I always wanted to go and check this place out, but not for $250-400 dollars a night. If they needed money they should have done a Groupon like the Fairmont in SF…


credit: Tiffany Kary- Bloomberg News


The Claremont Hotel Club & Spa, a symbol of Bay Area luxury for nearly a century, was one of five high-end resorts filing for bankruptcy on Tuesday, following an ill-fated acquisition by Morgan Stanley in 2007.

The hotels, which include Hawaii’s Grand Wailea Resort and the Club at PGA West in Southern California, took the step after lenders seized them from Morgan Stanley’s real estate funds. The plan is to keep operating the properties during bankruptcy.

The move is the latest shakeup at the Claremont, which once served as a residential hotel, convention hall and concert venue for the likes of Count Basie and Louis Armstrong. Now marketed as a resort and spa, it has suffered in recent years from a slump in tourism and luxury spending. Rooms can go for more than $400, putting it out of reach of budget travelers.

Morgan Stanley acquired the group of hotels four years ago for $6.6 billion – along with three other resorts that aren’t filing for bankruptcy – in a bid to bolster the Wall Street firm’s real estate holdings.

At the time, luxury properties were fetching record prices and tourism was thriving. When the lodging industry tanked during the recession, the investment soured. Debt of $1.5 billion came due Tuesday, prompting a foreclosure of the properties.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/02/01/BU9K1HHEPP.DTL#ixzz1CqZC1ARo