Last month, the Chetrit Group began converting the 37-story, 855,000-square-foot Sony Tower – the office building at 550 Madison Avenue, between East 55th and 56th streets, in Midtown – into 113 condominiums, a 170-key hotel, and 25,451 square feet of retail space. Now, Olayan America (the U.S. branch of Saudi Arabia-based Olayan Group), with minority investor Chelsfield, is in contract to acquire the tower for more than $1.3 billion, according to The Real Deal, officially stopping the project in its tracks. The new owners will not follow through with the conversion and will lease the building as office space. Chetrit is selling the building, most likely because of the cooling ultra-luxury residential market, for at least $200 million more than what they payed for it in 2013. The soon-to-be new owners have secured $300 million in mezzanine debt and a $600 million mortgage for the acquisition. The sale is expected to close in May.
550 Madison Avenue
Early last month, the first rendering surfaced of Chetrit Group’s planned hotel-condo conversion of the 37-story, 855,000 square-foot office building at 550 Madison Avenue, between East 55th and 56th Streets in Midtown. Sony Tower’s 14th through 20th floors will be converted into a 170-key and will be operated by Oetker Collection Masterpiece Hotels. The 21st through 43rd floors will be converted into 113 condominiums, but Real Estate Weekly now has details on the three stories of redesigned retail at the bottom of the building. The retail space, formerly occupied by Sony, will measure 25,451 square feet in total and will be split into four separate leases. Robert A.M. Stern is designing, and completion of the conversion is expected in early 2018.
Back in 2013, Chetrit Group acquired the 37-story, 855,000 square-foot office building at 550 Madison Avenue, between East 55th and 56th Streets in Midtown, for $1.1 billion. Now the developer has released a partial rendering and details of the planned conversion of the building known as Sony Tower and previously the AT&T Building, per Curbed. Floors 21 through 43 will be converted into 113 condominiums and the lower portion of the building will contain a 170-key hotel, featuring 60 suites and a slew of amenities. Robert A.M. Stern Architects is designing, and completion is expected in early 2018. The Philip Johnson-designed tower originally opened in 1984.