Hotels & Resorts
Gaylord Shareholders Approve Marriott Deal
It’s finally official: Gaylord Entertainment Co. will sell its hotel brand and turn itself into a real-estate investment trust (REIT). At a meeting Tuesday morning, shareholders passed the plan with 85% approval, casting more than 38 million votes. Gaylord will be renamed Ryman Hospitality Properties Inc. and expects to begin operations as a REIT in January. Marriott International will pay $210 million to take control of four Gaylord convention resorts in Tennessee, Texas, Maryland and Florida, though the REIT will retain ownership.
The agreement came after several months of uncertainty, as Gaylord’s two largest shareholders balked at the deal. The largest, TRT Holdings, eventually agreed to support the deal after working out a plan to sell its 22% stake in the company. The other, GAMCO Investors Inc., announced this month that it would vote its 13% stake against the deal. tennessean.com