Acquiring a Manhattan business address represents a significant milestone for any professional company looking to grow and attract clients. Establishing your practice in Manhattan creates value and presence, and if you situate your partnership in a well-known neighborhood, you will form trust and add confidence in the eyes of your clients. For example, mailing written communications from a prominent address, gives those letters a sense of weight and urgency, warranting respect from the receiving party. Despite these obvious benefits of choosing office space in Manhattan, actually finding a suitable space can be very challenging. Commercial office space inventory in Manhattan is vast and complex, and contains many nuances that are unique to New York City.
Points to consider when looking for office space for your law firm
Office space for law firms may not seem specialized in nature (when compared to medical office space, for example), but there is a surprisingly long list of special amenities which most law firms would value. Consider that many modern technology and startup companies prefer office spaces with large open areas, for easy collaboration and interaction between employees. This is not true of law firms, which require privacy and comfort for their clients as well as a variety of room sizes to accommodate different situations. While many innovative companies welcome vibrant and quirky interior designs, most law firms require subdued, professional aesthetics that send a message of trust, legacy and reliance.
Here are some points that many law firms would consider valuable when searching for office space in Manhattan:
- Prominent location that is easy for clients to travel to, with multiple transportation options
- Sufficient building security to help high-profile clients feel at ease
- Nearby or underground parking for clients and staff
- Top-notch connectivity options for fast internet and reliable VoIP for multiple phone lines
- Good building infrastructure such as fast modern elevators, attractive lobbies and hallways
- A prominent and professional reception area
- A number of private offices for clients and partner meetings
- Conference rooms for depositions, mediations, settlements and other uses
- Soundproof infrastructure to ensure client confidentiality: solid hardwood doors, slab-to-slab sheetrock walls
Law and accounting companies were traditionally considered to be conservative industries, and companies would look for traditional office spaces with drop ceilings. This has gradually changed over the past decade, and some law and accounting firms now prefer loft-style offices. The demand for these new styles of office spaces has resulted in many buildings receiving upgrades in order to meet those needs. For instance, the Graybar Building, One Grand Central Place, and 370 Lexington Avenue have removed drop ceilings, polished their concrete floors, and created spaces with loft-like aesthetics, comparable to industrial buildings. As a result, tenants get to enjoy the best of both worlds, and landlords can market those spaces more efficiently.
Top 3 Manhattan neighborhoods for loft-style law firm office space
Are you looking to lease loft-style office space for your law firm? To help you with your search, we’ve compiled a list of neighborhoods which suit the needs of modern law firms of all sizes. These neighborhoods provide proximity to public transit, great walkability, spectacular views, and access to restaurants and meeting spaces. They offer many qualities that law firms look for when searching for a new office space. To speak with an expert about your law firm’s office space needs, call us at (212) 444-2241.
1. Grand Central
The Grand Central submarket used to be the number one destination for office-intensive companies. However, this neighborhood lost some of its appeal after the rise of modern new office towers in Hudson Yards. Many businesses migrated to this new, Class A neighborhood, leaving their outdated offices in Grand Central, Penn Station, the Plaza District, or the Financial District. Today, they might be tempted to come back, as Grand Central undergoes a veritable “renaissance.”
Many of Grand Central’s older office towers have been upgraded to modern standards. Open spaces, higher ceilings, industrial loft-like designs – these are things that you can now find in Grand Central’s office buildings.
Greenberg Traurig, one of Manhattan’s most respected law firms, has an office at the MetLife Building at 200 Park Avenue. The three million-square-foot tower was renovated in 2002 and upgraded to meet the needs of modern office tenants. Greenberg Traurig also occupies three floors at One Vanderbilt, which opened its doors right across Grand Central Terminal in early 2021.
Hogan Lovells moved its offices from 875 Third Avenue to 390 Madison Avenue in 2019. The firm’s new office was designed by Studios Architecture and includes a state-of-the-art conference center, four terraces, a triple-height cafe, and collaborative areas.
Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff, LLP has an office at 122 East 42nd Street, the Chanin Building. One of the finest examples of Art Deco architecture in NYC, the Chanin Building features 800,000 square feet of Class A office space, and its two lobbies connect directly to Grand Central Terminal.
2. Penn Station/The Garment District
A former industrial design hub, the Garment District offers some of Manhattan’s best creative office spaces. Architecture firms, media and communications companies, tech startups, financial and legal services firms – these are the types of tenants you can expect to find in the area. The Garment District has plenty of options, from modern, glass-clad office buildings to loft-style boutique properties featuring exposed brick, hardwood floors, and an industrial-chic design.
The Nelson Tower at 450 Seventh Avenue is an excellent option for law firms. The building has a beautiful lobby, panoramic views from the upper floors, views of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, and it’s conveniently located right across Penn Station. Tenants include the Kaufman Organization, Braverman Law, David Resnick & Associates, and the New York City Community Board.
Budget-friendly law firm office destinations in the area include 42 West 38th Street and 55 West 39th Street. If you’re looking for Class A office space in Midtown Manhattan, the iconic Empire State Building is an excellent option. Another option is Vornado’s One Penn Plaza, which is one of the area’s best Class A buildings, offering direct access to Penn Station. Most of these properties have exposed ceilings, providing the sought-after loft feel. Other office buildings featuring loft-style office space are former factory properties, such as 350 Seventh Avenue, 307 West 38th Street, and 545 Eighth Avenue.
3. City Hall
City Hall is one of the most important neighborhoods for legal, accounting, and financial services firms. Proximity to City Hall, Civil Court, Criminal Court, or Federal Court is crucial for lawyers, so having an office nearby saves these professionals a lot of time. If you are a litigation law firm, an office in the City Hall submarket is ideal, as your lawyers would constantly find themselves going to the courthouse, filing motions, and arguing in front of judges.
The Woolworth Building is one of the top law firm office destinations in the City Hall submarket. The landmark building at 233 Broadway features close to 900,000 square feet of Class A office space and residential space on the top floors. Tenants include the NYC Police Pension Fund, ShoP Architects, the U.S. General Administration, and law firms Housenbold and the Law Office of Bhunka O. Goldstein, among others.
Right across the street from the Woolworth Building is the Transportation Building at 225 Broadway. Offering more than 460,000 square feet of Class B office space, the building is home to tenants such as CMA Law Group, Golub & Golub, Rosenthal Law & Mediation, Palant & Shapiro, and Buckley Law Group.
Another good option for law firms looking for City Hall office space is 299 Broadway, the Ungar Building. This property has been renovated several times since its completion in 1905. It houses tenants such as Hess & Leibowitz, Farber Law, MFY Legal Services, and United Lawyers Inc., among many others. The Ungar Building is located on the border between Tribeca and City Hall and offers above-standard ceiling height and large floor plates of 12,000 to 13,000 square feet in size.
Are you looking for office space for your law firm in Manhattan? For 17 years, Metro Manhattan Office Space has been successfully representing tenants of all sizes in their search for office space in Manhattan. To learn about available office spaces, call us at (212) 444-2241 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.