Sunday, July 15, 2012

Another Luxury Hotel to Rise in NoMad Area

SBE Entertainment is teaming with New York-based Moin Development on a new 190-room luxury hotel at 444 Park Ave. South, at the corner of 30th Street. The $85-million project includes a full gut of the existing 14-story office building, add six floors,and then construct a 20-story hotel with three bars, a restaurant and a rooftop bar. It would be the first SLS Hotel in NYC, and is slated to open in mid-2013.

The red-hot NoMad area, will soon welcome yet another new hotel to the territory. Sam Nazarian, the Los Angeles restaurant and nightclub owner, plans to open the $85 million SLS Hotel New York, the first in the city for the luxury brand.

His company, SBE Entertainment Group LLC, is teaming with New York-based Moin Development Corp. on the 190-room project at 444 Park Ave. South, at 30th Street. They will gut and add on to an existing office building to construct a 20-story hotel with a rooftop bar, according to Nazarian, chairman and chief executive officer of SBE. It would be the third SLS Hotel in the U.S. and is slated to open by mid-2013.

SLS Hotel New York will open in an area that’s become a hotbed for new hotels. The Gansevoort Park Avenue is one block south, part of a crop of much buzzed-about newcomers on or around 29th Street including the Ace, NoMad, Lola and Eventi hotels.

SBE, which also owns Hyde nightclubs and the Katsuya and Cleo restaurant brands, has said it wants to build SLS into a chain of boutique hotels that would attract high-end leisure and business travelers. New York City hotels had an occupancy rate of 76 percent this year through April, the third-best among the top 25 U.S. markets, behind Miami and Oahu, Hawaii.

SBE took six years to find a suitable deal in New York City, and competed against such companies as Hyatt Hotels and Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant Group for the Park Avenue property. Nazarian agreed in March to the joint venture in which Moin will own 90 percent and SBE will have the rest.

The hotel will be designed by Philippe Starck, who also worked on the SLS Hotel South Beach in Florida.

Nazarian envisions adding SLS properties in uptown Manhattan and the Soho neighborhood and is scouting New York locations for Redbury, his new high-end, extended-stay brand. SBE, which also operates an SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, expects to make a deal this year for an SLS in Seattle.

In May, SBE obtained $300 million in funding to redevelop the landmark Sahara Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. It is scheduled to open in 2014 as the SLS Las Vegas. But NYC, which Nazarian, 36, has loved since he attended NYU, is his top priority.