Hotel Online  Special Report

Horst Schulze Named In Lawsuit; Accusations
of Deception in Connection with the Purchase
of London's Lanesborough Hotel


ATLANTA - July 26, 2005 -- Last weekend, Horst Schulze - the world-famous hotel proprietor and longtime president of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company - and his West Paces Hotel Group were named in an Atlanta, Georgia, lawsuit seeking damages and punitive damages in the amount of tens of millions of dollars (Civil Action File Number 2005CV / 03868 : Superior Court of Fulton County)

Two corporations, the Al Fahim Group (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates) and Oppenheimer Investments AG (Solothurn, Switzerland), accuse Schulze and his two business partners of intending to swindle them out of a sales commission in the amount of more than 10 million British pounds in connection with the planned purchase of London's luxurious Lanesborough Hotel, and their shares in the hotel subsequent to the acquisition.

According to statements, Schulze commissioned the Al Fahim Group and Oppenheimer Investments AG to enter into sales negotiations with the owners of the Lanesborough, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. After his severance from the Ritz-Carlton founder W. B. Johnson at the end of 2002, Schulze and his West Paces Hotel Group had pursued this matter independently in order to establish a new worldwide brand of top luxury hotels through the Lanesborough. Included in the agreement were a fee of 240,000 Euros, a share investment for both corporations, and a closing commission of 10 million British pounds, which would have been payable after the deal's conclusion.

After one and a half years and difficult negotiations, the Lanesborough's owners, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), actually agreed to sell the hotel to Schulze's company. Yet just before signing, Schulze abruptly withdrew from the closing, claiming sudden financial difficulties.

However, according to information received, Schulze was said to be continuing his dealings with the Lanesborough owners through a third party, actually basing this on the conditions negotiated by Al Fahim and Oppenheimer. Thus Schulze would have broken off the originally planned and prepared signing of the deal on specious grounds only to avoid paying the agreed-upon commission, which would justify a lawsuit for damages and punitive damages.


Al Fahim Group
wordstatt GmbH
Dagmar Metzger
+49 (0)172-8312173

Also See: Horst Schulze Believes He Can Do It Again with a New Luxury Hotel Chain / October 2002
Horst Schulze's West Paces Hotel Group Wins Management Contract for 120 room Hotel On Campus of University of Illinois / June 2005

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