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NEW YORK CITY-Beacon Capital Partners has agreed to buy 1211 Ave. of the Americas, between 47th and 48th streets, for more than $1.5 billion. The company was among more than 30 investors that bid on the 45-story, 33-year-old office building. At the same time, the company has purchased the largest building in Westchester County, Westchester One for $181.5 million.

In Manhattan, the transaction is believed to be the second-largest, single-asset commercial real estate transaction ever in the US, after the $1.72-billion sale last year of the MetLife Building at 200 Park Ave., connected to Grand Central Terminal. Doug Harmon of Eastdil was exclusive representative for the transaction.

The tower is supposedly near 100% occupancy with more than 500,000 sf, currently asking about $55 a sf, scheduled to expire within the next six years. Average asking rents for class A office space along the Avenue of the Americas near Rockefeller Center are around $60 per sf, according to research by Cushman & Wakefield. Rents in the neighborhood, though, can reach as high as $110, depending on the building or floor.

The New York Post and the News Corp. occupy about half of the two million sf in 1211 Ave. of the Americas. Other prominent names among about 20 tenants there include J. P. Morgan Chase, Wachovia Securities and the Boston law firm of Ropes & Gray.

Westchester One, a 851,773-sf building–the tallest office building in Westchester, although shorter than some residential towers–has been owned and managed by Bianco & Pepe, a family-owned enterprise, since it was built in 1975. The 31-year-old glass, steel and concrete building, the first high-rise office complex in Downtown White Plains, was occupied by IBM in the 1980s. It now has multiple tenants, including Argent Mortgage, Blue Sky Studios, Reuters and United Health Care, and is 94% leased.

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