Battle brews for the Biltmore Hotel in SoFla

Merchants Hospitality wants to buy lease, while leaseholders plan for partner to buy out the other
By Ina Cordle | June 24, 2016 07:30AM

Biltmore Hotel (Credit: Jorge Royan)

Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables (Credit: Jorge Royan)

From the South Florida website: New York-based Merchants Hospitality wants to pay $110 million to buy the lease for the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables and renovate the historic property, as the current partners plan a separate change in interest following a contentious dispute, The Real Deal has learned.

In a letter of intent for the Biltmore, signed by Merchants Hospitality president and CEO Abraham Merchant and obtained by TRD, Merchants has proposed to pay $40 million to pay off debt and $70 million to be split evenly between the 50/50 partners whose group holds the longterm lease, Gene Prescott and Robert Kay. The deal also includes at least $20 million to be spent to repair, renovate and upgrade the hotel to “luxury standards,” plus $5 million to be paid to the city of Coral Gables, which owns the hotel. [more]