AJ Capital Partners begins construction on Graduate Roosevelt Island Hotel

A rendering of the Graduate Hotel Roosevelt Island. Photo credit: Graduate Hotels

AJ Capital Partners and Cornell University officially began construction on the Graduate Roosevelt Island at the Cornell Tech campus, part of the Graduate Hotels collection. AJ Capital selected Emigrant Bank to provide a $60-million, five-year floating-rate construction loan for the project. Jones Lang LaSalle acted as broker for the financing.

Cornell Tech, which opened its first phase of the new campus last year, extends Cornell University’s research and academic campus into New York City.

Graduate Hotels are collection of hotels that reside in university-anchored cities across the country. Every property is designed to celebrate and commemorate the local community, while offering an extended retreat to collegiate destinations. There are currently 10 Graduate Hotels open and operating across the U.S., and an additional eight hotels under development slated to open by 2020.


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AJ Capital Partners will open Graduate Roosevelt Island in spring of 2020. The 18-story, 224-key hotel is designed by architectural firm Snohetta. The hotel’s profile marks the entrance to the campus while offering guests unobstructed views of the skyline through floor-to-ceiling windows. The hotel’s residential aesthetic will reference the history of Roosevelt Island as well as the Cornell Tech campus. The property will include a full-service restaurant, indoor-outdoor rooftop bar with views of Manhattan and 3,000 square feet of meeting and event facilities.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Emigrant Bank and Cornell Real Property Services, Inc. on our debt financing for Graduate Roosevelt Island,” Eric Hassberger, principal and COO of AJ Capital Partners, said in a statement. “To be a part of the Cornell Tech campus as the anchor hotel serving the students, professors, innovators, and entrepreneurs of this pioneering institution is an incredible privilege.”

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