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Report: Qatari state-owned fund buying NYC's Plaza Hotel for US$600M

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Report: Qatari state-owned fund buying NYC's Plaza Hotel for US$600M

Qatar's state-owned Katara Holding struck a deal to acquire the Plaza Hotel in Midtown Manhattan, N.Y., for approximately US$600 million, Reuters reported, citing a source familiar with the transaction.

The unnamed source told the news agency that the deal includes the acquisition of a 75% stake from Indian business group Sahara India Pariwar Ltd.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the buyer also acquired the 25% minority stake held by New York real-estate investor Ashkenazy Acquisition Corp. and Saudi Prince al-Waleed bin Talal's Kingdom Holding Co. The minority owners had exercised a right of first refusal in May to match a US$600 million earlier bid for the hotel from Shahal Khan, founder of White City Ventures and the Chimera Group, and Kamran Hakim of the Hakim Organization.

The deal closed July 2 and included the hotel's 228 guestrooms and retail space, the Journal reported, citing people familiar with the transaction.

The Journal noted that it is unclear why the minority owners did not follow through on their planned acquisition or whether they were able to raise the required funds. It was recently reported that Ashkenazy and Kingdom were granted an extension by Sahara Group to close on the deal after coming close to missing a deadline.

Katara and Sahara could not be immediately reached for a comment, Reuters added.

Representatives of Ashkenazy, Katara and Kingdom did not respond to requests for comment, the Journal noted.