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Will Marriott Be a Sore Loser After Eden Roc Lawsuit Drama?

Where: 4525 Collins Avenue [map], Miami Beach, FL, United States, 33140
March 28, 2013 at 9:01 AM | by | Comments (5)

It's been about a year since trouble first started brewing down at Miami's famed Eden Roc Hotel. The property, which has been around since the 1950s, is managed by Marriott, but the relationship between Marriott and the hotel's owners was bad. So bad, in fact, that the hotel tried to boot Marriott from the premises during an after-dark siege. Serious drama, right?.

A judge (who happened to be a self-professed Eden Roc "fan"") declared back in November that Marriott has the legal right to remain as manager of the hotel.

Or should we say, 'had.'

Yesterday, the hotel's attorney announced that Eden Roc has won in a New York Appellate court the right to oust Marriott as manager of the property. The attorney called it "a vindication," and believes the outcome of this bitter lawsuit will help settle future disputes between hotel owners and management:

"A hotel manager is barred from commandeering a property against the owner’s wishes.  Any doubts in that regard have been laid to rest."

Whether or not this lawsuit will be a boon to hotel owners "across the country," we can't really tell. But we sure are glad that things worked out for Eden Roc. Marriott's a fine brand and all, but clearly, they had outstayed their welcome (something a hotel company, of all people, should really be more sensitive to!), and couldn't take a hint when the relationship was over.

We're guessing plenty of champagne corks will be going off tonight at Eden Roc. As for Marriott, well, better luck next time!

Have you been following this saga? Do you feel Eden Roc is vindicated after the higher court's recent decision? Let us know your thoughts below!

[Photo: Eden Roc]

Comments (5)

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A Win in Some Respects

There are still damages that can be claimed by Marriott and that number could be high.

It is a win over the presumptive right to manage or, in this case, under manage expectations.  Owners must realize that they turn over their assets to companies with another agenda in terms of making money and enhancing reputations.  Mgmt companies also are a guaranteed a revenue stream, in the worst of times, not shared with an owner.  


Marriott the sore loser?

The real losers are all of the employees who have worked their since the hotel reopened in disastrous conditions in 2008, and now won't have employment options, with highly respectable Marriott anyhow.  They can stay on with whomever the owner's hire to manage it, but that won't be a great option.

These broke owners are trying everything they can to not have to pay back money that they borrowed from Marriott to finish the shotty project that they started.  They won't be able to come out as the winners.  What a sorry "family" they are.


Eden Roc Owner is Sore Loser Here

So we have two sophisticated parties who spent considerable time, effort and money to negotiate a long-term business relationship.  Presumably, as part of that negotiation, the parties discussed the rights for ending that relationship - including the length of the term, default, performance termination, etc.  Now, rather than honor their deal, Eden Roc Owner looks to the courts to find cover for their unlawful eviction of Marriott in express violation of the contract they negotiated.  Whether hotel owners realize it or not (or want to realize it), this is a bad result for the hospitality industry.

Eden Roc

Whatever the damages will end u totaling...the fact still remains the owners of the property wanted Marriott out. I've been watching this for the last year or so and it seems to me that the issue at hand was mostly the management of the property and the lack of profitability thus far. The Eden Roc will be back on top with or without flying a larger brand's banner. In the end they may even go back to Marriott strictly as a franchise. In fact I wouldn't be suprised if the property become a Marriott Beach Resort or a property within the Autograph or Hyatt collections.

Eden Roc Management Woes

I stayed at the Eden Roc last summer as a Platinum member of Marriott rewards.  My room was lovely if you like a view of the beach and 100 yards of black asphalt roof.  And if that is not enough, I went to sit on the balcony couch and it was missing a leg.  I went crashing to the floor and twisted both knees, my back, and jammed my  hand into the concrete balcony.

I called the front desk and they simply asked "would you like us to fix it".  There was no concern about my health or safety.  

I requested a new room.  The new room had a better view but there was no balcony furniture.  Who offers a room with no furniture on the balcony.  A ghetto hotel that is who.  Further, the stone coffee table tops were not attached to the tables.  One table top narrowly missed crashing into my foot as it fell off.  Imagine if a small child had knocked that same table over.  A 15-20 lb table top would have crushed a child.  Oh yes, I mention that situation to hotel management.  By the time I left several days later, nothing had been to fix this additional hazard.

Is this a poorly run hotel?  The worst.  After spending the last 10 months in physical therapy, I am finally getting some feeling back in my legs.  The pain in my hand is almost gone.  

If you have a choice, go somewhere else.

Safe Travels,

Ouch

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