The Real Deal New York

Saudi family in talks to pay $352M for Plaza

Planned foreclosure auction for iconic hotel canceled this spring

June 21, 2016 08:30AM

The Plaza Hotel and Subrata Roy

The Plaza Hotel (inset: Subrata Roy)

Could the Plaza Hotel finally be getting a new owner?

After a canceled foreclosure auction this spring, an unidentified member of the Saudi royal family and London-based investment firm 3 Associates are in talks to buy the iconic property for $352 million, the New York Post reported. The joint venture is also looking to buy London’s Grosvenor House for $882 million and the Dream Downtown Hotel in Chelsea for $235 million.

The Plaza is owned by India’s Sahara India Pariwar, whose notorious founder Subrata Roy has been imprisoned for two years on contempt charges stemming from accusations of an illegal bond sale.

Earlier this year, billionaire investors David and Simon Reuben – who own the Plaza’s debt – decided to foreclose on the property. But they canceled an auction set for April in order to give Roy more time to sell the property and repay his loan. The Reuben brothers paid $800 million for the Plaza’s debt, plus notes on the Dream hotel.

The 557,000-square-foot Plaza, located at 768 Fifth Avenue, has changed hands several times over the past few decades. GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump bought it in 1988. He sold it to Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin-Talal, who passed it to the Elad Group. Roy paid Elad $575 million for a 75 percent stake in the hotel in 2012. [NYP] – E.B. Solomont

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