|By Doug Hanks, The Miami
HeraldMcClatchy-Tribune Business News
Feb. 13, 2007 - The Chicago developer behind Nicky Hilton's planned South Beach hotel is suing the celebrity socialite, claiming the 23-year-old reneged on deals to promote the project and another hotel in Chicago.
The lawsuit filed in federal court in Illinois reveals a bitter dispute between developer Robert Falor and Hilton, along with Hilton's manager, Paul Fisher. Falor claims Hilton and Fisher never signed a formal agreement to license his Breakwater and Edison hotels in South Beach as a "Nicky-O," a hotel brand Hilton hoped to launch nationwide.
Falor also claims his company subsidized a "lavish" lifestyle for Hilton and Fisher, including a Cadillac Escalade for Fisher, parties for Hilton and her friends and free plasma televisions for both of them.
Fisher and Hilton were not available for comment this morning.
This is the latest Falor business relationship to morph into a court fight. Falor, whose company also runs South Beach's Royal Palm hotel, has been sued by his partner in the Breakwater and two commercial real estate brokers who worked with him in other hotel deals. The Falor family's hotel company also faced litigation over management contracts for three South Florida hotels between 1999 and 2002.
The lawsuit claims Hilton never promoted a planned Nicky-O in Chicago. Her deal with the Falors for the South Beach Nicky-O, announced in July, received widespread media attention, including mentions on David Letterman's show and in People magazine.
The suit, which alleges breach of contract and deceptive business practices, does not seek a specific amount of damages. But it claims Falor's company, Robert Falor Investments, and another Falor firm, paid Hilton and Fisher more than $1 million in the ventures.
Copyright (c) 2007, The Miami Herald
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