Trump's First International Hotel Does Not Want to Be Associated With the Trump Name
Panama City is joining Toronto and New York City in wanting out of the Trump family.
Trump International Hotel in Panama has become the latest property to attempt to distance itself from U.S. President Donald Trump.
The hotel, currently managed by the Trump Organization, is attempting to fire the current management and to scrub the Trump name from its premises, Associated Press reported.
The Panama hotel had made previous attempts to do so, but a recent change in shareholders served as the catalyst. Investment firm Ithaca Capital Partners of Miami, Florida bought 202 remaining unsold condos along with the property's restaurants and conference room in August, becoming the single majority shareholder, according to AP.
While the firm at first appeared ready to work with Trump, their attitude has changed. The Trump Organization refuses to go quietly on the issue, saying that any attempt to change management would be a breach of contract. The Panama property was the Trump Organization's first completed international hotel.
"Not only do we have a valid, binding and enforceable long-term management agreement, but any suggestion that the hotel is not performing up to expectations is belied by the actual facts," the Trump Organization said in a statement.
Research from an independent third party, as well as accounts from condo owners at the property contradict the Trump Organization’s assertion that the hotel is performing well. Room rates at the Panama City hotel have plunged by more than 30 percent since January, FairFX, a London-based provider of travel-currency services, told Bloomberg. The owner of a penthouse condo told AP that he had only seen a 30 percent occupancy rate in recent months, and other owners said their occupancies were so low they couldn't even afford unit maintenance.
The Panama City property is following in the path of Trump hotels in New York City's Soho and another one in Toronto that have sought to extract themselves from a relationship with the Trump name and/or family.