Upstairs is the new ground floor. Apart from saving on rent, the upper floors offer another advantage: the view. In the not-too-distant future, cities will become more vertical, like Hong Kong and Tokyo, where you often get in an elevator to get to a restaurant. Bloomberg explores how New York restaurants are taking a page from the Tokyo playbook.
When the 16 or so restaurants and food concepts open at the hugely anticipated Hudson Yards mega complex on Manhattan’s way West Side in 2018, none will be located on the ground floor.
That’s a purposeful move by Related Companies, the developer behind Hudson Yards, and one it has made before. Its previous projects include the Time Warner Center, which put two of New York’s more expensive dining rooms—Per Se and Masa—up on the 4th floor of the 2.8 million-square-foot complex.
“It’s how we’re getting people back into brick-and-mortar spaces,” says Kenneth Himmel, Related Urban’s president, about putting restaurants above the stores in Time Warner and now Hudson Yards. Anyway, he adds, “Ground floor real estate is so expensive. It’s hard for most restaurants to sustain that rent.” People will go upstairs, especially if they can see the dining areas, he maintains. “You just have to make sure there’s enough action and energy on the ground floor.” (Himmel told WWD that the projected rents on the first level would be at least double, if not triple, the rents on higher floors.)
Find out more about this latest trend here.