

Vornado, which will pay $3.9 million in rent a year, said in its statement that the transaction was structured as a 99-year ground lease with an option to purchase the land for $110 million. It noted the purchase was made by issuing 813,900 newly issued operating partnership stock units.