If you are living hand to mouth despite earnings that should place you in the lap of luxury, your rent’s to blame. The pandemic didn’t help matters. Rent prices are climbing. The median rent for a one-bedroom in the Big Apple is more than $3,400, which is 3.73% higher than it was in 2020.

Determined to make affordable housing possible for struggling and affluent New Yorkers, Stephen Jemal, along with his son Norman S. Jemal, is planning on delivering thousands of reasonably priced and super affordable luxury apartments in Manhattan. The initiative aptly titled CENTRAL involves the conversion of prime located Manhattan buildings into luxury apartments that will be offered on sale or put up for rent. 

New Yorkers don’t have to wait long either. The hard-working and driven father and son duo along with the JemRock Organization team are determined to complete the affluent housing project in 12 to 18 months. The timeline may seem impossible, but not for Stephen Jemal who is adamant on ensuring New Yorkers can “Live, Work and Be Well”, a slogan that aptly defines the three-point concept for the apartments. 

The vision is just as iconic as the maestro behind it. Read on to find out how this honorable citizen of the United States made his mark on the US real estate market and made investors salivate. 


Who Exactly Is Stephen Jemal?

Stephen Jemal was born and raised in Brooklyn, a community where he graduated with honors from the school of hard knocks. Even though he was the youngest of 8 siblings, he started working at a young age. His exemplary work ethic, discipline and street smarts are a credit to his extraordinary parents who maintained a strict, yet loving home.

He started working at the age of 10 in the Spanish Harlem area for his father, Norman N. Jemal and grew up to be a fine US citizen who produced hundreds of employment and housing opportunities for New Yorkers. His work ethic and discipline knew no bounds.

By the time he turned 16, Stephen Jemal had 3 specialty electronic stores in Harlem which sold records as well as electronics. But his ambitions didn’t stop with just a few stores. He was a dreamer who was determined to climb mountains and he did not disappoint.

Stephen Jemal opened his first “Nobody Beats the Wiz” store in Downtown Brooklyn in 1976, in a store that his great father found for him. With Jemal behind the wheel, the small store eventually grew into a chain of more than 100 stores that covered six states! With sales amounting to over $2 billion and over 6,000 employees, he was on a roll. 

The brand grew rapidly in reputation and prestige because of his hard work and his ability to bring people together. But he didn’t stop there. Once he opened his 7th store, Stephen Jemal decided to explore the construction business by opening and running his own in-house construction company to save money, time and maximize control. To date, it has been responsible for building countless retail stores and shopping centers which benefited from a total vertical integration of all aspects of design, planning and construction management. Jemal’s insistence on preventing cost overruns and time delays while focused on building a top-notch construction team to execute at every level. 

Jemal was involved in literally EVERYTHING – from complete interior fit-outs to fixtures, nothing was approved without his say-so and evaluation. It’s the main reason why Nobody Beats The Wiz is still one of the most recognized brands in the US.

How Stephen Jemal’s Triumphs Carry Over to CENTRAL 

CENTRAL is being made with that same ground-up approach as Jemal’s previous, highly successful endeavours. Along with his son, Norman S. Jemal, he is determined to ensure that all CENTRAL residents can maintain a comfortable, lasting and fulfilling, yet affordable luxury lifestyle in a place they can call home for decades. 

Each building pays homage to the ‘Work Well’ component of their slogan. Residents can reach the bottom floors in a state-of-the-art elevator and step straight into a pristine glass work station. These work stations are available exclusively for CENTRAL residents only and will have all of the amenities that can make a typical work day productive. This also includes a central conference room that can be reserved by residents.

Jemal didn’t stop there. In keeping with the ‘Fit Well’ component of his slogan, each building will be fitted with a custom, top-quality fitness studio complete with a fully-equipped gym, yoga/pilates studios, organic juice bars and restaurants with healthy and nutritious menus. Needless to say CENTRAL residents, whether they are families, individuals or groups of assorted residents, can have a peaceful, happy and healthy life in a community based on Jemal’s revolutionary ideas. 

Final Words

Stephen Jemal’s claim to fame is his drive and his ability to see obstacles as challenges that need to be overcome, not insurmountable mountains. Needless to say this honourable citizen of the United States is an asset that the nation can really get behind and support as he creates new jobs and housing opportunities no one thought were possible. 

With help from his equally inspiring and hardworking son (who had a key role in researching and developing the concept behind CENTRAL), JemRock’s Masterplan as well as help from Alex Elkin from Eastbound Construction, Stephen Jemal has no plans of slowing down. His dream of ensuring that New Yorkers from all walks of life can live as the top 1% is a dream that is slowly but surely becoming a reality that everyone will root for.

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