Saturday, December 15, 2007

News: 315 Park Avenue South

BCN Development, an award-winning, leading developer of high-end, mixed-use, luxury properties, announced today that it has secured lease commitments from Leucadia National Corporation (Ticker: LUK) for over 32,000 square feet of office space through 2017 at its New York City flagship property, 315 Park Avenue South. The deal is valued close to $25,000,000.

Craig Nassi, CEO of BCN Development, welcomed the news. “It is a pleasure to be able to continue our relationship with one of New York City’s fastest-growing companies,” Mr. Nassi said, citing an article from the November 19, 2007 issue of Crain’s New York Business that ranked Leucadia National Corporation at number 14, on the strength of a 2006 net income of $186 million on revenue of $827.8 million and a share price appreciation of +119.1%. “I am delighted that Leucadia recognizes the desirability of 315 Park Avenue South as the location to continue to grow their business.”

The 340,000-sf 315 Park Ave. is also headquarters to Credit Suisse. The property has a just renovated 50-year-old lobby with a $1-million detailed finish.

315 Park Avenue South

315 Park Avenue South

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Dear Friends and Family,

"In charity there is no excess" ~ Sir Frances Bacon.

This is a motto by which I have chosen to live my life. It is with this in mind, that I have registered to run the New York City marathon for charity. The charity that spoke to me most is Team Continuum. Team Continuum is a non-profit organization dedicated to taking immediate care of anyone involved in fighting cancer. They give cancer patients access to the everyday cure. They fill in the physical and emotional gaps of support so cancer patients can have the strength to focus on their treatment. Currently, Team Continuum has raised and distributed more than $3.5 m.
We have all known people, near and far, who have suffered from cancer. We have all been personally affected in one way or another by cancer. We have seen the emotional toll cancer takes on the patient, friends and families. I believe cancer is the most serious illness facing us today; it does not discriminate and it does not relent.
Please sponsor me by donating to this amazing nonprofit. Donations are tax deductible and can be made on my page. Every dollar goes a long way in making a difference in someone’s life.
Thank you for your support,
Craig Nassi

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Bcn development purchases 315 park ave. south a 330,000 s/f building for $265 million

MANHATTAN, NY: In March, Craig Nassi’s firm BCN Development completed
plans to make its first entrance into Manhattan, agreeing to purchase 315 Park Ave. South, a 21-story, 330,000 s/f office building located in midtown located at the south east corner of 24th St. and Park Ave. South. The purchase was an off-market transaction, where BCN was represented by Venture Capital Properties LLC’s threesome Ebi Khalili and Josh & Joseph Rahmani and Vladimir Kovalenko of Continental Realty from the partnership representing the seller. The purchase price was $265 million.

Whole article, PDF

Friday, June 15, 2007

CPN Magazine: Park Avenue Buy Closed, BCN Eyes More Manhattan Office Property

Now that his firm's acquisition of 315 Park Avenue South has officially closed, BCN Development CEO Craig Nassi says that his firm is planning to further expand its holdings in the thriving Manhattan office market.

"The New York City office market is absolutely phenomenal," Nassi told CPN this morning. "It's better than anywhere in the country, and we're looking for the best markets to be in."

In March, Nassi's Denver-based firm announced plans to make its first major foray into Manhattan, agreeing to purchase 315 Park Avenue South--a 21-story, 333,000-square-foot office building (pictured) located in Midtown--in an off-market transaction, for a purchase price reportedly somewhere north of $265 million. Credit Suisse First Boston is the property's major tenant, occupying some 82 percent of the building's space, and Nassi identified the banking firm's tenancy as a major asset, characterizing Credit Suisse's lease as "good as gold."

With the purchase of 315 Park now closed, BCN will now turn its attention to making other investments in Manhattan. The firm currently has four other Gotham properties under contract for acquisition. "There's such a tightness in the market right now that any good square footage in good buildings is absorbed as soon as it's put on the market," Nassi said. "So that makes for very profitable office product."

And with little space available for new construction, Nassi said he expects the value of existing office stock to continue to climb. "Under our calculations, we expect to see a 12 to 15 percent annual rise in rents in Midtown," he noted, adding that BCN was looking to acquire space all over the borough, not just in that submarket. "We're looking for office deals throughout Manhattan. One of the deals we have under contract is for approximately 1 million square feet of office near Wall Street," he said, noting that as the Midtown market continues to tighten, tenants will increasingly be pushed to look for space in other Manhattan submarkets.

By Adam Perrotta, CPN News Writer (link)

Thursday, March 15, 2007

BCN Development Buys 315 Park Ave.

NEW YORK CITY-Denver-based BCN Development has purchased 315 Park Ave. South in an off-market transaction. An undisclosed partnership quietly put the 333,000-sf Midtown building on the market and was being heavily pursued by a number of companies, according to sources.

Credit Suisse First Boston is the building’s major tenant, holding a long-term lease on about 82% of the fully occupied building. The building's location and quality tenant was what attracted BCN to the property, according to CEO Craig Nassi. “[It] may be the best tenant in the city,” he tells

The 21-story building sold as a cap rate in the 5% range, according to Nassi. He declined to name the purchase price since the deal has not yet closed. It is expect to close in the next two weeks.

In December, Vornado purchased 350 Park Ave. for $542 million, as reported by Although that 538,000-sf class A office building is located about 30 blocks from BCN’s newest acquisition. In January, 2 Park Ave. sold for $519 million. The one-million-sf building is located 10 blocks from 315 Park Ave. South and was purchased by Morgan Stanley Real Estate’s Prime Property Fund.

Additionally, BCN is looking to acquire another two million sf of office, retail, hotel and residential, developments or conversions. Nassi tells that his firm currently has 865,000 sf under contract in the city that should close in the next 30 to 60 days.

Article by Katie Hinderer of

Friday, March 02, 2007

Craig Nassi - Getting it right by P. Reston Manfredi

In Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead, Howard Roarke, a brilliant architect, watches as developers destroy his outstanding design by adding balconies. He also falls victim to a bunch of media hacks and critics who go on a verbal rampage to destroy him. So he blows up his own building in protest.

Craig Nassi, a dynamic, young developer, picked Daniel Libeskind to design the Aura in Sacramento, California, his most daring and forward-looking project to date. It’s a mixed-use condominium tower that revivifies the state capital. Libeskind—his was the inspired design for the Freedom Tower to replace the World Trade Center—knows the Roarke feeling and has no such qualms when working on his new project for Nassi. An unusually sophisticated yet simple design, sheer elegance is a good way to describe it.

Nassi’s Denver-based company, BCN Development, with a combined real estate portfolio valued at more than $500 million, is enjoying its bar mitzvah year by celebrating Libeskind’s Aura. Rising over 400 feet above the city center, it is 38 stories of luxurious residences that will have state-of-the-art technology and cutting-edge contemporary style. The Aura’s 265 apartments range in price from $386,000 to $1.3 million. The exterior of the building is a bluish-gray glass that covers 100% of the skin. Every home will have glass railed terraces with panoramic views of the wide sky and the horizons of Sacramento. Libeskind calls it “a sculpture that changes with light and the season.”
The stunning illustrations feature a building with trademark Libeskind twists—those textured surfaces that cause you to pause and try to figure out exactly how his buildings make their statements. From the hand-rendered illustrations, it is difficult to figure out how the building can be so translucent, yet so three-dimensional. And then you realize, it’s all about the balconies.

Nassi, a native Brooklynite, is in New York to present the project to a number of high-powered potential investors. He doesn’t pick a conference room or some mundane and tired place, instead, he picks New York’s newest hot spot, Buddakan—the most talked about restaurant in town. Tucked into the old Nabisco factory on 9th Avenue, it has cachet and grace, and the setting suits the developer and project perfectly.

In the faux library, its four walls lined in beige leather tooled with gold leaf and a hint of Chinese red—lines, square edges and clean lights, softened by the sensuous flow of Chinese grand graphics on the concrete wall—Nassi presents the Aura to New York.

When Nassi appears in the library with a PR posse, it is difficult to know what to expect, but almost instantly you realize he is not one of those all-about-me types. He was raised by his single mom, the Israeli-born daughter of a Polish father who just barely escaped the Holocaust in 1938. The rest of the family was wiped out.

When Nassi, 37, was 12, his mother remarried and the new family moved to Denver, where he attended high school, Colorado State University, and graduate school at the University of Northern Colorado, earning his masters degree in education. He always wanted to be a schoolteacher and taught social studies and coached football and basketball for three years in the Cherry Creek school system. Annual salary: $28,000 for a 75-hour week.

Becoming a schoolteacher shows character that most people don’t have. But as a career choice for an ambitious young man, it seemed hardly practical. Why did he make that decision?
“People who are motivated and inspired by teachers want to be teachers. In high school I had a few good teachers and coaches in football and track. I thought they were very noble people, working for $30,000 a year, to dedicate their lives to kids. It’s not a job where you come in at 10 and leave at 5. It’s a full-time job. But, for me, who went in every year wanting to make a difference and found myself rewriting and rearranging lesson plans from the year before, it became boring and was no longer a challenge. “When that final June rolled around, I couldn’t do it for another year and quit. I had no job, my mom said I was crazy, but she understood. Then friends suggested I get a real estate license, which introduced me to the field.“I sold for a couple of months and didn’t like that, so I got into construction and became a general contractor. I learned the sticks and bricks side of the business, building away.”He laughs when asked if he built one-family suburban Spanish villas and ranches. “Yes that kind of stuff. You get to understand that it really is all about the sheetrock and the taping, about the tiny details. That’s the essence of this business. If you don’t have a feel for that, you shouldn’t be in it because you will never figure out how to get things done under budget. It’s part of the art of this business.
“Donald Trump is very successful because he worked and lived with his father, a general contractor who understood you can use this screw for half a penny, or this screw for three quarters of a penny, and you will be using 2,000,000 screws over the next six months—so think about it. You have to know value. You can’t just jump into this at the top end and think you’re going to make it work. When we designed this building, we had to make sure it worked because if it didn’t, we wouldn’t build it.”
His first year in the business he made $200,000. “I realized that teaching is like slave labor, and because it is there is something drastically wrong with society. For me now, all of a sudden I was enjoying my life.”
When he was 25, he also went into the antiques business in Denver at Metropolitan Antiques Gallery. “I’ve always had a love of geography and history and art,” he told one local reporter in Denver, and often travels the world looking for the right object d’art to make the correct statement. “I just had an idea of mixing antiques with development.” He once bought an antique 20-foot-tall embassy gate in Argentina that he used in one of his projects.
His tastes, while eclectic, tend toward the European. It might be because of his Polish genes. When told that there were more than a few Polish Holocaust survivors who were real estate developers that started out as he did, Nassi laughed.
“Maybe that’s why I have an admiration for Daniel so much—for his Polish background. He was one of the first Jewish babies born in Poland after the Holocaust. He’s a wonderful guy and it was fun going from single-family homes to building this kind of building and working with someone incredibly exciting and talented like him.”
The feelings are mutual, says Libeskind. “It’s a pleasure to be working with someone who has Craig’s great vision, who saw something beyond square footage in the center of such a beautiful city. He wanted to contribute something architecturally. The structure is iconic, and it celebrates the city, giving the residents an art experience that will lift living into something that goes beyond the functional.”

Nassi grew up in the Denver Jewish community of 50,000. He was bar mitzvahed in Israel, is a strong contributor to the Jewish National Fund, and goes to Israel at least once or twice a year. Though not observant, he’s a proud cultural Jew and not ashamed to be the first to say so, especially if challenged.
As part of his social involvement, Nassi sits on the board of a number of organizations and social agencies that are part of his local community and seeks to help make it a better place for everyone to live in. Beyond that, he has come upon an idea he’d like to pursue, if the government can be convinced to come on board.
As a former teacher, he feels that society has an excellent opportunity to restructure the way we parent our children. There’s a 30% high school dropout rate in America, and increasingly, children across the board are less educated and caring than they used to be.
“It’s not really the schools,” he says. “It’s the parents who don’t know how to parent. When you have 20 or even 40 kids in a class and some get straight As and go to Harvard and others get to the 11th grade and drop out to sell and do drugs and hang out in nightclubs—for those who succeed it’s almost always because of the parents. It’s one of the reasons I think Judaism is such a successful culture, in that it is central in holding family together. You keep a family by spending time, loving each other, talking with each other, doing things together, following tradition. It’s not your fifth-grade teacher who yelled at you or PS 197, where they didn’t have enough books for everyone in the classroom.
“So my idea would be to offer every pregnant woman who wants the local hospital to pay for her delivery to take a four-month course in parenting (with the father, if possible), pass some tests, and take it seriously. I think that would be a great national program and that we should convince our government to do it. It would benefit everyone and make a huge difference to our children.”
The conversation is interrupted. The PR posse tells him it’s time to present the Aura to the crowd that has gathered. Daniel Libeskind says a few words, exchange greetings, scope each other out, and check out the meticulously built model.
Without ever referring to The Fountainhead, Nassi and Libeskind are told, “No one is blowing this one up.” And Nassi immediately replies, “Hats off to Daniel for the balconies.”
They both got it right.

Monday, February 05, 2007

About BCN Development Owner Craig Nassi

Here's a little background about BCN Owner Craig Nassi

After graduating from CSU, Colorado, Craig Nassi went on to fulfill his lifelong dream to teach and coach youth in the public schools. He pursued his educational career for four years, while getting his Masters from UNC, Colorado. After departing from teaching he set out to challenge himself in the fast paced world of commercial real estate. Immediately leaving the classroom in 1994, he entered another one, but this time as a student. He enrolled in real estate college to gain the needed credentials for the real estate world. He achieved his real estate license and began working with a local agency. His duties were buying, selling, financing and repositioning assets.

It was a dramatic change from his previous career, but with his passion for architecture and construction Mr. Nassi caught on quickly. He immediately mastered the business and ventured into the field and began constructing single family homes. He completed a handful of homes in his first year in business, then entered into the grand world of multi-family dwellings and the commercial developments.

Quickly building and attracting a brilliant team of experienced individuals, Mr. Nassi's created BCN Development. With this ambitious group of seasoned professionals BCN set their goals on filling the void for luxury high rise living in downtown of Denver. The rest is history, by 2001-2002 he was voted by his peers as "Ernest and Young, Best Developer" for his first completed high rise, The Belvedere Tower. This asset also won the prize for development of the year.

Since then Mr. Nassi has expanded to both the east and west coasts to develop and acquire prize properties.

Today, the headquarters for BCN Development is located in New York City, Craig's home town and birth place. Here you will find him daily, working hands-on with his team to create their future developments and award winning unique structures.

Currently, Craig Nassi is also a part time professor at NYU Graduate School of Real Estate, and serves on several philanthropic boards, such as the Jewish National Fund. In his spare time Mr. Nassi is an avid runner, competitor in multiple marathons and triathlons a year, as well as enjoys skiing, spinning and yoga.