Billionaire John Pritzker, the son of the late founder of the Hyatt Hotels Corp. chain, bought the 50 percent of closely held Commune Hotels and Resorts that he didn’t already own for an undisclosed amount.
Through his private-equity firm Geolo Capital, Pritzker purchased the stake from the Pomeranc brothers, Jason, Michael and Lawrence, who had formed a joint venture with Pritzker in October 2011. The three contributed hotels from their Thompson chain, founded by the brothers in 2001, to the partnership.
Pritzker is taking over six Thompson properties including two in New York, the Hollywood Roosevelt in Los Angeles and the Belgraves in London, as well as the Thompson brand name. Not included in the deal are 60 Thompson, Thompson LES and 6 Columbus in New York; Hotel Victor in Miami Beach; and the Thompson Beverly Hills. Thompson LES and Thompson Beverly Hills will change their names under the brand-acquisition agreement.
Over the past five months, Pritzker has assembled a new management team for Commune, which aside from the Thompson hotels also includes 27 Joie de Vivre boutique properties and a new “value-conscious” brand known as Tommie. Two Tommie-branded properties are under development in New York.
The team includes Chief Information Officer Mike Blake, who previously held the same position at Hyatt; Phil Keb, executive vice president of development; Rick Colangelo, executive vice president of operations, who was formerly at Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant Group LLC; Jorge Trevino, executive vice president of brand operations; and Greg Smith, an executive vice president who will oversee human resources training and recruitment.
Pritzker in November hired Niki Leondakis, who had been at Kimpton for 19 years, as chief executive officer of Commune Hotels.
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