Brookfield sues West Side hotel over use of “Manhattan West” moniker

Developer claims Manhattan West Hotel violates trademark of nearby 7M sf megaproject
By Rey Mashayekhi | March 14, 2016 03:35PM

There can only be one Manhattan West. That’s according to Brookfield Property Partners, which is suing a small Midtown hotel that shares the name of its massive, mixed-use West Side development on claims of trademark infringement.

Toronto-based Brookfield filed a lawsuit against the Manhattan West Hotel on Friday in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The developer claims the four-story, 31-key hotel at 303 West 30th Street, at the corner of Eighth Avenue, has “without authorization adopted Brookfield’s Manhattan West trademark” for its 7 million-square-foot office, residential, retail and hotel “superblock,” which is located only two blocks away.

Brookfield trademarked the “Manhattan West” name in 2012 and sent notice to the hotel’s owner, CYMO Trading Corp., in 2014 to stop using the moniker, according to the lawsuit. The complaint notes that the hotel’s use of the name “began several years” after Brookfield first began using “Manhattan West” in connection with its real estate activities.

The developers adds that the hotel’s name “has led and will lead consumers” to mistakenly believe it is a joint venture with Brookfield and associated with its Manhattan West megadevelopment, particularly as Brookfield is planning its own hotel at the project. The lawsuit cites the use of the moniker for the hotel’s website, as well as similarities between the hotel’s logo and one used by Brookfield to promote the Manhattan West project.

Brookfield is seeking a “permanent injunction” prohibiting the Manhattan West Hotel from using the name or any related variation, as well as damages “it has sustained or will sustain by reason” of the trademark infringement.

The developer announced it sold a 44 percent stake in the five-building, $8.6 billion Manhattan West development to the Qatar Investment Authority in October. Brookfield started work last year on the 67-story One Manhattan West office tower after signing law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom to a 20-year lease for 550,000 square feet at the building.

Creskill, N.J.-based CYMO Trading Corp. has owned the property at 303 West 30th Street since 1981, according to city property records.

Neither representatives for Brookfield nor the Manhattan West Hotel returned requests for comment.