Malmaison and Hotel du Vin in search of buyer

02 July 2007 by
Malmaison and Hotel du Vin in search of buyer

Marylebone Warwick Balfour (MWB) has appointed Bank of America to secure a buyer for Malmaison and Hotel du Vin, the company announced today.

The move follows the failure of Vector Hospitality to float as a Real Estate Invesment Trust (REIT) and acquire the properties.

The 21 hotels are expected to be acquired by a property investment firm on a sale and leaseback basis, with MWB continuing to manage them.

MWB's biggest shareholder Mercury Real Estate last week slammed the group's attempts to sell the assets to Vector without an open sale process and called on Richard Balfour-Lynn, its chief executive, to instigate such a process or resign.

However, Balfour-Lynn insisted that the search for advisers had started in the immediate aftermath of the cancellation of the Vector flotation, well before Mercury's attack.

He told The Times that the company had been considering suing Mercury for its "disgraceful, defamatory and inaccurate allegations", but had decided it would not be in the best interests of other shareholders.

Malmaison owner denies accusations of Vector mismanagement >>

Vector's problems not an end to hotel REITs, say experts >>

Read more on REITs here >>

Two iconic hoteliers on verge of floating first European hotel REIT >>

By Daniel Thomas

E-mail your comments to Daniel Thomas here.

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