26 October, Il Messaggero
Asked 130 million for the failed agreement on the sale of the former Zecca headquarters
The amount asked by Residenza Immobiliare 2004 is insane, 130 million euro. The company is the subsidiary controlled by Cdp Immobiliare and participated by Fingem of the Fratini family. If Cdp wins the cause, the extra luxury hotel chain Four Season, featuring partners such as Bill Gates and the Saudi Prince Al Waleed Bin Talal, will have to pay.
Why is Cdp asking this maxi compensation? The story starts from a letter of intention that Residenza Immobiliare 2004 signed almost 6 years ago with the luxury hotel chain for the development and management of a five-star hotel in the Poligrafico Palace in Via Verdi in Rome, a historical building that was once the headquarter of Zecca (State Institute of Printing and Minting), where the old lire were printed. That letter of intent became ineffective, hence with no following. According to the Cdp legal advisors (represented by the firm Gianni Origoni), there is a pre-contractual liability from the Four Season side (represented legally by the firm Lombardi Molinari Segni) as well as a contractual liability for the failed agreement. The damages originating from the precontractual liabilities would amount to 40 million, while the contractual liabilities would be 90 million.
The case is discussed in Rome and the first hearing took place a couple of weeks ago. The sentence is supposed to come soon. Also because, in the meanwhile, Residenza Immobiliare, owner of the historic property in Piazza Verdi, has signed another letter of intent for the development and management of an extra luxury hotel in a part of the building. The new agreement was signed a couple of years ago with the hotel chain Rosewood, controlled by New World China Land Ltd.
The new project
The requalification project involving the former Zecca headquarters sees the implementation of an extra luxury hotel for a total of 200 rooms, featuring a conference centre, restaurants, swimming pools, and spas. The remaining part of the building will be destined to offices and, according to some rumours, it might be used again by Zecca. The contract between Residenza Immobiliare and Rosewood should be signed in a few weeks. But there is some news. In fact, the hospitality group controlled by the Cheng family advanced the proposal of also buying the part of the building destined to become a hotel (half of the whole building). Starting from the signing of the contract, Residenza Immobiliare will have one month to accept or decline the offer, which is supposed to be for a significant amount, considering that the vehicle company that holds the asset has a 200 million euro debt towards banks.
Source: Il Messaggero
Translator: Cristina Ambrosi