Bloomberg News

Tribeca to Turn Boston Garage Into Chanel Store, Apartments

March 29, 2012

Tribeca Holdings London Ltd., managed by Irish investor Aidan Brooks, is turning a Boston parking garage into a store for French luxury-goods retailer Chanel SA and six homes.

A three-story shop with six condominiums above is being built at 4-6 Newbury Street in the center of the city’s affluent Back Bay neighborhood, according to the Boston Redevelopment Authority’s website. Tribeca confirmed it owns the building in an e-mail and declined to say what it plans to do with the property. Iana dos Reis Nunes, a spokeswoman for Chanel, couldn’t immediately confirm it’s leasing the space.

Retailers in the Back Bay’s shopping district include Hermes International (RMS) SA, Burberry Group Plc (BRBY) and Cie. Financiere Richemont SA’s Cartier. Boston retail rents are forecast to rise by 4.2 percent this year, the most in five years, and sales of retail property in the city more than doubled last year to $1.1 billion, according to broker Cushman & Wakefield Inc., citing Property & Portfolio Research Inc.

The development will cost London-based Tribeca as much as $50 million including the garage’s purchase price, a person with knowledge of the transaction said. The person declined to be identified because the information is private.

Tribeca filed a certificate of lease to Chanel Inc. in April 2011 and a Brookline Bancorp Inc. unit gave a $15 million mortgage to a unit of the U.K. company, Tribeca Newbury Street Owner LLC, in December, Suffolk County records show.

Back Bay Rents

Rents on Newbury Street rose 4 percent in the 12 months through June 2011 to about $130 a square foot a year, Cushman & Wakefield said in a report. That compares with $2,250 a square foot on New York’s 5th Avenue, the world’s most expensive retail location.

Tribeca bought shops on London’s Bond Street leased to Cartier and Swiss watchmaker Hublot for 30.7 million pounds ($49 million) last year. Brooks has invested with Irish businessman J.P. McManus in properties including the Rhinelander Mansion in New York, which is leased to Ralph Lauren Corp., and at Rodeo Drive in Los Angeles, according to the Irish Times.

The Back Bay, famous for its Victorian homes and landmarks such as the John Hancock Tower and Copley Square, is home to some of Boston’s best restaurants, hotels, shopping and nightlife, according to website of the Back Bay Association, which represents local businesses and organizations.

To contact the reporter on this story: Neil Callanan in London at ncallanan@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Blackman at ablackman@bloomberg.net.


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