Tag Archives: Eric Benaim\

Kaufman Arts District’s first luxury condominium hits market


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Image courtesy of Modern Spaces

A luxury condominium — the first of its kind in the newly designated Kaufman Arts District —has hit the market and seen instant success in just one week.

Real estate firm Modern Spaces has began sales for The Marx, located at 34-32 35th St. in Astoria, and in the first week 20 percent of the building has already been sold.

The Marx offers 33 one- and two-bedroom units at prices starting in the $600,000s and two-bedroom apartments priced under $1 million.

“The Kaufman Arts District is an established, dynamic neighborhood that gives people access to the best creative institutions the city had to offer. Living at The Marx presents a unique opportunity to move into a vibrant Astoria neighborhood that is rich with amenities, dining and service retail to serve the families that have long called the area home,” said Eric Benaim, CEO of Modern Spaces.

The building features homes with open layouts and hardwood floors, and many of the apartments have private terraces. Kitchens feature custom cabinetry, a breakfast bar and high-quality appliances. Master bathrooms include rainhead and hand-held glass-enclosed showers and heated towel bars.

Amenities at The Marx include a rooftop terrace with gas Weber grills, a private bike room, a fitness room, a virtual doorman security system and laundry facilities.

“We are very excited that The Marx has appealed to so many buyers. It’s the first luxury development that has opened since the area has been designated the Kaufman Arts District and shares the same streets where popular shows such as ‘Orange is the New Black,’ ‘Nurse Jackie’ and ‘Sesame Street’ are filmed. We think the building — like its entertainment neighbors — will be a big hit for many different types of buyers,” Benaim said.

The seven-story condominium, which is being developed by a joint venture between Kaufman Astoria Studios and Procida Companies, gets its name from the property’s history located on the site where the Marx Brothers filmed movies such as “Animal Crackers” and “Coconauts.”

The Kaufman Arts District, designated in 2014, includes institutions such as Kaufman Astoria Studios, Museum of the Moving Image and the Queens Council on the Arts.

“We’re thrilled to bring even more life to this thriving and historic neighborhood. Hundreds of professionals visit and work in our studios, and many have fallen in love with Astoria and all it offers,” said Hal Rosenbluth, CEO of Kaufman Astoria Studios. “We’re delighted to offer the homes at The Marx to our regular constituents and newcomers alike.”

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Average Long Island City condo price nearing $900K


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Chart courtesy of Modern Spaces 

Prospective buyers of condos in Long Island City will need to have deep pockets — that are hopefully getting deeper.

With the heavy demand for condos in the burgeoning neighborhood, the price of a condo in the market crossed the $1,000 per square foot marker in the first quarter of the year, according to a report by broker Modern Spaces, which expects prices to continue to rise even higher.

Homebuyers pay an average of $877,778 for a condo in Long Island City now, according to the brokerage’s Q1 2015 Market Report.

“Long Island City home prices have been increasing steadily over the past few years,” said Eric Benaim, CEO of Modern Spaces. “The demand for new homes here remains strong and will continue to drive prices higher.”

Last year, no new condos came to the market, according to Benaim. But some condo buildings planned for construction will begin sales of units this year, bringing an influx of new inventory.

Modern Spaces recently announced the beginning of marketing for the 39 units in Liv @ Murray Park North at 11-35 45th Ave., and the 23 units at The Corner planned for 47-28 11th St.

Rendering courtesy of Modern Spaces

Liv @ Murray Park North

Specific prices in these buildings have yet to be announced, but representatives said studios will start in the $400,000s in Liv @ Murray Park North.

That will be a deal for prospective homeowners, since the average price for condominiums in LIC is $678,333 for a studio, $820,000 for a one-bedroom unit, and $1.1 million for a two-bedroom apartment, according to the report.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

More condos coming to feed Long Island City’s needs


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Rendering courtesy of Modern Spaces

Not long after starting marketing for the newest condo building in Long Island City, real estate brokerage firm Modern Spaces announced Thursday that it will soon begin marketing yet another condo in the hot neighborhood.

Liv @ Murray Park North, which is located at 11-35 45th Ave., will begin sales in June, feeding the growing demand for condos in LIC.

The project by George Xu, owner of Century Development, offers a mix of 39 luxury studios and one- and two-bedroom apartments in six floors. Prices will start around $400,000 in the Raymond Chan Architects-designed building, and residents can expect to start moving in by the end of the year.

“This new condo project further indicates that demand for permanent homes here continues to be high,” said Eric Benaim, Modern Spaces founder and CEO. “People not only want to be in Long Island City, but they want to put down roots here.”

The units at Liv @ Murray Park North will have luxury finishes such as hardwood flooring and electric radiant heated floors. Bathrooms will have porcelain tiles and kitchens will feature top brand-name appliances.

The building will have a range of amenities, including bike storage, free Wi-Fi in common areas, a fitness center, a social lounge in the lobby and a common rooftop. Also, parking will be available for residents.

Liv @ Murray Park North will be the first in a series of buildings by Century Development, which will include Liv @ Hart Street and Liv @ Murray Park South.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Modern Spaces set to open new Astoria office in October


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Logo courtesy of Modern Spaces  

Modern Spaces is now batting six for six in the retail estate office game.

The firm, which Eric Benaim launched in Long Island City in 2008, announced Monday that it is opening its sixth location in six years and its second in Astoria in October, hoping to hit a home run with the area as it did with its original neighborhood.

In a recent interview with The Courier, Benaim said he sees tons of potential in Astoria, which has already begun to see an influx of new development, and is why the neighborhood was chosen for the new office at 34-16 30th Ave.

“We are very happy to expand our Astoria reach with this new office, and are proud to be part of this community,” Benaim said. “The timing is opportune for us, as we have three new projects in Astoria that will be hitting the market early next year.”

The new office will be about 2,000 square feet and will house 25 agents. It will also have an outdoor garden space for events.

Lifelong Astoria resident Greg Kyroglou, who is the current managing director of the first Astoria location at 29-20 23rd Ave., has been promoted to managing director of the new office. He will also run the original Astoria location as well.

RECOMMENDED STORIES 

Q&A: Modern Spaces CEO explains real estate in LIC


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Donna Dotan Photography Inc.

Eric Benaim founded real estate firm Modern Spaces in Long Island City in 2008, and within a handful of years led the explosion of residential interest in the neighborhood. Over the years, he expanded the company from LIC to Astoria, Manhattan and Brooklyn, and recently, Modern Spaces announced the launching of its commercial and investment property division, tapping into another side of the market.

In a question-and-answer session with The Courier, Benaim explained the current status of real estate in Long Island City and the transformation of the neighborhood.

Courier: How did you get inspired to start working in Long Island City?

Benaim: I guess I was always a Queens boy, and I started focusing in LIC back in 2005. I was a broker focusing mostly in Manhattan and at the time there were pretty much no brokers in the neighborhood over here, so I figured I would try to make this my niche. Just walking around you see the views of Manhattan, you see there’s a lot of potential over here and I stuck with it, and obviously it paid off. The neighborhood has changed dramatically since 2005.

Courier: Did you really think it [the transformation of LIC] would happen so quickly?

Benaim: No. Literally, from my window I see cranes everywhere, and it’s just crazy to see my skyline changing every day.

Courier: What is the real estate market in LIC like now?

Benaim: There is a lot of development. There was not that many condos being developed over the last couple of years, but condos are about to come back strong. We are seeing a lot of condo projects that are going to be coming online probably by first and second quarter of next year. And in regards to rental projects, a lot developers are doing stuff now whereas before it was predominately TF Cornerstone and Rockrose. now you are seeing a lot of big developers coming into the neighborhood that were never here before.

Courier: Why do you think there is a switch from rentals to condos?

Benaim: Because land prices have gone up a lot and when land prices go up so much it just doesn’t make sense to do a rental because the return on your investment does not really pay out. So it just makes more sense financially to do a condo rather than a rental. Rental projects that are coming along, these are projects sites that were acquired probably a year or more ago when land prices were a little more affordable than they are now.

Courier: Is LIC already a successful live, work and play community?

Benaim: I think [live, work, and play] has been established here. I remember when I first started showing clients around the neighborhood, there really wasn’t anything here. Not even a supermarket. Now we have three supermarkets already, and a fourth is opening up at the LINC, the Rockrose project in Court Square. There are a whole lot of restaurants— you know, restaurants open up here every week and now we are seeing more and more boutiques and stores opening up. Pretty much everything you need is here now. And regarding play, so we do have the bars and the night life now and LIC is a huge cultural destination. We have the LIC Arts Open, the Taste of LIC, MoMA PS1, the Chocolate Factory Theater and the LIC Flea. So there’s really a lot to do as well.

Courier: What has spurred you to go into the commercial side?

Benaim: We’ve done a little commercial these past few years, mostly like retail leasing. But a lot of our clients, whether it’s landlords who we’re doing their rentals for in walk-ups or if it’s a developer who we’re marketing their building or working with them, they never really came to us in the past, because they knew us as being residential brokers. So it was kind of like business that we lost out on. And it just seemed like the right time. Queens as a whole is in the spotlight right now and there’s not really a commercial company that can offer commercial services but still insight in the residential market.

Courier: What is the next neighborhood that has potential?

Benaim: We do see a lot of potential in Astoria, and other areas like Woodside, Sunnyside, Flushing and areas like Rego Park, where we just opened up a building called The Rego Modern. We rented 10 in the first open house [at The Rego Modern] and for high prices also, which they weren’t used to seeing. So that just shows that there is a lot of interest in Queens. Being a Queens boy myself it’s just nice to see that Queens is getting the spotlight that Brooklyn had stolen from us.

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Report shows size of LIC homes shrinking, prices rising


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Chart courtesy Modern Spaces

Long Island City home sizes are shrinking, but the prices are not.

A report by residential brokerage firm Modern Spaces shows that while the average square footage of apartments of new developments are decreasing in the burgeoning neighborhood, the average price per square foot is rising.

In LIC, the average apartment size in new developments has decreased 41 percent from Q1 2013 to just 828 square feet by the first half of 2014. But during that same period, the average price per square foot of homes in the neighborhood has risen 23 percent from $768 to $944.

Despite the rising prices, Eric Benaim, founder and CEO of Modern Spaces, said the decreasing sizes are actually helping to keep prices from skyrocketing in the community.

“Demand for new homes is very high in Long Island City and Astoria and we are seeing an increased number of developments in both areas,” Benaim said. “In Long Island City, developers are building more efficiently-sized residences, helping to keep overall home prices down. This trend is helping to differentiate Long Island City from the rest of the New York market. People can buy beautiful new homes in a prime location with incredible amenities without over-the-top home prices.”

The report also found the trend of rising prices in Astoria. Average price per square foot for new homes jumped to $820 per square feet by the first half of 2014, up 32 percent from Q1 2013, when it was $619.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

LIC Summit to highlight booming western Queens neighborhood


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo: Peter Aaron/Esto. Courtesy of Museum of Moving Image

The various traits that contribute to the boom of Long Island City will be the talk of a day-long conference dedicated to the western Queens neighborhood.

The Long Island City Partnership, along with co-hosts Modern Spaces and The Queens Courier, will showcase the first LIC Summit, called “LIC Now: Perspectives and Prospects.” The day-long event will take place on Tuesday, June 17, at the Museum of the Moving Image, located at 36-01 35th Ave., starting at 8 a.m. and will be followed by a cocktail reception and networking at 4:30 p.m. at Kaufman Astoria Studios.

“The summit is intended to really highlight the incredible authentic mixed-use community that is Long Island City and it is important not just locally but citywide and nationwide,” said Elizabeth Lusskin, president of the LIC Partnership. “It’s also an opportunity to dive into the issues that are continuing challenges for the community and a moment to take stock on how we should plan for the future.”

The LIC Summit will highlight Long Island City’s real estate market, infrastructure, arts, cultural, television and film community, industrial sector and expected future as a technology hub.

“Long Island City is experiencing an explosive change right now and is a huge economic driver for not only western Queens, but the city as a whole,” said Eric Benaim, CEO and president of Modern Spaces. “This summit was created to address the ongoing and emerging trends and needs of this transformative neighborhood.”

The keynote address will be delivered by the city’s Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen, and other featured speakers include Borough President Melinda Katz, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and many more.

“This is really meant to be a dialogue between the panelists with the audience. Everybody who is there is part of the content of the conference,” said Lusskin, who hopes the LIC Summit will become an annual event. “We really hope that we will have a really diverse and high quality audience that is both local constituents and citywide leaders.”

For more information and to register click here.

 

Below are the categories for the LIC Summit panels, which will each be moderated by experts and leaders in their industries.

Keynote Panel – LIC: Big City, Big Picture 9:15–10 a.m.

Services & Amenities: Current Successes, New Opportunities – 10:15-11 a.m.

Television & Film – 10:15-11 a.m.

Commercial & Industrial Real Estate
11:20 a.m.-noon

Keynote Speaker: Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen
1-1:45 p.m.

LIC as a Tech District – 2-2:45 p.m.

Residential Real Estate – 2-2:45 p.m.

Arts & Culture – 3-3:45 p.m.

 

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Woodside luxury building The Icon52 fully leased


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of Donna Dotan Photography

Western Queens real estate continues to show that it is hot, as another luxury building becomes fully leased in less than two months.

The Icon52, a 66-unit apartment building located at 52-05 Queens Blvd., has been 100 percent leased by real estate and brokerage company Modern Spaces. The building is the company’s first rental project in Woodside.

“Being able to completely lease out the building in such a short amount of time is extremely gratifying, given it was our first project of what we hope will be many in the neighborhood,” said Eric Benaim, CEO and president of Modern Spaces. “We predict The Icon52 will set the standard for future rentals coming to the Woodside area.”

Each unit in The Icon52, ranging from studios to two-bedroom apartments, features hardwood floors, high ceilings, kitchens with stainless steel appliances and modern bathrooms. Rental prices range from $1,500 to $2,600.

Amenities include a virtual doorman, laundry and bicycle storage room. Residents also have access to a landscaped rooftop deck with chaise lounges, parking garage, barbecue and sitting areas.

The Icon52 also has convenient access to the No. 7 subway line and is just minutes away from Manhattan.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

LIC luxury condo The Bindery reaches 100 percent sold mark


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of Donna Dotan Photography Inc.

Long Island City real estate continues on its hot streak, as another luxury condominium reaches its 100 percent sold mark.

The Bindery, a 20-unit residential building located at 43-37 11th St., has been completely sold by real estate and brokerage company Modern Spaces. The building is one of the first residential properties in the area that sold for over $1,000 per square foot with one of the homes selling for $1,166 per square foot after coming onto the market in April.

“The tremendous pace at which the Bindery homes were sold speaks volumes of the continued demand of luxury living in the area,” said Eric Benaim, CEO and president of Modern Spaces. “Everything from the name to the design of the building hit a note with buyers and we couldn’t be more pleased to have brought this project to completion in less than a year.”

The condominium, developed by NY Lions Group and Craig Axelrod, is made up of seven floors including studios, one- and two-bedroom apartments. The interiors of the building feature wood flooring with a reclaimed effect throughout, exposed brick walls, gourmet kitchens, luxury bathrooms, and many of the units come with their own private balconies, terraces or garden.

“The success of The Bindery is owed to its personality – residents today are looking for more character in their homes and have really connected with the building’s homage to the neighborhood’s bookbinding history,” said Jennifer Dorfmann, managing director of sales for Modern Spaces. The sell-out of The Bindery speaks to Long Island City’s continued transformation into a cultural hotspot.”

Some of the amenities of the building include a landscaped rooftop, fitness center and a virtual doorman. To enter The Bindery, residents will go through a library instead of a lobby, keeping up with the inspiration of the historical book binding factories in Long Island City.

The Bindery is also close to the E, M, 7 and G subway lines, and is just minutes away from Manhattan.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Court Square’s first feng shui residential building hits 100 percent sold mark


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of Donna Dotan photography

One feng shui-certified luxury residential building in Long Island City has reached the top.

Real estate firm Modern Spaces announced the luxury condominium called The Vista, located at 44-15 Purves St., has hit its 100 percent sold mark.

The Vista was feng shui-certified by consultant Laura Cerrano of Feng Shui Long Island. Cerrano advised the developers on every part of the design and construction of the building since the beginning.

In accordance to feng shui principles, the luxury building does not have a fourth floor, residences do not have balconies adjacent to the living room and entrances to each home will not face another interior door.

“Working with a feng shui master during the entire process of this project has been an incredible learning experience for us and has provided even further insight into the fen shui principles,” Eric Benaim, CEO and president of Modern Space said. “It’s interesting to see how every layout, every wall has been meticulously designed and built to embrace the feng shui beliefs.”

The Vista has 15 floors with 48 studios, one- and two- bedroom apartments which range from 475 to 965 square feet and with starting prices of $360,000. The residences include hardwood-oak flooring, gourmet kitchens, and spa-like master and guest baths.

The building features solar panels, and a glass façade with bay windows and balconies. Some of the amenities include a landscaped rooftop terrace, fitness center with a yoga room, entertainment room, Wi-Fi, doggie spa, bike storage and a parking garage.

It was developed by Lions Group and Emmy Homes and has access to the E, M 7 and G subway lines.

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Real estate panel discusses booming Long Island City


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Angy Altamirano

The Long Island City real estate community gathered for a morning discussion of the area’s market at a special breakfast on Thursday, April 25.

Local real estate entrepreneurs met and shared their ideas over bagels and coffee. At a panel discussion moderated by realtor David Brause, participants shared views on the booming LIC real estate industry’s present and future.

Panelists included Eric Benaim, president and CEO of Modern Spaces, Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of Miller Samuel Inc., Andrew Nimmer, principal of The Local Hostels, Michael Phillips, chief operating officer of Jamestown and Jason Sheftell, real estate editor for the New York Daily News.

 

The panelists discussed what they believe makes LIC a destination for visitors and people looking to settle down. They noted the easy public transportation access, closeness to Manhattan and the affordability of the community’s real estate.

According to Benaim, whose business has gone from residential sales and leasing to project development and marketing, prices for real estate in the area range from about $2,500 to $50,000,

“I think Long Island City is the gateway to all of Queens,” said Sheftell. “It’s the very beginning for this neighborhood.”

 

The Industry Arrives in Long Island City


| smosco@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of Modern Spaces

The expansion of LIC continues. On October 19, Eric Benaim and Ted Kokkoris of Modern Spaces hosted at a premier party to announce that the real estate firm is now marketing The Industry – a condo developed by Silvercup Studios. Guests packed the space at 21-45 44th Drive and were treated to music by DJ Cerok, food by LIC Market and photography by Jesse Winter.

This luxury 76-unit condominium apartment building in vibrant LIC was developed by Stuart and Alan Suna, founders of Silvercup Studios – the city’s largest full-service film & television production facility. The studio is also in LIC and it’s iconic sign can be seen from The Industry’s magnificent rooftop.

With beautiful views of the Manhattan skyline, modern amenities, a landscaped rooftop terrace, and state-of-the-art fitness center, The Industry has everything you need for luxury living in historic, exciting LIC. Check out www.theindustrylic.com for more info.

New condo, The Industry, opens in Long Island City


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

The expansion of LIC continues. On October 19, Eric Benaim and Ted Kokkoris of Modern Spaces hosted at a premier party to announce that the real estate firm is now marketing The Industry – a condo developed by Silvercup Studios. Guests packed the space at 21-45 44th Drive and were treated to music by DJ Cerok, food by LIC Market and photography by Jesse Winter.

This luxury 76-unit condominium apartment building in vibrant LIC was developed by Stuart and Alan Suna, founders of Silvercup Studios – the city’s largest full-service film & television production facility. The studio is also in LIC and it’s iconic sign can be seen from The Industry’s magnificent rooftop.

With beautiful views of the Manhattan skyline, modern amenities, a landscaped rooftop terrace, and state-of-the-art fitness center, The Industry has everything you need for luxury living in historic, exciting LIC. Check out www.theindustrylic.com for more info.