May 24th, 2021 | Updated on February 18th, 2022
Many people and companies go to New York City full of ambitions and dreams for the future, but only a few make it in the Big Apple, and Bayrock Group is one of them.
The luxury real estate development company was founded in New York City in 2001 with dreams of doing large-scale, prominent real estate projects in and around the city.
To begin with and to get its name out there, Bayrock Group was in charge of small and medium-sized projects such as the renovation of Loehmann’s Seaport Plaza, a mall in the Sheepshead area of Brooklyn, New York.
After successfully completing several more projects of that size, Bayrock Group upped its aspirations.
The real estate development firm moved its offices to the Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue, New York City, where Bayrock Group also laid out a new plan for the future.
The company wanted to be part of bigger and more prestigious projects.
Bayrock Group Catches The Big Fish
The relocation turned out to be exactly what Bayrock Group needed to achieve its new goal, as the firm established relations with the building’s most famous tenant, the Trump Organization.
The Trump Organization had dealt with real estate development for almost a century, so it was a big catch for the Bayrock Group.
The organization was founded by Fred and Elizabeth Trump, Donald Trump’s father and grandmother, in 1923, and in 1971, Donald Trump the former American president was tasked with managing it.
Four years ago, the management of the organization was taken over by Donald Trump’s kids.
Bayrock Group and the Trump Organization shared a passion for luxury real estate development, so they decided to form a partnership in a new project on Spring Street in the SoHo area of New York City.
Bayrock Rock was already working on the project with the Sapir Organization, but Bayrock Group wanted to leverage the famous Trump brand.
As a result, Bayrock Group, the Sapir Organization and the Trump Organization made a deal that would leave the latter with a 18% equity in the building in exchange for using the Trump name in the construction’s title.
Only The Best For Trump SoHo
The agreement resulted in Trump SoHo; a condo-hotel that opened in 2008.
Apart from hotel rooms and apartments, the impressive building featured an outdoor pool, a spa, banquet halls, event halls and top class restaurants as well as bars.
To top it all off, all 46 floors of Trump SoHo had floor-to-ceiling windows, enabling residents and guests to catch an unprecedented view of New York City.
Bayrock Group tasked Handel Architects with designing the building itself, while Rockwell Group was responsible for the interior design.
Handel Architects is, among other projects, known for designing the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Washington, D.C. and the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York City.
Rockwell Group has designed a wide array of buildings throughout the years. Among them are the Taj Mahal Palace and & Tower Hotel in Mumbai, the Equinox Hotel in New York City and the Bleau Bar in Miami.
Rockwell Group, brought designer items by the Italian brand Fendi Casa into Trump SoHo.
Bayrock Group And The Trump Organization Part Ways
After the successful opening of Trump SoHo, Bayrock Group and the Trump Organization were in talks to do more luxury real estate developments together.
As a start, they wanted to construct buildings similar to Trump SoHo in Florida and Arizona under the same licensing terms that would grant the Trump Organization 18% equity in the projects in exchange for using the Trump brand in the names of the buildings.
Unfortunately, timing was not on Bayrock Group and the Trump Organization’s side.
The two companies were discussing the developments in 2008, when the American real estate market was severely hit by the financial crisis that ultimately spread to the rest of the world.
The global crisis stopped Bayrock Group and the Trump Organization’s plans and negatively affected the American real estate market to a point where Bayrock Group’s founder, Tevfik Arif, decided to focus on doing business in Europe and Asia.
He left the United States to be closer to his new focal point and has retired from most of his daily tasks in Bayrock Group. However, he remains an important and valuable advisor to the company.
Bayrock Group has not been involved in any real estate development projects in the United States in recent years, but the company invested real estate assets worth more than $2.5 million while it was active.