NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aby Rosen and Michael Fuchs, Founders and Principals of RFR Holding LLC, and YU Liang and ZHANG Xu of Vanke, China’s largest residential real estate developer, broke ground yesterday on a new luxury residential condominium on East 53rd Street, adjacent to the landmark Seagram Building. Designed by Foster + Partners, the stunning slim white tower at 610 Lexington Avenue will rise 700 feet and 61 stories to take its place on the renowned 53rd Street architectural corridor amongst the works of luminary architects Philip Johnson, Hugh Stubbins, Edward Larrabee Barnes, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Gordon Bunshaft, Yoshio Taniguchi, Edward Durell Stone, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, and Jean Nouvel. The site is centrally located with its entrance on 53rd Street, in close proximity to the best of New York’s businesses, restaurants, shopping, museums and entertainment. RFR and Hines will work together on construction of the building through a joint development management agreement.
“The 610 Lexington Avenue project is our first in New York City, and our second in the United States. It truly reflects Vanke’s globalization objective of forging strategic partnerships with world-class developers and learning through close collaboration,” said YU Liang, President of Vanke. “Its fine architecture will undoubtedly transform the New York City skyline and redefine modern urban living. We are also excited to see Sir Norman Foster’s incredible vision take shape and become reality in the midst of such distinguished architectural neighbors.”
“It's a great endorsement of the entire team’s commitment to this project that we’ve finally found the opportunity to realize something we've all worked towards for several years,” said Aby Rosen, Co-Founder and Principal of RFR. “It’s rare to have the opportunity to create a tower of such elegant proportions, and rarer still to do so in such an architecturally rich section of Midtown Manhattan. The location of our site is extraordinary, and the demand for highest-end condominiums in Midtown has never been stronger. Our goal is to combine the finest residences with thoughtful, creative amenities that enhance Manhattan living.”
Foster + Partners’ design for 610 Lexington Avenue features a pure white façade with undulating glass, in a sleek, slim, simple shape that will stand the test of time. In shaping the design, Foster + Partners focused on the relationship between 610 Lexington Avenue and the Seagram Building, aiming to create an appropriate counterpoint to the classic office tower designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson, and owned by RFR.
“It’s not simply about our new building, but about the composition it creates together with one of the 20th century’s greatest. In contrast to Seagram’s dark bronze, our tower will have a pure white, undulating skin. Its proportions are almost impossibly slim and the views will be just incredible,” said Foster + Partners. “Simplicity of design is often the hardest thing to achieve but in a sophisticated marketplace, people appreciate the timeless beauty that comes from it. Our design philosophy has always extended through the entire building and we will look to create interiors that blend seamlessly with the exterior approach.”
Vanke is the largest and most respected residential developer in China. It sold more than 160 million square feet of residences in 2013, generating approximately $28 billion in revenue. Vanke has developed more than 500,000 homes across 70 major cities in China, Hong Kong, Singapore and US over the past three decades. As one of the earliest public companies in China, Vanke is known for its design and construction quality, commitment to sustainability, and leadership in corporate responsibility. It closed its first U.S. project in San Francisco with Tishman Speyer in 2013.
RFR is a fully integrated real estate investment firm based in New York City with a core focus on select urban markets in the United States and Germany. Founded by Aby Rosen and Michael Fuchs in the early 1990’s, the firm has been an active force in the New York City and German real estate market for much of the past two decades. RFR’s portfolio has grown to include more than 100 properties located in select domestic and international markets. While its property portfolio is anchored in the Manhattan and key German commercial markets, RFR also has significant commercial, residential, hotel, and retail holdings. RFR has a proven track record of adding significant value to the properties it acquires through property-level repositioning and strategic financial engineering. RFR has created an organization with deep experience in all phases of the property life cycle and is positioned to take advantage of market opportunities.
About Foster + Partners
Foster + Partners is one of the most innovative architecture and integrated design practices in the world. Over the past four decades the practice has pioneered a sustainable approach to architecture through a strikingly wide range of work, from urban masterplans, public infrastructure, airports, civic and cultural buildings, offices and workplaces to private houses and product design. Based in London, with offices worldwide, the practice has an international reputation, with buildings on six continents. Since its inception in 1967 it has received more than 620 awards for excellence and won over 1000 national and international competitions.
Hines is a privately owned real estate firm involved in real estate investment, development and property management worldwide. The firm’s historical and current portfolio of projects that are underway, completed acquired and managed for third parties includes 1,283 properties representing more than 516 million square feet of office, residential, mixed-use, industrial, hotel, medical and sports facilities, as well as large, master-planned communities and land developments. Currently, Hines manages 378 properties totaling 151.9 million square feet, which includes 84.3 million square feet for third parties. With offices in 111 cities in 18 countries, and controlled assets valued at approximately $25.2 billion, Hines is one of the largest real estate organizations in the world. Hines is also a world leader in sustainable real estate strategies, with extensive experience in LEED, ENERGY STAR, BREEAM, Haute Qualité Environnementale and DGNB green building rating systems.