88 Greenwich involved upgrading a rental apartment building and converting it to condominiums. The building is a 37 story structure built in 1929 for use as an office building. The partnership employing Tobin purchased the building for $250 million with $50 million budgeted for upgrading and converting it to a condominium, the Greenwich Club Residences. In any renovation, significant constraints shape the project. The art of renovation is to pick and choose among the most cost effective options to increase the appeal of the overall project to the market.
Creating the Greenwich Club
With the Greenwich Club, Tobin and the partnership were able to create value by designing very high end common spaces for all the residents, while marketing the building’s smaller unit mix to a wide audience of potential residents. Innovative features were introduced, including one of the first package room freezer/ refrigerators to hold Fresh Direct deliveries while residents were at work, and an ipod docking system near apartment entrances, with pre-wired speakers throughout the apartment. No bathrooms or kitchens were relocated, rather kitchen walls were demolished and finishes and fixtures were upgraded. Units became studios with home office, great closets, and high functionality.
The 452 unit building was developed to make the most of its best features -- high ceilings, solid construction -- while creating real value with tenant amenities such as a terrific gym facility, and a billiards room, and sky deck/party room.
The building came to market in 2007 and despite the market turmoil, the project was able to successfully complete its sales, achieving budgeted numbers.