Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

New York City landmark

New York City wouldn't be New York City without the Chrysler Building. It's been an integral part of the Manhattan skyline for almost 90 years and part and parcel of the city's history. The 77-story skyscraper was designed by William Van Alen. Construction started in 1928 and was completed two years later when developers handed the key over to Chrysler Corp. founder Walter P. Chrysler.

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

A-spire to be the tallest

The Chrysler Building briefly became the world's tallest structure thanks to its 185-foot spire. It beat out the Bank of Manhattan on Wall Street. However, in 1931 it was surpassed by the Empire State Building. Nonetheless, the Chrysler Building has remained impressive enough to feature in blockbuster movies such as "Independence Day" and "Men in Black 3."

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

Art deco office tower with a difference

The Chrysler Building is a fascinating skyscraper on many counts. Visitors are thrilled by its sleek, metallic ornaments as well as its luxurious interiors, featuring marble elements. The art deco building style stood for modern and urbane elements, including decorative murals and tilework. Not to forget the many gargoyles all around the building.

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

Hoping for a decent bid

The current owners of the building — an Abu Dhabi government fund and New York developer Tishman Speyer — now hope to find a buyer for the property amid stiff competition from new office building towers. Development of the Hudson Yards neighborhood is almost complete, driving prices down, too. Getting back the $800 million (€694 million) the fund paid for a 90 percent stake seems ambitious.

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

Deep-pocketed buyers, step forward!

The Manhattan office property market has cooled from its 2016 peak, The Wall Street Journal points out. On the other hand, the current volatility on stock markets might help to find an affluent buyer seeking "the security of brick and mortar in big cities," and with larger tech companies tending to favor vintage buildings, there may be enough tenants to make the project work out financially.

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

Ground lease no grounds for jubilation

Some potential buyers may be put off by the ground lease which is just as sky-high as the building itself. In 2017, you had to shell out almost $8 million. But under a renegotiated new deal, you have to pony up $32.5 million between 2019 and 2027 annually. In 2028, the ground lease will rise again to $41 million. Still interested?

Wealthy buyer wanted: New York's Chrysler Building up for sale

Elevating the new tenants' spirit

The building's owners have spent millions of dollars on maintenance. But the new buyer may have to invest even more to attract potential tenants. The nearby Empire State Building for instance has pumped over half a billion bucks into updated elevators, a luxurious restaurant, an antenna system for wireless communications plus a posh fitness center, the Wall Street Journal reports.

If you have more money than you can possibly spend, acquiring Manhattan's iconic Chrysler Building may be an option. The art deco edifice is on the block and given its prime location, don't expect to get it for a song.

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