Real Estate

Industry Overview

Certain industry trends are emerging from the coronavirus pandemic. In terms of commercial real estate, fewer people are going to the office, and more companies are embracing working from home, which is leading to an increase in available space. Additionally, many retailers, restaurants, and entertainment venues are struggling and will close. In terms of residential real estate, a trend is emerging for people to move away from urban areas.

How We Can Help

The Togut Firm has particular expertise in real estate reorganizations, having represented Rockefeller Center, the Olympia & York World Financial Center, the Lehman Trust’s Canyon Ranch apartment complex in Miami, Ian Schrager’s The Clift hotel in San Francisco, and many other real estate debtors, as well as the Chapter 11 trustee for The Williamsburg Hotel. We also have done significant work in buying and selling real estate in bankruptcy estates. Attorney Albert Togut has served as a bankruptcy trustee in many real estate cases.

Our familiarity with the demands of complex reorganizations and our commitment to containing legal costs make our firm especially well-suited for representing struggling companies through difficult times. Keeping our billing rates 25% below market, our firm represents companies that are considering whether to pursue a restructuring, including in or out of Chapter 11. Because we have no retainer clients or institutional relationships, our law firm can act independently in the interests of the debtor and the estate without the conflicts or complications presented by preexisting affiliations with lenders or parties in interest.

Relevant Experience

The Togut Firm has achieved outstanding results in several real estate restructurings by providing independent, creative, and efficient client service. Our relevant experience in this area includes:

96 Wythe Acquisition LLC (The Williamsburg Hotel)

Counsel to Stephen S. Gray, as court-appointed chapter 11 trustee for the debtor, the owner of the upscale Williamsburg Hotel. With the Togut Firm’s assistance, the trustee obtained approval for, and closed the sale of, the hotel under a confirmed chapter 11 plan of liquidation in April 2023. Among other things, the Togut Firm assisted the trustee and his other professionals in negotiating settlements with the debtor’s secured lender and other key parties, obtaining approval of the sale and confirmation of the plan, assisting with maintaining ongoing day to day operations, and investigating and pursuing claims and causes of action against the debtor’s insiders and other third parties.

Zuca Properties

Main counsel to Zuca Properties LLC, an owner of certain penthouse condominiums in Manhattan. The debtor is using the bankruptcy process to market for sale its condo units and consummate a chapter 11 plan of reorganization that is backstopped by a bid from its secured lender which has agreed to acquire the condos if no buyer is identified.

Rockefeller Center Properties

Counsel to the debtors, owners of Rockefeller Center, in the restructuring of $1 billion worth of mortgage and other indebtedness involving 12 historic landmark buildings in the heart of Manhattan.

Olympia & York Financial World Center

Counsel to Olympia & York Tower B Company in its Chapter 11 case involving the restructuring of more than $1 billion in debt, as part of the global restructuring of the Canadian-based conglomerate that was, at the time, considered to be the world’s largest real estate development company. The remaining affiliated debtors, with limited exceptions, were represented by Weil, Gotshal & Manges in their Chapter 11 cases.

Canyon Ranch Hotel

Counsel to the debtors, an affiliate of Lehman Brothers and owners and operators of a Miami Beach hotel lot, including a luxury spa and retail space, which were sold at auction in an amount far exceeding the initial stalking horse bid.

Schrager's Clift Hotel

Counsel to the debtors, owners of a historic hotel in San Francisco’s theater district that successfully reorganized over $50 million worth of debt.

We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code.