Alwaleed’s Kingdom and partners to sell New York Plaza for $600m

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May 5, 2018

The deal for the hotel which opened in 1907 is set to be completed on June 25

New York’s iconic Plaza Hotel is about to change hands.

Its buyers are Shahal Khan, founder of Dubai-based family office White City Ventures, and Kamran Hakim, of New York landlord Hakim Organization. They agreed to pay $600 million (Dh2.2 billion) for the hotel, at the southeast corner of Central Park, in a deal that is set to be completed on June 25.

“We worked for three and a half years to get to this stage and can’t wait until it’s closed,” said Mr Khan, who confirmed the purchase but declined to speak further. Mr Hakim didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. The agreement was first reported on Thursday by the Real Deal.

Mumbai-born British billionaires David and Simon Reuben are providing a loan of roughly $415m, or almost 70 per cent of the transaction’s value, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be identified because the details are private. A spokesman for the Reubens, who owned debt on the property, didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The Plaza, which opened 111 years ago, is known as the fictional home of children’s book character Eloise and has been featured in films such as “Home Alone 2” and “North by Northwest.” Among its prior owners is President Donald Trump, who was forced to sell it more than two decades ago as part of a bankruptcy. He also married his second wife, Marla Maples, there.

A previous owner, Elad Group, controlled by Israeli billionaire Yitzhak Tshuva, converted part of the Plaza to condominiums. The hotel portion is managed by Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, a unit of France’s Accor SA.

Its current owners include Sahara India Pariwar, Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal’s Kingdom Holdings and Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp. Sahara has been trying to sell its stake, in part because its chairman, Subrata Roy, is under pressure from the Indian government, which has ordered him to return billions of dollars to investors.

Representatives for Sahara, Kingdom and Ashkenazy didn’t respond to requests for comment.

This article was first published in  The National

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