Hartz Buys Wyndham Garden Newark Airport Hotel for $34M

Leonard Stern with Wyndham Garden Hotel Newark Airport (Getty, Hotels Combined)

Hartz Mountain Industries just acquired a Newark Liberty International Airport hotel, but has no plans to add the structure to its portfolio.

Leonard Stern’s company bought the Wyndham Garden Newark Airport hotel for $34 million with plans to tear down the building, The Real Deal has learned. Demolition could begin as soon as early next year.

Marcus & Millichap’s Eric Anton represented Hartz and the seller, a private California-based investor, in the transaction. Anton declined to comment, and Hartz did not respond to an inquiry.

Eric M. Anton ( Marcus & Millichap)

Hartz valued the hotel’s parking lot and could eventually turn the property into a warehouse, a source told TRD.

The Secaucus-based real estate investment firm owns a neighboring property along International Way, where it plans an 800-key hotel and 30,000-square-foot conference center across from the airport. The development would include more than 2,500 parking spaces and could add retail and dining in the future. The plans date back to Hartz’s purchase of the property in 1988, the New York Times reported.

Hartz also owns a neighboring 56,000-square-foot warehouse along International Way.

The transaction reflects trends in commercial real estate. While the hotel industry has struggled to recover from the pandemic, the industrial market got stronger. Warehouse vacancy remains extremely low and demand for logistics space continues to outpace supply. The industrial market turned white-hot during the pandemic as many companies expanded their e-commerce operations to account for more consumers shopping online.

Hartz, which has been an active dealmaker and developer in the tri-state region since the 1960s, has expanded its industrial holdings in recent years.

The company is developing a pair of warehouses at the former Newsday site in Melville, Long Island. Hartz purchased the 48.5-acre site in 2018 for $54.5 million and broke ground there last year. Amazon inked a 10-year lease in February for a planned 246,000-square-foot warehouse on the site. The other warehouse is expected to span 600,000 square feet.

Suffolk County’s Industrial Development Agency last year postponed the approval of tax breaks for the project because of backlash involving the 600,000 square-foot warehouse being planned. Critics claimed Hartz was using out-of-state contractors for the project.

Meanwhile, Hartz has recently reduced its New Jersey office holdings. The firm sold an 11-story, 136,000 square-foot waterfront office building in Jersey City for $48 million in March and a 617,000-square-foot office structure in Weehawken for $219 million in December.

Contact Pat Ralph

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