Marriott International Inc.’s St. Regis brand is the lead bidder to take over the 65-storey Trump International Hotel & Tower in Toronto and management rights of the company, said sources close to the matter.
JCF Capital ULC, the closely-held U.S. firm that owns the building, is also in talks with Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc., which has pitched its Waldorf Astoria name, and Mandarin Oriental International Ltd., said unknown sources who want to keep their identification confidential.
One of the operators of JCF Capital, Jay Wolf, said that “No final agreement is in place” and refuses to further comment. Also, Spokespeople for Marriott and Hilton organization declined to comment, and representatives for the Trump Organization and Mandarin didn’t immediately respond to request seeking comment.
It could still take four to six weeks to close the deal to re brand the Trump International Hotel & Tower, one of the sources said, while the other said it could take up to two weeks or thereabout.
“There are a number of hotel groups circling for the management,” said one of the sources.
It is learnt that Trump, whose business connections were the subject of two lawsuits filed by members of congress and Maryland and District of Columbia officials this week, has never owned the project. The building was developed by Talon International Inc., which was later defaulted on a construction loan, and the property was brought in a court-run sale by JCF ULC earlier this year.
That sale included 211 hotel units, 74 residential units and the most of the commercial, retail and amenity space in the property.
While Trump has resigned from any roles in his many companies, he has not divested his ownership of them. Instead, Trump’s business interests were placed in a trust overseen by an independent ethics officer and managed by trump’s sons, Eric and Don Jr., along with Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg. The president is the beneficiary of that trust.
Marriott’s negotiations in Toronto come as Chief Executive Officer Arne Sorenson urges the U.S. president to prove ties with Cuba. Trump heads to Miami Friday and is expected to roll back part of the Obama administration’s policies to thaw relations with the island nation.