Hotels & Resorts
Gaylord’s Largest Shareholder Won’t Approve Marriott Deal
TRT Holdings—which owns a 21.8% stake in Gaylord Entertainment Co., making it the company’s largest shareholder—said it plans to vote against Marriott International’s acquisition of Gaylord’s hotel brand. The Texas holding company, which also owns the Omni Hotels and Gold’s Gym chains, issued an open letter to Gaylord stockholders on Tuesday, saying it does not believe the $210 million deal is in their best interest. The plan would give Marriott control of Gaylord Hotel’s four convention resorts in Tennessee, Florida, Texas and Maryland.
TRT’s statement alleges that the deal is biased in favor of Marriott and was poorly negotiated. Although Gaylord would continue to own the buildings as a real-estate investment trust, the letter says the company would be unable to sell the properties without Marriott’s approval or terminate the management agreement, citing Marriott’s legal tussle over the former Waikiki Edition hotel as a cautionary example. Other objections raised include concerns about the reorganized Gaylord’s overhead expenses and the length of the agreement, which has the potential to span 65 years. TRT proposes that Gaylord should continue to operate as it does currently while streamlining operations and focusing on growth. Gaylord responded the following day, saying that TRT’s letter contains several inaccuracies and omissions, and it intends to refute each item in a future, detailed statement. hotelnewsnow.com