The Closer

New York Daily News, Jason Sheftell, January 16, 2009

Another long-awaited building will open in the coming weeks.The Setai, New York, the spa-lifestyle, clean-living development in the Financial District, is going through its finishing design touches and announcing key staff.

Just this week, the Setai Group and Zamir Equities went public with the hiring of Ronan Henaff as general manager. Henaff, who formerly ran the food and beverage division at the Carlyle Hotel and was most recently the general manager at Cipriani Club 55 Wall Street, will oversee all the residential services at the building. That includes launching the Setai's restaurant SHO, the spectacular Setai Spa and the Setai Club, which will be New York's newest members-only hot spot.

Already boasting a member list affiliated with the Setai, Miami — a list that includes Janet Jackson, Lenny Kravitz, Sheryl Crow and Heidi Klum — the Setai Club counts buyers in the building and residents of its Miami sister project as a guaranteed early crowd. The restaurant, helmed by Australian chef Shaun Hergatt, opens next month. The private club and spa will open in March.

"The Setai will add a high-end, luxurious flavor to the neighborhood but will still be very warm and friendly," says Henaff, who has lived in the neighborhood for three years. "People don't realize how much this area has come to life in just the last year and a half. Retail like Tiffany's, Hermès, Maison du Chocolat. And there is more coming all the time."

Over 70% sold, Setai New York condominiums range from 475 to 3,424 square feet, with prices from approximately $815,000 to $7.87 million. We hear some major bold-faced names are lined up as founding members of the club and are taking serious looks at the building's remaining units. Public memberships will be sold for $5,000 on an annual basis. Daily breakfast and $1,000 in spa treatments are just two member perks. Of course, being in the same room as Lenny Kravitz or Heidi Kum is another.

Another neighborhood safety site hits the Internet. This one is free. From the people who started comes The new site allows viewers to do searches using someone's name, do neighborhood scans and sex offender searches, get recent statistics and get alerts as to when someone commits a crime. "We wanted to do something that allows people access to this information without spending any money," says Bryce Lane, president and chief operating officer of "This allows people to educate and protect themselves at the same time."

At 27 Mercer St., real estate's most recent art gallery-like sales office launched last night. The marketing center for the Rem Koolhaas building going up at 23 E. 22nd St. turns interior spaces into a building lying on its side. Prospective buyers walk into a tunnel of lights with black and white surfaces complemented by sculptural examples of the building itself. It's worth a walk by, as the tunnel experience is more artistic expression than sales office. It's jarring and strong and does the project justice. You're not sure where you are, and that's why it works. Marketed by Wilbur Gonzalez and Wendy Maitland of Brown Harris Steven's ID Marketing, this sales gallery says that big, bold projects are here to stay.

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