Allure Group – Allure Healthcare LLC – One of the Bidders for Summit Park

joel-landau-45-rivington-street

Joel Landau from Twitter                            and                   Riving Street Facility
LostMessiah March 4, 2016

Allure Group – Rockland County May Have Been Lucky…

Allure Group/Allure Healthcare LLC was, according to Freedom of Information Law requests, one of the bidders on the Summit Park Hospital and Nursing Care Facility. They did not win the bid. The winning bidder was Sympaticare; and the principal, Shalom Braunstein is now suing Rockland County and Rockland Health Care Facilities Corporation to recover his deposit after he failed to close on the deal by the deadline. He had apparently been given a number of extensions. The failure of the deal to close subsequently resulted in the closing of the facility and movement of all of Summit Park’s patients. While an in-depth article about the Braunstein empire is long overdue,  Rockland can be very thankful that Allure did not acquire the property.

In an article dated, April 3, 2016, the New York Post reported:

The obscure Brooklyn company at the center of a City Hall scandal already owed millions of dollars in unpaid taxes, and its principals were accused of “secretly scheming” against a former business partner, long before the city signed off on a sweetheart deal that netted the firm a $72 million profit, records show.

The Allure Group, a cadre of young, seemingly disparate entrepreneurs, has been on a buying spree, snatching up nonprofit nursing homes across the city and turning them into for-profit cash cows.

Its $72 million payday for flipping a nonprofit Lower East Side nursing home to a luxury condo developer — after first getting asleep-at-the-switch bureaucrats to lift a deed restriction that would have prevented the conversion — has ignited a scandal that’s embroiled Mayor de Blasio and prompted two investigations.

City records show Allure owes $5.2 million in back taxes on a Brooklyn nursing home that used to be a nonprofit, and $853,795 on another nursing home in the borough that it bought last year and that is now slated for housing.

The for-profit firm also took over the operation of two nonprofit nursing homes — one in Harlem and one in Brooklyn — without buying the facilities themselves, thus keeping the properties tax exempt.

The burgeoning scandal surrounds Rivington House, a nursing home at 45 Rivington St. that Allure bought in February 2015 from Village Care, which had operated it as an AIDS hospice.

It paid $28 million, and Allure principal Joel Landau had assured the city in an e-mail, “I would also like to keep the home as it is.”

Allure applied to the state Department of Health to convert the home from one that cared for AIDS patients to a geriatric facility.

“Based on the materials submitted by the owner in connection with its conversion application, the department had every expectation that utilization would increase and the facility would continue to operate,” the DOH said.

Allure renamed the home the Rivington Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation. But it’s unclear if it treated a single patient there.

By May, the company signed a contract to sell the building to a developer for $116 million. It also asked the city to lift a deed restriction limiting the use of the property to a nonprofit residential health-care facility.

Top lobbyist James Capalino, a de Blasio pal and fund-raiser, had been lobbying for two years for the prior owner to have the deed restriction lifted.

The deed was changed in November 2015 in exchange for Allure’s $16 million payment to the city.

When the DOH returned to Rivington Street in December 2015 to recertify the nursing home, there was not a patient in sight.

De Blasio said last week that the administration was “too trusting” of Allure, which he said had “lied” to the city.

Landau did not return requests for comment.

Allure was incorporated in 2012, a few years after its principals acquired their first nursing homes.

In an online résumé, Landau, 35, calls himself a “master at turning poor-performing organizations into high-performing profitable companies.”

His partners are two Brooklyn men — Marvin Rubin, 39, and Solomon Rubin, 43 — and Melissa Guglielmo, 40, the company COO who is a licensed nursing-home administrator.

The purchases are made using limited liability companies. Most are heavily mortgaged.

In 2010, an Allure company paid $20 million to buy the nursing home at the former Victory Memorial Hospital in Brooklyn. It is now called the Hamilton Park Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

At around the same time, Landau and other investors teamed up with Dr. Jonathan Mawere, a nursing-home administrator, to buy two ailing nonprofit Brooklyn nursing homes — the Marcus Garvey Residential Rehab Pavilion and the Ruby Weston Manor.

Mawere accuses Landau and his investors of squeezing him out and says they were “secretly scheming to misappropriate the facility’s assets and steal them for the benefit of themselves and their confederates,” according to legal papers.

His lawsuit is ongoing, but Allure now runs both homes, having renamed them the Linden Center and the Crown Heights Center.

The $5.2 million tax bill for the Linden Center was due Friday. Of that sum, $4.4 million was for unpaid back taxes.

In 2013, Allure — using the name Williamsburg Services LLC — took over operation of the former nonprofit Aishel Avraham home in Brooklyn. It signed a 25-year lease agreement to run what it calls the Bedford Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation.

The property at 40 Heyward St. is still owned by Aishel Avraham and pays no taxes thanks to a state tax break. Only the sale of the property would lift that benefit.

Allure is avoiding a property-tax bill this year of $471,000, the city Finance Department says.

A similar arrangement seems to be in place at the former Greater Harlem Nursing Home in Manhattan, which was run by a nonprofit.

Allure took over its operation in 2014 but doesn’t own the property.

The nonprofit is still enjoying a tax break of about $300,000, the Finance Department says.

Greater Harlem’s tax-exemption renewal application to the city in October 2015 did not indicate it was renting any part of its property, said Theodore Oberman, Finance’s director of commercial exemptions and abatements.

Renting to a for-profit entity would remove the tax exemption, he said.

The city did cancel the exemption at the Cabs Nursing Home in Bedford-Stuyvesant when Allure bought it in 2015 for $15.6 million. Its $853,795 tax bill — including $652,724 in back taxes — was also due Friday.

An application was filed with the city to demolish the Nostrand Avenue building to construct a seven-story residential building.

For additional Reading:

The Real Deal “Allure Group owes city $5.2M in back taxes”

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21 thoughts on “Allure Group – Allure Healthcare LLC – One of the Bidders for Summit Park

  1. Your reference in the main story to the Sympaticare deal is missing the main part, which is that the county ended up closing the facility because of Brauntein’s pathetic handling of his bid and his misrepresentations made to authorities. He is suing to get his deposit back but he was the one who backed out the deal.

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    • Braunstein is going to come in a follow-up; but we can add that. As to your suggestions, we have increased the sidebar with the latest posts. We can’t figure out how to reduce the text shown but the right hand sidebar links will provide additional access. As to feeding into this, haven’t figured out that yet either. THANK YOU!

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      • Can you not pin a post to the top of the home page? If so, that would work… Make a Tips post and leave it on top. Folks need to be able to reach you to feed you info and they are reluctant to use email.

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  2. Mayor de Blasio on Friday warned of legal action against a Brooklyn healthcare firm for allegedly misleading his administration about its intention to keep a Lower East Side property operating as a nursing home.

    Speaking on NY1, Hizzoner said the city has “a lot of evidence” that the for-profit Allure Group hoodwinked the city on the fate of the property, which the firm sold to luxury real estate developers last month for $116 million.

    More…
    http://nypost.com/2016/04/01/livid-de-blasio-threatens-legal-action-over-72m-nursing-home-flip/

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  3. Not knowing how your software template works, not sure, but one simple way to do this would be to have a dedicated post for this purpose with a permanent shortcut at the top of the home page that akes you there. Tips could be sent via posts.

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  4. One more suggestion… a prominent News Tips button on the home page for others to feed stories and sources to you anonymously. Let’s make this site crowd-sourced by some of the best and most intuitive readers anywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. LOST MESSIAH – absolutely great site but have you thought about a format that would have the stories truncated on the first page so that we do not have to scroll as much to get from story to story? You know, more like FM used to have? I think it may help “unbury” important stories that would get lost with all the scrolling on the main page.

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    • Ditto! Great site (even inspired my name) I totally agree (suggested a format change last week). Hard to follow this format especially with all the stories coming out so quickly!

      All efforts to shed light on and hopefully root out the corruption must be applauded and assisted.

      BTW The characters in this latest scandal sound like they may be of the apologist posters on FM who boasted that they had Chassidic /Chareidi educations but managed to run big “businesses” and even employ lots of people. yeah…right…

      Liked by 1 person

  6. At a recent fundraiser for the Bobov Hasidic group attended by New York City mayor Bill de Blasio, City Council member David Greenfield told the crowd that de Blasio “did not forget his friends.”

    Now, de Blasio’s ties to the Bobov have put him on the defensive, amid a scandal over a nursing home chain run by a prominent Bobov businessman. Allure Group made $72 million in February flipping a Lower East Side home for AIDS patients to a condo developer. Now, the New York City Comptroller and the city’s Department of Investigation are investigating the deal, and de Blasio says that his administration was “misled” by the firm.

    Allure’s CEO, Solomon Rubin, is a prominent member of the Boro Park-based Bobov Hasidic group, one of the city’s largest ultra-Orthodox sects. The Bobov enjoy a particularly close relationship with de Blasio, who represented Boro Park in the City Council from 2001 to 2009.

    On March 9, days before the Allure scandal broke, de Blasio attended a fundraising dinner for Amidei Zion of Mosdos Bobov, a Bobov charity, at the New York Hilton. The mayor announced trash collection schedule changes meant to ease congestion in Boro Park, earning vigorous applause.

    De Blasio’s ties to the Bobov run deep. Bobov powerbroker Rabbi Yitzchok Fleischer, whose mother’s shiva de Blasio and his wife Chirlane McCray attended in January, told the online Jewish magazine Tablet in 2013 that de Blasio “owes me everything.”

    “Without me he wouldn’t be anyplace,” Fleischer said.

    De Blasio now faces tough questions about the Allure Group deal. The company purchased the Lower East Side home in February 2015 for just $28 million, promising that it would use the building to operate a nursing home. In November, Allure paid $16 million to the Department of Citywide Administrative Services for permission to retroactively adjust the deed on the property. In February of 2016, thanks to the deed change, Allure sold the property to a condominium developer for $116 million.

    “It makes me livid that this happened in one of the agencies that are part of my administration,” de Blasio told the local television station NY 1 on April 1, according to a transcript circulated by the mayor’s office. “We’re looking at all potential legal options related to the company that did this because we have a lot of evidence that they misled us.”

    Days earlier, at a press conference at NYPD headquarters, De Blasio told reporters that he was upset to have heard about the flip only after it was made public.

    The New York Times reported on March 31 that a prominent lobbyist who at different times worked for both the not-for-profit that sold the building to Allure and the developer that bought the building from Allure has raised $45,000 for de Blasio’s election campaign since October.

    Allure owns six New York City nursing homes, according to the group’s website. At least one of its executives shares a surname with Solomon Rubin; another, Joel Landau, who has been Allure’s public face, is not a member of the Bobov Hasidic group.

    Rubin did not respond to a message left at Allure’s office.

    Rubin sits on the board of Bnos Zion of Bobov, the sect’s school system for girls. “They are very well off and they support a lot of things that are going on in the community,” said Yoel Rosenfeld, a Bobov community activist, of Rubin. “He’s very involved.”

    Rosenfeld said that he escorted de Blasio in and out of the Bobov dinner on March 9, and that Rubin did not speak to the mayor. While he assumed Rubin was in attendance, Rosenfeld said that there were more than 1,000 people there, and he did not see him.

    Speaking from the Bobov dais, New York City Councilman Greenfield praised the mayor , lauding de Blasio for rolling back restrictions on the controversial metzitzah b’peh circumcision rite.
    New York Senator Charles Schumer also spoke at the March 9 dinner, and Congressman Jerry Nadler was in attendance. The Bobov rebbe, Ben Zion Aryeh Leibish Halberstam, did not arrive at the dinner until after de Blasio had departed.

    Read more: http://forward.com/news/national/337575/hasidic-businessman-who-flipped-aids-home-part-of-sect-with-cozy-ties-to-ma/#ixzz44xbeEZxA

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  7. Hasidic Businessman Who Flipped AIDS Home Part of Sect With Cozy Ties to Mayor Bill de Blasio
    Rockland County recently went through a farcical process of trying to sell the Summit Park hospital and now faces a lawsuit from the Monsey adult home operator who pulled out of a $32 million deal to buy the Hospital and Nursing Care Center last fall.

    In a lawsuit filed March 8 in state Supreme Court in New City, Shalom Braunstein is suing the county for nearly $5.9 million for his deposit and other damages. He alleges the county and its local development corporation failed to fulfill numerous critical conditions by the planned Sept. 30 sale date. The lawsuit claims the failed transaction caused Braunstein, owner of Sympaticare, “public shame and embarrassment”.
    His lawyer, Michael Sussman, wrote in a statement announcing the litigation. “Undoubtedly Rockland County would have benefitted by his purchasing control of the Summit Park Nursing Home and creating a first-class L-TACH facility in the same building. Instead the county has closed the nursing home and lost the opportunity to develop a critically needed L-TACH facility — both to the detriment of its residents. There was no cooperation, they stonewalled me throughout,” Braunstein said. “All the blame, it’s a lot of character assassination.”

    http://www.lohud.com/…/…/03/14/summit-park-lawsuit/81762354/

    We shall be doing an article later on the individual firms which bid on the Summit Park hospital which may cause further “public shame and embarrassment” but for the moment let’s take a look to the south where it looks like the ‘hospital business’ has become a problem for the Democratic Mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio because he was “asleep at the switch” and is now suffering from “public shame and embarrassment”.
    According to Forward.com de Blasio’s ties to the Bobov Hasidic sect have put him on the defensive, amid a scandal over a nursing home chain run by a prominent Bobov businessman.

    The Allure Group made $72 million in February flipping a Lower East Side home for AIDS patients to a condo developer. Now, the New York City Comptroller and the city’s Department of Investigation are investigating the deal, and de Blasio says that his administration was “misled” by the firm.
    Who was it that “misled” poor Bill?

    Allure’s CEO, Solomon Rubin, is a prominent member of the Boro Park-based Bobov Hasidic group, one of the city’s largest ultra-Orthodox sects. The Bobov enjoy a particularly close relationship with de Blasio, who represented Boro Park in the City Council from 2001 to 2009.

    On March 9, days before the Allure scandal broke, de Blasio attended a fundraising dinner for Amidei Zion of Mosdos Bobov, a Bobov charity, at the New York Hilton. De Blasio’s ties to the Bobov run deep. Bobov powerbroker Rabbi Yitzchok Fleischer, whose mother’s shiva de Blasio and his wife Chirlane McCray attended in January, told the online Jewish magazine Tablet in 2013 that de Blasio “owes me everything. Without me he wouldn’t be anyplace,” Fleischer said.

    Misled by those with whom one is deeply tied? How terrible that this would happen to such a nice guy!
    De Blasio now faces tough questions about the Allure Group deal. The company purchased the Lower East Side home in February 2015 for just $28 million, promising that it would use the building to operate a nursing home. In November, Allure paid $16 million to the Department of Citywide Administrative Services for permission to retroactively adjust the deed on the property. In February of 2016, thanks to the deed change, Allure sold the property to a condominium developer for $116 million.

    Read more of this story at the link below.
    http://forward.com/…/hasidic-businessman-who-flipped-aids-…/

    Perhaps the mayor should come to Rockland County for some lessons on how not to be misled by those who believe that without their votes many politicians wouldn’t be anyplace, including de Blasio’s friends the Clintons. In Rockland County, County Executive Ed Day, recently moved to foreclose on Patrick Farm – scheduled to be developed for Hasidic housing – because of several years of unpaid property taxes amounting to $350,000. Remarkably within days of his announcement the bill was paid indicating that the owners may have had the money all the time and were simply ‘shafting’ the county and the other taxpayers with this deficit.

    http://www.lohud.com/…/patrick-farm-rockland-fore…/82101338/

    But back to New York City. You see not paying taxes seems to be coming something of a pattern. We learn from the New York Post that the “obscure Brooklyn company” at the center of this City Hall scandal owed millions of dollars in unpaid taxes, and its principals were accused of “secretly scheming” against a former business partner, long before the city signed off on a sweetheart deal that netted the firm a $72 million profit.
    With “friends” like these does the mayor need “enemies”.

    The Allure Group, a cadre of young, seemingly disparate entrepreneurs, has been on a buying spree, snatching up nonprofit nursing homes across the city and turning them into for-profit cash cows. Its $72 million payday for flipping a nonprofit Lower East Side nursing home to a luxury condo developer — after first getting asleep-at-the-switch bureaucrats to lift a deed restriction that would have prevented the conversion — has ignited a scandal that’s embroiled Mayor de Blasio and prompted two investigations.
    Fortunately in Rockland County our County Executive does not appear to be “asleep at the switch” but is very much aware of the schemes being promulgated in his jurisdiction. Continuing with the NY Post commentary we further learn …..

    City records show Allure owes $5.2 million in back taxes on a Brooklyn nursing home that used to be a nonprofit, and $853,795 on a shuttered nursing home in the borough that it bought last year and that is now slated for housing. The for-profit firm also took over the operation of two nonprofit nursing homes — one in Harlem and one in Brooklyn — without buying the facilities themselves, thus keeping the properties tax exempt.

    The burgeoning scandal surrounds Rivington House, a nursing home at 45 Rivington St. that Allure bought in February 2015 from Village Care, which had operated it as an AIDS hospice. It paid $28 million, and Allure principal Joel Landau had assured the city in an e-mail, “I would also like to keep the home as it is.” Allure applied to the state Department of Health to convert the home from one that cared for AIDS patients to a geriatric facility. “Based on the materials submitted by the owner in connection with its conversion application, the department had every expectation that utilization would increase and the facility would continue to operate,” the DOH said.

    Allure renamed the home the Rivington Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation. But it’s unclear if it treated a single patient there. By May, the company signed a contract to sell the building to a developer for $116 million. It also asked the city to lift a deed restriction limiting the use of the property to a nonprofit residential health-care facility. Top lobbyist James Capalino, a de Blasio pal and fund-raiser, had been lobbying for two years for the prior owner to have the deed restriction lifted. The deed was changed in November 2015 in exchange for Allure’s $16 million payment to the city.

    When the DOH returned to Rivington Street in December 2015 to recertify the nursing home, there was not a patient in sight. De Blasio said last week that the administration was “too trusting” of Allure, which he said had “lied” to the city.

    Maybe the mayor has now learned to never trust such “friends” who may consider “lying” to get the deal they want from the government? Is it the excuse of the mayor of one of the world’s largest cities that he was “asleep at the switch” and that he had no idea that to those whom “he owed everything” would not expect that they could take “everything” in return?

    Read more at this link ……
    http://nypost.com/…/shady-firm-dupes-city-to-profit-72m-in…/

    In Rockland County, Ed Day, called the bluff of those claiming they wished to buy the Summit Park hospital and called the bluff on those claiming they couldn’t pay their property taxes on Patrick Farm.
    Let us hope that Day decides to stay at the helm here and not decide any time soon to run as the next Republican mayor of New York City.

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  8. By the way, while all of this is happening “over there” and people get distracted by this “shiny object” scandal, no one eve questions where the hell these Chassidim get the millions of dollars to buy these properties. I can guarantee you it aint Citibank. This is a corrupt system of tax evasion and money laundering that finances these deals.

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  9. Here is all you need to know:

    “Before the city agreed to lifting the deed restriction at 45 Rivington Street, Joel Landau, an Allure executive, wrote in an email that the property would be maintained as a nursing home. ”

    “The property had already been under contract months before the deed was lifted.”

    Nothing but liars and crooks…

    Thank goodness your site is up and running – otherwise the Rechnitz’s of the world would have quashed this story too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Anonymous, thanks. Allure was also one of the bidders on the Summit Park deal, which was ultimately won by Sympaticare and Summit Park Acquisitions, a Braunstein company. This particular company (Braunstein’s) is currently also trying to acquire a Red Hook property for the purpose of a nursing facility. The transaction would be somewhat similar to the Summit Park deal. Apparently, Allure and Braunstein’s entities are competitors in a number of bids. We are following, as well, the stories you listed above regarding Allure, very closely. We wholly agree with you regarding the amount of “$$$” that flows through the community. The money is all cash and untraceable, as far as we can tell, as well.

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