The 99 year Ground Lease for the Waldbaum’s Shopping Center

Here’s a makeshift-lease abstract for that infamous 99 year lease we all keep hearing about. Signed in 1983, this is a ground lease for the entire property between The City of Long Beach [lessor] & Long Beach Plaza Corp [Lessee]. There is a common misconception how this lease is for the Waldbaum’s itself. Please understand that’s not the case. Waldbaum’s [A&P] is just one of the many tenants in that center.

[UPDATE: According to some of the comments, A&P actually is Long Beach Plaza Corp.]

Take this info for what it is; there could be mistakes. Due to time restraints and boredom, this info is also incomplete. I’ll try to upload a scan of the entire lease as soon as I can.


LANDLORD: City of long Beach
TENANT: Long Beach Plaza Corp.
TERMS:  Ground Lease for the entire property.
LEASE DATE: May 20, 1983.
AMENDMENT (October 21, 1983): Additional property: Lots 5, 46, 47 block 95. Same terms modifying additional property to lease lease.  $2400 per annum. (There are no other amendments that I know of)

Tenant Pays Basic Rent + Additional Rent (triple net including tax, insurance, maintenance, etc.)


Equal monthly installments in advance 1st of month

Terms(Signed May 20, 1983) Basic Rent (per annum) Lease Amendment (October 21st, 1983) (per annum)* Total (per annum) paid in equal monthly installments in advance on the 1st of the month
construction period $0.00 $0.00 $0.00
First 5 years after $30,000.00 $2,400.00 $32,400.00
years 6 to 10 $40,000.00 $2,400.00 $42,400.00
years 11 to 15 $50,000.00 $2,400.00 $52,400.00
years 16 to 20 $60,000.00 $2,400.00 $62,400.00
years 21 to 25 $70,000.00 $2,400.00 $72,400.00
years 26 to 30 $80,000.00 $2,400.00 $82,400.00
years 31 to 40 $90,000.00 $2,400.00 $92,400.00
years 41 to 50 $100,000.00 $2,400.00 $102,400.00
years 51 to 60 $110,000.00 $2,400.00 $112,400.00
years 61 to 70 $120,000.00 $2,400.00 $122,400.00
years 71 to 80 $130,000.00 $2,400.00 $132,400.00
years 81 to 90 $140,000.00 $2,400.00 $142,400.00
Remaining $150,000.00 $2,400.00 $152,400.00


  • Along with the BASIC RENT, tenant also pays ADDITIONAL EXPENSES: Insurance, taxes, permits, fees, obligations, etc. All prorates on a daily basis, 
  • All contesting fees, tax certiorari appeals, rebates,refunds etc. belong to tenant.
  • I didn’t see any mention of  ‘Base Year’ credits. As far as I can tell, Long Beach Plaza Corp. pays 100% of all taxes and additional rent.


  • This was a neighborhood development program area. Appropriate for urban renewal ‘project area’
  • Use of Property: First 30 years may only be used for specific plan.
  • Tenant responsible for upkeep. Required to maintain in good repair / good condition.
  • Tenant must provide Generally liability insurance.
  • Indemnity Agreement: Landlord (Long Beach) is held harmless against liabilities, lawsuits, penalties, claims, liens, demands, etc.
  • Tenant may sublease/assign after 5 years term of lease (May 19 1988)
  • Surrender at end of term, property must be in good order, etc.

Lease termination:

  • Tenant to cover cost of restoration if an event (like Sandy) occurs. Landlord can terminate lease if this isn’t obliged.
  • Condemnation: (see scan below)

Screen Shot 2015-06-29 at 10.25.13 AM

  • Termination clause expenses prorated
  • No modification of lease without consent of both parties.
  • Termination of lease. Reason of default. Monetary defaults
  • Default events : failure to pay basic rent 15 day grace period.
  • Tenant has option to terminate lease.

Most of what else is in there is typical stuff you’d find in a blumberg form, I’ll try to get an actual scan of the entire lease as soon as I can.

28 Replies to “The 99 year Ground Lease for the Waldbaum’s Shopping Center”

  1. The only successful steakhouse long beach LB ever had was Lenny’s in the building where Minnesota’s now operates. There was a Manero’s on Ohio Ave (where the supermarket is now) in the 50’s but that operated only summers and then burned down. Lenny Beck started out with a lunch counter concession in Lee’s Pharmacy, later in a luncheonette in the West End Theater Building which he named Lenny’s. It was only breakfast/ lunch place. After a few years he turned it into a small steakhouse.
    After a few years he bought the defunct Doris Tenzer clothing store building on Minnesota, and later doubled the size of the building. Lenny was a very personable guy that everyone liked and his steakhouse featured very reasonable prices. He also had two parking lots and never put tables and chairs in either one like Minnesota’s. Lenny also served a couple of terms on the city council and the recreation commission. I think that LB can support a steakhouse with: personable, local, well known, hands on owner, with reasonable prices, plenty of free parking.

    Does such a thing exist today in LB?

  2. Is anyone allowed to conduct a business in the ocean after the beach closes and no lifeguards are on duty? I’m sure you carry liability insurance but how liable is the City of Long Beach for knowingly allowing a business to operate versus people who choose to do so at their own risk? Do your participants sign a City of Long Beach Release of Liability or just the one that protects you?

  3. Just one point that has been omitted: Long Beach Plaza is wholly owned by A & P, which owns Waldbaums. So Waldbaums collects the rent from all the stores in the plaza.

  4. The project was not without its scandals. I recall that the City received a Community Development Block Grant of $100,000, a large amount in 1982. It was to build a “satellite police station” in the new plaza.

    A tiny brick booth was constructed and the disposition of the remaining funds was quite suspect at the time.

  5. I am 100% insured and yes a release is signed by everyone that takes a surfing lesson with us (surf2live), my permit allows my surfing school to operate 24×7 year round, the city is covered under my insurance and I have been operating my school for over 35 years here in LB without any issues.
    I would think the real question is do the fly by night surfing instructors carry insurance, have a clue of safety ,have knowledge of the waters they teach in and pay any $ to the city, we do and they ,well go see for yourself just how many operate on a daily basis they pay nothing, no insurance or care about safety.
    Oh and please, I would love to hear just how many people you pulled out of the water when caught in the rip, had health issues or get pulled into the rock after hours when the lifeguards are off duty(8 pm) after hours, I have quite a few saves ,and you can check with the city or chief of Lifeguards on this.
    But as a life long resident I can respect you asking the questions you did.I am also a home owner here for over 35 years
    So with this said come on down to Pacific any day camp ,private lessons or coaching(yes I am a certified professional surfing coach/certified Master surfing instructor and the founder of Surfersway a 501c3 foundation that takes kids with special needs surfing here in this great city every summer (FREE) or Thursday night to see just how safe and fun we run our school.
    Remember your never to old to learn….

  6. Elliot, why do you spam a post on Waldbaums 99 year lease with your ad for a surf school? What kind of dim-wit are you?

  7. Elliot I have heard wonderful things about your surf school. We are fortunate to have excellent surf schools and shops here- not one in it for the profit or business but for the obsessive love of the ocean, sport and leisure.

  8. Elliot,
    It’s quite rude to pop into a thread with a sales pitch/aka advertisement that has ZERO to do with the topic of the thread. Just saying.

  9. Thanks for sharing this info Elliot. It is exciting to see the surf school taking on a larger presence. I will be stopping by with my son!

  10. Not being deleted, but some people are being heavily moderated, especially those who post 30 times a day using 30 usernames, bashing everything under the sun.

    Why are you such an angry person? I don’t appreciate my blog being used for some of the crap you post. Yes, I am talking to you.

    You accuse me of being ‘bought out’ and by ‘deleting posts negative about the current admin.’ I am accusing you of abusing the commenting system of the blog. No offense, but it’s people like you who give this blog a bad name. Please try to stay constructive with your criticism. Seabythecity has no room for filth.

    Thank you.

  11. Which is why you should go to an actual deli or butcher instead of a supermarket. Everyone cries there’s no mom and pop local stores left yet you shop for the cheapest product you can find at a chain when there’s a local option. If you want quality deli products, go to Sorrento’s or Brand’s.

  12. It’s common for municipalities to invoke eminent domain over their tenants. That’s how the LIRR got the stores that used to envelope the station when they wanted to knock them down and restore the place. The tenant, who leased the stores from the LIRR then subleased them to scummy businesses was a infamous US Senator’s mother. She was paid $3 million for the remainder of her 99 year lease.

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