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Everyone is jumping the gun on the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.
Saturday, 1st August 2009
Source : Andrew Calvo ~ Passions Of A Zealot
Over the past two days everyone has been eagerly reporting how the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas is in talks with Hilton to brand the project has either a Conrad and/or Hilton hotel, this seems to be all based upon a Las Vegas Review Journal story from July 27th but I think its a completely misplaced and uninformed rumor.

Here's why:

The reason I don't see the Cosmopolitan being branded as any Hilton Family hotel is quite simply because of Hilton's current lawsuit with Starwood Hotels. One of the main points of the Starwood/Hilton lawsuit was the accusation that in the beginning of 2008, two newly hired Hilton employees, (Ross Klein & Amar Lalvani formerly of Starwood Hotels) stole confidential documents and knowledge of projects that Starwood was actively developing (among other things).

Around that same time Starwood Hotels was apparently working on a deal to put a W Hotel & St Regis hotel in the Cosmopolitan; but once Klein & Lalvani moved to Hilton, there was complete silence on any possible deal with Starwood and the Cosmopolitan.

It wasn't until earlier this year that Deutsche Bank was said to be working on a deal in which the Cosmopolitan would be managed by Hilton; although it wasnt ever officially announced, it was pretty common knowledge in the industry that the Cosmopolitan would end up being one of Hilton's first Denizen Hotels.

I can't see how Starwood would enable the courts to let Hilton even come near the Cosmopolitan especially since the individuals who were privy to the W & Cosmopolitan deal went to Hilton and suddenly, the Cosmopolitan was going with Hilton.

I could be wrong but I think its safe to assume that the news bit that the LVRJ is relying on is old information which may have been correct back in March of this year, but is no longer correct since the Starwood/Hilton lawsuit. I still firmly believe that if one of the major lodging companies are to brand and manage the Cosmopolitan it will be Starwood with the W Hotel, and perhaps even a St Regis or Le Meridien.

In other good Cosmopolitan news: the joint finally has a General Manager, and has reiterated their planned opening date of late 2010 still a year away, but since the project has been under continaul construction throuhgout hte past few years, I see that as a realistic date.

I wouldn't be surprised to see the Cosmopolitan making a big announcement either right before MGM CityCenter opens, or in the beginning of 2010 after the CityCenter hoopla dies down, because the end of this year will be totally dominated by CityCenter news/announcements/reviews, etc.

andrew@alconic-inc.com

Andrew Calvo is a Commercial Real Estate Advisor in New Jersey, who lives in Tinton Falls, NJ. This blog is about my passions - primarily hotels, commercial real estate, and development, etc.

Since I have been in High School I've had numerous jobs, but the field which has always interested me is Real Estate, Hotel Development and Construction. I consider myself a zealot in that area - I try to absorb as much as I possibly can, take the experiences that I learn, or read about and use them in my life.

www.passionsofazealot.com
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