The city’s real estate elite mostly cheered REBNY’s hipped-up, spiced-up annual gala, which made a splash above the Hudson River.
The gathering dubbed “New York Forever: A Celebration of Our City” was REBNY’s first such gathering since 2019. The event honored TF Cornerstone’s Tom Elghanayan, Fetner Properties’ Hal Fetner, CBRE’s Darcy Stacom, Douglaston Development’s Jeff Levine and the Gotham Organization’s David Picket, among others.
Attendees paying $1,400 a ticket mingled and nibbled on small plates served up by chefs such as Daniel Boulud, Michael Lomonaco and J.J. Johnson. The edibles and the come-as-you-are dress code were a far cry from the stuffy mid-winter black-tie affairs at the New York Hilton.
So was the setting on the sixth floor of Glasshouse, which has large windows and an open outdoor deck — that guests had to flee when a brief rain spritz popped up.
Guests included executive committee members Douglas Durst, CBRE’s Mary Ann Tighe, JLL’s Bob Knakal, Cushman & Wakefield’s Bruce Mosler, SL Green’s Laura Johnson and Boston Property’s Hilary Spann. We also spotted Branton Realty’s Woody Heller, Cushman’s Joanne Podell, and RXR Realty’s Scott Rechler and Frank Pusinelli, and the Rent Stabilization Association’s Frank P. Ricci.
Boulud, who supervised menu offerings including citrus-marinated shrimp and sweet corn veloute from his Le Pavillon, mingled with happy guests in his chef’s whites.
It wasn’t all about food and fun. My colleague Lois Weiss reports that Gov. Kathy Hochul met privately with REBNY officials to discuss conversion of old office buildings to housing and the cancellation of the 421a tax abatement program.
MTA chairman Janno Lieber talked up his agency’s role in facilitating construction of JP Morgan Chase’s 270 Park Ave. and Boston Properties’ 347 Madison Ave., where supporting columns need to be snaked around tracks that run below.
Eric Adams’ chief advisor Ingrid Lewis-Martin came in the mayor’s stead because Adams had to deal with the case of a police officer who was shot earlier that day.
Although the event was filled with laughter and optimism, a few guests complained that the roam-the-floor format made it hard to enjoy the dishes. “There was no place to put dishes down except for some tiny table stands,” said one. “For $1,400 a ticket I want a place to sit down.”