| NEW YORK, July 28
NEW YORK, July 28 A federal judge on Monday
dismissed a lawsuit filed against Marriott International Inc
, which had blamed the hospitality company for the
bankruptcy of a hotel on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.
The plaintiff, Madison 92nd Street Associates LLC, accused
Marriott and a labor organization of conspiring to control which
Marriott-branded hotels unionized.
The lawsuit said that as a result of the conspiracy, workers
at a Marriott hotel on 92nd Street in Manhattan unionized, which
led to the property's poor financial performance and ultimately
forced the hotel into bankruptcy in 2011, five years after it
U.S. District Judge Colleen McMahon of Manhattan issued an
order on Monday dismissing the lawsuit, which had sought in
excess of $400 million in damages.
Madison 92nd Street Associates contended that in 2002 it was
fraudulently induced to enter an agreement giving Marriott
affiliate Courtyard Management Corp the rights to manage
Madison's hotel under the Courtyard name.
Madison chose Marriott because of the assurance it received
from Marriott that it was a non-union company and that Courtyard
would employ a non-union workforce at the hotel, according to
Madison said that at the time it had entered into the
management agreement, Marriott was secretly negotiating with the
New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council, AFL-CIO, the union for
hotel workers in the metropolitan New York City area and the
region that includes Albany, the state capital.
Those talks, according to the lawsuit, led to a deal in
which Marriott agreed to help the union organize at certain
Marriott-branded hotels, including the 92nd Street hotel, in
exchange for not doing so at Marriott's flagship properties in
In her order on Monday, McMahon wrote that the conspiracy
cited by the plaintiff was not what had locked Madison into
non-union labor. Rather, according to McMahon, it was the
original management agreement between Madison and Marriott,
which gave Marriott "absolute discretion with respect to all
personnel employed at the Hotel."
A representative of Madison 92nd Street Associates did not
immediately return a call seeking comment.
The case is Madison 92nd Street Associates, LLC v. Marriott
International, Inc, U.S. District Court, Southern District of
New York, No. 13-0291.
(Reporting by Andrew Longstreth; Editing by Jan Paschal)