|By Rick Stouffer, The Pittsburgh
Tribune-ReviewMcClatchy-Tribune Regional News
October 28, 2009 --A Florida group is negotiating to become part of a new ownership group for the financially troubled Pittsburgh Hilton Hotel.
Shubh Hotels LLC has been talking for several months with the Related Group of Miami, said Sam Williamson, Western Pennsylvania director for the Unite Here's Pennsylvania Joint Board. United Here represents about 200 employees at the Hilton.
"We know that the Related Group has been negotiating to become part of the Hilton ownership for the last several months," Williamson said Tuesday. "It's a very complicated deal, and the various new ownership partners have changed over time."
Williamson said he has had conversations with executives of the Related Group, which declined to comment for this article.
Related, one of South Florida's largest developers, is known for lavish hotel developments. One of its partners is real estate mogul Donald Trump, who is involved with three Florida condo projects with Related, according to the Miami company's Web site.
Shubh Hotels of Boca Raton, Fla, acquired the Hilton for $28 million in May 2006 and almost immediately ran into financial problems.
Youngstown Design Co. last week filed a $399,320 judgment in Allegheny County against Shubh because the company failed to pay for design plans for a $25 million renovation of the Downtown landmark.
Work on the project stopped in May when the prime contractor, P.J. Dick Inc., walked off the job because the company owed it $317,273.
Shubh officials did not return telephone calls.
Rick Stouffer can be reached via e-mail or at 412-320-7853.
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