Luxury management company Viceroy Hotel Group has filed legal claims in California against Dubai-based businessman Kabir Mulchandani for ousting the company from its newly opened property, the Viceroy Palm Jumeirah Hotel Dubai.
In a written statement the company said it is seeking compensation and entities Mulchandani controls for damage caused to the brand. Allegations by Viceroy against Mulchandani include fraud, extortion, conversion, and unfair business practices.
Mulchandani is the CEO of Five Holdings, and claims that the reason for the takeover is due to mismanagement by Viceroy, according to Gulf Business. He announced the takeover June 19, saying the property had been rebranded Five Palm Jumeirah Dubai.
Arabian Business reported that all hotel signs were changed overnight from Viceroy Palm Jumeirah Dubai to Five Palm Jumeirah Dubai.
Viceroy argued that the hotel management contract had been breached, which led to an injunction in the Dubai court on June 22 ordering that Viceroy should be reinstated as the hotel manager.
The injunction was ignored, and Five has since maintained management of the property, Viceroy claims.
The new cross-complaint alleges Mulchandans decided to leverage Viceroy's hotel management expertise in opening the hotel, which he followed by evicting Viceroy from its role as exclusive hotel manager. It further details how he allegedly created a false record of accounting-related accusations in an attempt to both justify Viceroy's eviction after the fact and extort a settlement.
"Viceroy was wrongfully ousted from its role as the exclusive manager of the Hotel on Palm Jumeirah in Dubai by Kabir Mulchandani," Bill Walshe, said the CEO of Viceroy Hotel Group in a written statement. "Having filed a baseless suit in Los Angeles, Mulchandani and the companies he controls will now be forced to answer for their wrongdoing in Los Angeles and the UAE."
Two weeks after the injunction was issued, Walshe said in a written statement that the company maintains its position that it has always been and remains the manager of the property.
According to Arabian Business, a hearing in this case has been scheduled for January 22, 2018, at the Los Angeles Superior Court.