Tag Archives: TWA Flight Center

Deal approved to turn JFK’s historic TWA Flight Center into hotel complex

| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Rendering courtesy BerlinRosen

The long-range lease deal to turn the TWA Flight Center at John F. Kennedy Airport (JFK) into a hotel complex has been approved by the Port Authority’s Board of Commissioners, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Thursday afternoon.

The project calls for a 75-year lease agreement with Flight Center Hotel LLC, a partnership of MCR Development and JetBlue Airways Corporation, to remake the TWA Flight Center and its nearly 6-acre site into JFK’s only on-airport hotel.

“This administration has committed to modernizing New York’s airports for the 21st century by creating gateways worthy of New York City and ensuring travelers have the services they need,’’ Cuomo said. “At the TWA Flight Center, we are able to meet those goals while also preserving its iconic design for passengers to enjoy for decades to come.”

Astonishingly, JFK is one of the few U.S. airports that does not have an on-airport hotel. This $265 million project, which is expected to break ground in 2016, will create 3,700 jobs — including approximately 2,500 union construction and restoration jobs — and is expected to open for use in 2018.

This new hotel will include 505 hotel rooms, 40,000 square feet of meeting space, restaurants, a spa and a 10,000-square-foot observation deck. The complex will also feature two six-story hotel towers and a micro-grid energy management system, allowing the building to generate its own power.

The hotel complex will pay homage to the airport’s golden jet age era by preserving the curving 1960s-era stark white concourse with plush-red lounge area, designed by legendary architect Eero Saarinen.

“We are proud to help advance Governor Cuomo’s plan to modernize our region’s aviation infrastructure by bringing the TWA Flight Center, the most storied symbol of the Jet Age, back to life,” said Tyler Morse, MCR Development CEO. “Accessible to the general public as well as all airlines from all terminals, the 505-room hotel at the rehabilitated TWA Flight Center will be a tremendous amenity for the entire JFK International Airport. Thank you to Governor Cuomo and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for this incredible opportunity to celebrate and preserve Eero Saarinen’s historic masterpiece while also creating 3,700 construction and permanent jobs and 40,000 square feet of desperately needed onsite meeting space.”

For more information about the project, visit the developer’s website.


Real estate roundup: Tour of TWA Flight Center before transformation, two new Korean eateries coming to Astoria

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Evan P. Cordes

Touring Saarinen’s Iconic TWA Terminal Before Redevelopment

“Crowds brave enough to make their way to JFK Airport on Saturday were transported back to the 1960s. The TWA Flight Center opened its doors as part of this year’s Open House New York weekend, and some visitors were even decked out in their vintage TWA attire.” Read more [Curbed]

New French bakery just days away from opening

“A new French bakery is about to open in Hunters Point. Cannelle Patisserie, a popular French bakery that opened in Jackson Heights more than six years ago, will be opening in the next week to 10 days.” Read more [LIC Post]

Two Korean restaurants to open in Astoria

Astoria is about to get a big taste of Korea. Two new Korean restaurants are expected to open in the next month, with one located on Broadway and the other on 30th Avenue.” Read more [Astoria Post]

Douglas Elliman announced The Pearson Court Square is fully leased in just four months

“Douglas Elliman Development Marketing, is pleased to announce The Pearson Court Square, a 14-story 197-unit rental building in the increasingly popular Court Square neighborhood of Long Island City, has been fully leased in just under four months.” Read more [The Court Square Blog]

Upscale hotel may land at JFK

| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo by Evan P. Cordes

The former TWA Flight Center at JFK Airport may be closer to turning into a chic boutique hotel.

Ron Marsico, a spokesperson for the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, which controls the TWA structure, said that it’s negotiating with a developer about building a hotel at the location.

According to the Wall Street Journal, it’s Andre Balazs Properties, a developer known for high-end hotels such as the Standard group of lodgings in New York, Los Angeles and Miami Beach.

Designed by renowned architect Eero Saarinen, the TWA building was constructed in 1962, but closed in 2001 because it “no longer [met] the needs of passengers because of its many aeronautical limitations,” said the Port Authority, adding that it’s “committed to reopening this marvel of modern American architecture to the public.”

Part of that commitment included a $20 million restoration of the structure after it closed.

The TWA Flight Center also sits behind JFK’s Terminal 5 and connects to it via tubes. Terminal 5 is currently being redesigned and expanded to better serve JetBlue flights.

In February 2011, the Port Authority held a tour of the building for potential developers that were interested in incorporating a hotel into the TWA Flight Center.

That list included Andre Balazs Properties as well as Yotel, the Trump Organization, Starwood Hotels and 24 other developers.

If Andre Balazs Properties does build a hotel at the site, it would be the developer’s first in Queens and at an airport.

There are no guarantees, however, that an upscale boutique hotel at JFK would be successful, especially with the airport’s separated terminals.

“It’s very different from a lot of places around that world that are more consolidated,” Richard Barone, a transportation planner with the nonprofit Regional Plan Association, told the Wall Street Journal. “Ideally you’d like to have facilities that are more common use.”

The only other hotel located right at the airport, a Ramada, closed a few years ago, but the Port Authority is considering reopening it, said Marsico.


An inside look at the TWA Flight Center during this fall's Open House New York Weekend. (Photo by Nicholas Lemery Nantel)