Hotels spring up in unsold condos

December 15, 2008 at 12:54 am (88Greenwich, Buttonwood Real Estate, douche, Douche Of The Day, Douchebag Dormitory, Greenwich Club Residences, New York, Wall Street) (, , , , , , , , )

According to Crain’s New York (full article below),  there are possible illegal short term rentals in the Douchebag Dormitory AKA 88 Greenwich. Is the Andrew Heiberger, developer, responsible? No comment? Suspicious.

Hmm, that doesn’t explain the douchebag factor though.  Not all the douchebags are tourists or visiting businessmen.  Some actually own and live here full time.  Besides the douchebaggery of it all, there is also some downright stupidity, like this quote from an 88 Greenwich owner:

Condo owners are becoming suspicious. “You’ll see people in the lobby, eating breakfast, and they’re just not dressed like they’re going to work,” says one resident who lives at 88 Greenwich, where breakfast service is a prized amenity. The resident requested anonymity because the homeowners’ association is feuding with the building’s developers about this very issue. The building remains 20% unsold, according to its management office, which also insists that the building does not offer rentals.

No rentals? How about the National @ 88 Greenwich Street? Or Oakwood Worldwide?  Hell, you can even book on Expedia.  There is plenty reason to be suspicious that the building is being used as a hotel because of internet postings like the National and Oakwood, but “not dressed like they are going to work”?  LAME.   RE-TAARDED.  Not all of us are suits.  Nor do all of us work 9 to 5 jobs.   Don’t forget the trophy wives and the trustafarians.  Also, so people get dressed AFTER they eat breakfast.  So sorry neighbor, your 15 minutes of anonymous fame in a news article just make you sound like a ‘tard.   You need better evidence than that.  Like how about the people in suitcases being “checked-in” by the doorman when they arrive at the building.  Now you are building a case here.  But “just not dressed like they’re going to work” makes you sound like a dipshit.

I can wait until this shit hits the fan.

Hotels spring up in unsold condos

By Hilary Potkewitz

Published: December 14, 2008 – 5:59 am

With tourism on the wane, posh hotels like the Plaza are grappling with fewer bookings. They’re also facing competition from an unlikely source: Manhattan landlords.

Building owners have long dabbled in the hospitality industry, illegally renting out empty units in their properties on a short-term or nightly basis. But in a new twist, the clandestine hotels are popping up in luxury apartment buildings in the financial district, where developers have struggled to sell all their units.

“We get a steady stream of complaints from around Manhattan,” says Shari Hyman, director of the mayor’s office of special enforcement, which is charged with rooting out illegal hotels. “But the problem of places downtown and in the Wall Street area has been coming to our attention recently.”

These illegal hotels tend to appear in older, rent-stabilized buildings and tenements, in midtown or the Upper East and Upper West sides. By comparison, the newest crop of accommodations offer quite an upgrade.

The downtown building boom led to a glut of luxury condo developments in former office buildings near Wall Street. As several of these high-rises remain unfilled, developers and landlords are making “other arrangements” to squeeze a return out of their investment.

Offering these vacant units as short-term “corporate housing,” which falls into a gray area of the law, they’ve found willing occupants in the influx of visiting professionals dealing with the unraveling of Wall Street, as well as tourists looking for deals.

A quick search of sites such as, or Craigslist reveals a host of short-term rental options in fancy downtown buildings such as 88 Greenwich St. and the Ocean Building—decidedly not the one-night-stand type.

Lots of extras

“Building amenities include full concierge service, library, deluxe sundeck, party room, billiards room and a full fitness center with complimentary yoga,” reads travel site’s description of 88 Greenwich. Calls to the building’s developer, Buttonwood Real Estate President Andrew Heiberger, were not returned.

Craigslist postings offer rates ranging from $175 to $250 or more per night in the Ocean Building, a luxury residence at 1 West St. The management office of building owner Moinian Group confirms that both leasing agents for the Ocean Building and individual owners post on Craigslist for short-term rentals.

Meanwhile, two-bedroom units for sale in these buildings were recently listed in the $1.6 million to $1.7 million range.

Throughout the city, complaints about landlords operating illegal hotels rose sharply in 2008, according to data recently released by the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement. City authorities have raided 55 suspected establishments so far this year, issuing 310 violations—a 17% increase over last year, when they conducted 32 surprise inspections.

Condo owners are becoming suspicious. “You’ll see people in the lobby, eating breakfast, and they’re just not dressed like they’re going to work,” says one resident who lives at 88 Greenwich, where breakfast service is a prized amenity. The resident requested anonymity because the homeowners’ association is feuding with the building’s developers about this very issue. The building remains 20% unsold, according to its management office, which also insists that the building does not offer rentals.

The remaining units may not be sold for some time. Downtown condos have become even harder to sell recently, as prices in more desirable areas of the city drop, says real estate agent Avi Bellucha, an owner of a Manhattan Connection franchise.

“The major appeal of the financial district was getting into a luxury apartment building for less money,” Mr. Bellucha says. “Why would you move there now, when for the same amount you can get a great apartment in a proper neighborhood?”

The financial district is only the latest addition to the illegal hotel circuit. The rest of the city has been grappling with the issue for years.

State Sen. Liz Krueger, who once counted nearly 200 illegal hotels in her midtown district, recently proposed legislation to increase the penalties for hospitality hustling. The current fine is just $800 per building. “It’s a huge problem and can be scary for a lot of people,” says Ms. Krueger. “You like to think you know your neighbors.”

Adapting grudgingly

Residents in those buildings have learned to adapt to revolving neighbors, though grudgingly.

Murray Hill resident Jeremy Redleaf, a 24-year old voice-over producer, describes himself and his roommates as the only “real tenants” in their East Side apartment building. The other apartments play host to a diverse cast of characters, ranging from diplomats to attachés, actors to escorts.

“You hear lots of shuffling and moving furniture at weird times,” says Mr. Redleaf. “They’re in and out so fast, there’s no point in really getting to know the people.”


Illegal hotel locations inspected
Total violations issued 257

2008 (through Oct. 31)
Illegal hotel locations inspected
Total violations issued 310

Source: Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement


Permalink Leave a Comment

Response to Opinion of 88 Greenwich AKA the Douchebag Dormitory

September 30, 2008 at 11:23 pm (88Greenwich, Buttonwood Real Estate, douche, Douche Of The Day, Douchebag Dormitory, Greenwich Club Residences, New York, Wall Street) (, , , , , )

I found this review of the Douchebag Dormitory AKA 88 Greenwich Street AKA Greenwich Club Residences today:

Lots of potential, mediocre execution
From: -Anonymous-
Date posted: 9/6/2008
Years at this apartment: 2008 – 2008

I recently moved into a large 1 bedroom unit at 88 Greenwich, and I have some reservations about the decision.

At first blush, the building seemed like exactly what I wanted; a condo building with good amenities and top quality furnishings. And while the building amenities are indeed very impressive (the common areas are beautiful and the staff is very friendly), and the apartments have Viking/Subzero appliances, there are some things that bring the experience down for me.

For one thing, I’ve discovered that while this building is indeed a condo development, most of the units are studios or small one bedrooms, which are used as rentals. This inevitably attracts a set of people which are not what you’d expect from an upscale building (college kids, first year i-bank associates, frat boys doing shares), and this hurts the image greatly. There are also a few apartments used as model dorms, and while that provides great eye candy on occasion, the girls are usually loud and obnoxious european children with little or no consideration for the other residents.

On the weekend evenings, the harbor room (main common area) is usually packed with immature fratty kids drinking cans of PBR and being generally obnoxious. Not the upscale scene described by the real estate people.

There also seems to be an inordinate number of europeans in general, which is fine, except they all seem to absolutely refuse to speak english in the common areas. It is beyond rude and extremely antisocial.

Overall, I’m happy with my apartment, but wish the building was not populated as it seems to be. Unfortunately, it seems to be in danger of becoming a more upscale 2 Gold Street, which should be something that the owners and management company should be very, very concerned about.

The stereotyping of all “college kids, first year i-bank associates, frat boys doing shares” is too simplistic, although most certainly true in most cases.  I’ve also encountered some bitchy passive aggressive trophy wives, their douchey Wall Street middle management husbands, and “the stroller mafia” of young parents who let their kids loose in common areas and park their strollers filled with their crying Aryan spawn in the middle of common area hallways, so don’t just blame the kids!

If you care that much about an exclusive high end atmosphere, perhaps some posh co-op would have suited you better.  Or move to a gated community in the the fucking suburbs and buy a gun.

And what’s the reviewer’s thing against Europeans?  Why should people not speak their own language if they aren’t talking to YOU?  Stupid ignorant American, why don’t you go learn another language.  I suggest Chinese, since they own your asses already.  Or how about Spanish?  That way you can beg for mercy when America’s Hispanic working class revolts and has your white ass against the wall.  That will be the true Reconquista of AmeriKKKa.

Can’t wait for the upcoming economic apocalypse. Maybe that will cut down on the Wall Street douchebaggery in NY and signal the return of knife-wielding tranning hookers to cut yo’ faces.

Permalink Leave a Comment

88 Greenwich Update

August 14, 2008 at 8:17 am (88Greenwich, Buttonwood Real Estate, Commentary, douche, Douche Of The Day, Douchebag Dormitory, Food, Greenwich Club Residences, New York, Wall Street) (, , )

Douchebag Dormitory revealed.

This morning at the continental breakfast buffet at the Douchebag Dormitory, a rich white bitch, with her Aryan spawn and Asian domestic in tow decided to make conversation with “the help,” a Latina women who sets up the breakfast.

Rich Bitch: Where is your “hee-hoe?” (hijo)

The Help: Oh, my son? He is at my home.

Rich Bitch: Ok, oh, so he is at home.  Great.

Moral of this story:  Don’t butcher other people’s language.  Especially when they speak perfectly good English.  Otherwise, you sound like Peggy Hill from King of the Hill speaking Texican.  I bet this bitch is the kind of whitey that “namastes” her Tibetan nanny, and honors “oriental” culture by using chopsticks, eating sushi, loving Pad Thai, and practicing yoga too.  Lay off biatch.  Don’t steal other people’s culture and appropriate it badly.

Permalink 1 Comment

Welcome to the Douchebag Dormitory

April 17, 2008 at 9:22 pm (Douchebag Dormitory, New York, Wall Street) (, , , , , )

In the wind-swept corridors of lower Manhattan, there is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to all decent peoples, as vast as space, as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between the FDR and West Side Highway, between boundless irrationality and the sobriety of fundamental analysis, and it lies in the pregnant gap between man’s failures and the summit of his trading success.

It is an area which we call the Douchebag Dormitory, home to an eclectic band of derivative analysts, ivy-league underachievers, and desperate socio-educational climbers. This is a place of congress for society’s outcast, a gilded wonderland of floor lights, lazy doormen, and institutionally-controlled ambience music.

The lights are much brighter there; you can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares, so go DOWNTOWN: where all the lights are bright, DOWNTOWN: waiting for you tonight, DOWNTOWN: you’re gonna be alright, now.

Just take the 1 to Rector, but ignore those sinister directives about being in the first five cars. Surface at great risk to your innocence and you will see The Four Corners of American indulgence, featuring the confluence of carnal lust (Pussycat Lounge…”what’s new?”), gluttony (dios mio!), consumerism (“An informed consumer is our best customer”) and, to top it all off, the towering monument to Wall Street bravado that is The Dorm.

Permalink Leave a Comment