Relevant Group owes $3M for Tommie hotel project: suit

Construction firm asks court to sell the hotel to recoup money

Relevant Group’s Grant King and the Tommie Hotel at 6516 Selma Avenue in Hollywood (Getty Images, Relevant Group, LoopNet)
Relevant Group’s Grant King and the Tommie Hotel at 6516 Selma Avenue in Hollywood (Getty Images, Relevant Group, LoopNet)

Relevant Group is in hot water over a large sum of allegedly unpaid contractor and construction fees.

Suffolk Construction Company, based in Downtown L.A., has filed a lawsuit against Relevant, claiming it owes $3.1 million for unpaid labor, equipment, supplies and other materials at its Tommie hotel project in Hollywood.

In May, Suffolk Construction recorded a mechanic’s lien against the Tommie hotel for the same amount, claiming the hotel failed to pay a variety of general construction fees. Relevant opened the 212-unit Tommie Hollywood hotel in December.

A Relevant Group spokesperson said “Suffolk was already paid in full and any open items are the result of typical disputes at the end of a large construction project,” adding the dispute is also related to some subcontracted work.

Now the construction firm is asking the court to foreclose on the mechanic’s lien, put the property up for sale, and use any proceeds to pay back the alleged $3.1 million owed, according to the complaint. If the parties choose not to settle and the court determines a sale, any remaining proceeds would have to go towards paying off senior lenders and a $72 million mezzanine loan on the property, provided last year by Machine Investment Group.

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It’s not the first time an entity has asked a court to foreclose on a mechanic’s lien tied to the Tommie hotel. In March, an electrical engineering firm sued Relevant for owing $652,000 in subcontractor fees, to be paid through Suffolk Construction, court documents show. The parties settled that case last month for an undisclosed amount.

Other engineering and construction firms have filed mechanic’s liens against the Tommie hotel over the last six months, claiming unpaid work on scaffolding, shoring and window furnishings.

Relevant had originally planned to open the Tommie hotel at 6516 Selma Avenue in 2020, though the pandemic caused delays. The project is part of the company’s mini empire of Hollywood hotels. Next door, the firm built the 190-key Thompson Hollywoodl, which opened in October.

The firm has now pivoted its sights to Downtown L.A., where it is working to redevelop the Morrison Hotel, made famous by appearing on The Doors’ 1969 album cover of the same name. Last month, the company said it was looking for a joint venture partner to invest in the project.

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