Bankrupt Donald Trump once sold it, Saudi Prince wants to buy the New York Plaza Hotel

Bankrupt Donald Trump once sold it, Saudi Prince wants to buy the New York Plaza Hotel

The chateau-like New York Plaza Hotel is a New York landmark, featured in countless movies, including Home Alone 2. The New York Plaza Hotel is also known as the home of the children’s book character Eloise and the site of famous events such as the signing of the 1985 Plaza Accord that devalued the US dollar.

The New York Plaza Hotel has a long string of prior owners including now-President Donald J. Trump, who was forced to sell it to a group including Alwaleed more than two decades ago as part of a bankruptcy.

Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp and Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal’s Kingdom Holding Co., the investors trying now to buy New York’s historic Plaza Hotel, sued the property’s majority owner for allegedly reneging on an agreement that gives the group the right to match another offer.

Sahara US Corp, which owns a 70 percent stake in the hotel, demanded a second deposit and has been negotiating with other parties, according to a complaint filed in New York state court Friday.Minority investors Ashkenazy and Kingdom earlier this month exercised their right of first refusal on a $600-million bid for the property to instead try to purchase it on their own.

The clash between the investors is another twist in a years-long sales process for the 111-year-old building at the corner of Fifth Avenue and Central Park South.

Sahara US is an entity tied to Sahara India Pariwar, which has been attempting to sell its stake amid troubles faced by its chairman, Subrata Roy, who has been ordered to return billions of dollars to investors.

Sandeep Wadhwa, president of Sahara US, said the company disagrees with the allegations and will file a response in court.

Sahara earlier this month agreed to sell the Plaza to Shahal Khan, founder of Dubai-based family office White City Ventures, and Kamran Hakim, of New York landlord Hakim Organization.

They agreed to pay $600 million in a deal that was set to be completed on June 25, and talked up plans to use the hotel to launch a global brand.

Ashkenazy and Kingdom, which each own 12.5 per cent of the Plaza, said in the complaint that Khan and Hakim have been soliciting financing for the purchase with Sahara’s knowledge, which has interfered with their own ability to seek funding to purchase the hotel.


GOT NEWS? click here

possible to reach millions worldwide
Google News, Bing News, Yahoo News, 200+ publications


Ashkenazy is willing and able to fund the deal if Kingdom is unable to contribute, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be named because the transaction is private.

Ashkenazy and Kingdom asked the judge to compel Sahara to sell them the property, as well as to execute an appropriate agreement for the sale on the same terms as the initial deal granting them right of first refusal.

They also asked for a court order declaring a second deposit isn’t required.

In 2005, it was largely converted into luxury condominiums, though a smaller hotel component and restaurants, including the Palm Court and the underground food hall, remain.

Author: Juergen T Steinmetz

Juergen Thomas Steinmetz has continuously worked in the travel and tourism industry since he was a teenager in Germany (1979), beginning as a travel agent up through today as a publisher of eTurboNews (eTN), one of the world’s most influential and most-read travel and tourism publications. He is also Chairman of ICTP. His experiences include working and collaborating with various national tourism offices and non-governmental organizations, as well as private and non-profit organizations, and in planning, implementing, and quality control of a range of travel and tourism-related activities and programs, including tourism policies and legislation. His major strengths include a vast knowledge of travel and tourism from the point of view of a successful private enterprise owner, superb networking skills, strong leadership, excellent communication skills, strong team player, attention to detail, dutiful respect for compliance in all regulated environments, and advisory skills in both political and non-political arenas with respect to tourism programs, policies, and legislation. He has a thorough knowledge of current industry practices and trends and is a computer and Internet junkie.

Follow on Feedly