Lebanon Businessnews News

Fight boils over
Quality Inn in Tripoli
Dispute over control of the hotel
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Rachid Karami International Fair (RKIF) has decided to retake control of Quality Inn Hotel in Tripoli, which is managed by Services and Development.

RKIF wanted to return the hotel to its control, because the Furnish, Operate and Transfer (F.O.T) contract with Services and Development ended in 2017, according to Akram Oueida, Chairman of RKIF. “Services and Development hasn’t paid its dues since 2014, which are $3.3 million,” Oueida said.

The four-star hotel, which has 112 rooms, was leased to Services and Development, through an FOT contract for 16 years starting in 2001, according to documents supplied by Sultan Harba, Chairman of Services and Development. Harba also owns Connexion.

RKIF, which is under the authority of The Ministry of Economy and Trade (MoET), got the ministry’s approval to evict the Services and Development in 2018, giving the company one month to vacate the premises.

The decision was implemented on Tuesday, but Harba returned to the hotel and retook it by force, according to Oueida.

“The State plans to exercise its rights and authority in this matter. We will follow up soon on this issue,” said Mansour Bteich, Minister of Economy and Trade.

Harba accused RKIF of breach of contract. “We weren’t paying our dues because RKIF was not carrying out the hotel’s maintenance as agreed,” Harba said. The contract additionally stipulates that RKIF was supposed to organize three international exhibitions per year in order to attract crowds, but they didn’t, Harba said.

Harba seeks additional six years in compensation, accusing RKIF of breaching the contract.
Reported by Rania Ghanem
Date Posted: Apr 05, 2019
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