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December 11, 2015- Likely due to slow Brookfield Place construction that has frustrated all of the commercial tenants, as well as disappointing foot traffic at the mall, Joël Robuchon has bailed out of his plans at Brookfield Place. This is no surprise to some int he local industry.
Instead of a restaurant, the space that overlooks the marina will be a Saks Fifth Avenue men’s shop.
Meanwhile, a health food restaurant from Phoenix called True Foods is opening at the entrance of 230 Vesey by Amada.
Update December 14, 2015- The Post has an update. “So, what happened to the Robuchon deal, which was heralded as the biggest downtown restaurant news since the Dutch era?
Several top restaurant/retail brokers told The Post the Robuchon team “didn’t have its act together” at Brookfield Place and at several locations it scouted previously.
But Robuchon’s investment partner blamed “old” bricks and mortar for his retreat.
Alex Gaudelet, CEO of Invest Hospitality, which funds, licenses and manages Robuchon’s planned new North American operations, said, “In the last few months, the reality of the space kind of kicked in.
“It’s an old building,” he said of 250 Vesey St., which opened as 4 World Financial Center in 1986 — hardly a dinosaur. Law firms Jones Day and Hudson’s Bay recently signed leases for much of the tower’s office portion.
Industry sources had speculated it would cost an imposing $10 million to build Robuchon’s eatery, but Gaudelet scoffed, “Not true — it was much more.”