H Hotel buys Midtown air rights from Refinery Hotel for $ 11 million

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Rendering of Hotel H, planned for 58 West 39th Street (Peter Poon Architects)

An architectural quirk is about to rise above Bryant Park.

H Hotel bought air rights for $ 11 million to build a massive overhang – a horizontal extension secured at one end – at its development site at 58 West 39th Street.

Wei Hong Wu has acquired the 23,500 square feet of development rights for a future 29-story hotel from the 13-story Refinery Hotel adjacent to 63 West 38th Street.

The air rights deal was signed in early March and registered in April, according to property records.

The cantilever, which will be a third of the width of the hotel and a quarter of its total area, will extend from the H hotel to the roof of the refinery, developed and opened in 2012 by Charles Aini.

Peter Poon is the reference architect of the project. The company and Aini did not respond to requests for comment.

H Hotel received a $ 13.5 million mortgage loan from Shanghai Commercial Bank at the same time it purchased the air rights for its overhang, property records show.

Previously, the project had received a $ 9 million loan from Cathay Bank and a $ 12.5 million loan from Taiwan’s Chang Hwa Commercial Bank. Hu paid $ 25 million for the building at the site in 2016.

As the pandemic has wiped out New York City’s tourism and business travel economy – wreaking havoc among hotel owners, operators and employees – new hotel construction is relatively robust.

More than 21,000 hotel rooms are In construction in New York, according to data company STR. In Las Vegas, the second most active market, 8,500 rooms are under construction.

Overall, new hotel construction is below pre-pandemic levels, although more rooms reopened in the first quarter in the United States than in any other country.

Lenders’ appetite for further capital spending has been curbed, according to Emanuel Grillo, a financial restructuring lawyer at law firm Baker Botts. There’s plenty of inventory to absorb the gradual return of traveling customers, Grillo said.

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