LA judge throws out all claims in Dubai hotel dispute

Lawsuits by Viceroy and Dubai's Five Holdings over luxury property on Palm Jumeirah dismissed
By Staff writer
Wed 14 Mar 2018 03:25 PM

Viceroy Hotel Group on Wednesday vowed to retake control of a luxury Dubai hotel after a US judge threw out all claims made in lawsuits filed by it and Dubai-based Five Holdings.

The company made the announcement after the Los Angeles Superior Court has decided to throw out a lawsuit brought by Dubai-based Kabir Mulchandani’s Five Holdings over the running of the Viceroy Palm Jumeirah Dubai. 

The hotel operator said it will seek recovery of its attorney’s fees as a result of the dismissal of the lawsuit, and will continue to pursue its claims for fraud, extortion, conversion and unfair business practices against Mulchandani and his affiliates in the Los Angeles Superior Court.

It added that it will take "all steps necessary" to be reinstated as the manager of the hotel.

But Five Holdings issued its own statement saying the judge had also thrown out all allegations made against it, adding that it remained the legal operator of the hotel, which it rebranded as Five Palm Jumeirah Dubai.

In 2013, Viceroy entered into a 30-year agreement with Five Holdings to manage a luxury hotel on the Palm Jumeirah Island in Dubai. 

On June 19, Five dramatically seized back control of the hotel, terminating the contract with Viceroy and changing all of the hotel signs overnight from the Viceroy Palm Jumeirah Dubai to Five Palm Jumeirah Dubai, prompting Viceroy to take legal action.

On September 7, Five Holdings and affiliated parties filed a counter lawsuit against Viceroy in Los Angeles alleging multiple counts of financial fraud and mismanagement against the hotel group.

Since then, Viceroy said Mulchandani has refused to abide by the terms of the DIFC Court’s injunction, in defiance of both the DIFC and Dubai courts.

"We are pleased that the Los Angeles Superior Court held that this lawsuit has absolutely no merit," a spokesman for Viceroy said. 

“In Dubai, we intend to continue to take all steps necessary to ensure the DIFC Court’s injunction is finally implemented, and we are confident that with the assistance of the local authorities in Dubai, Viceroy will ultimately be reinstated as the manager of the Viceroy Palm Jumeirah Dubai.”

Steven A Marenberg from Five Holding's lawyers, Irel & Manella, said: "We are pleased to inform you that the Los Angeles Superior Court has dismissed all of Viceroy’s claims against FIVE for fraud, extortion, conversion and unfair competition, finding that Viceroy has failed to state any of their claims against FIVE or its officers or directors.

"We are advised by you that Five Hotel FZCO became aware of the press release issued by Viceroy Hotel Group on 14 March 2018 and would like to state that it is the legal operator of the hotel pursuant to licenses issued by all the concerned authorities in the Emirate of Dubai. We are further advised that there are no outstanding judicial orders of any nature against Five Hotel FZCO whether from Dubai Courts or the DIFC Courts."

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Last Updated: Wed 14 Mar 2018 04:23 PM GST

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