Thursday, November 27, 2008

Ritz-Carlton to seek new Bali opportunity

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company will cease to manage The Ritz-Carlton in Jimbaran, Bali, after April 1 next year.

A spokesman for the company said , “Bali is a key market for The Ritz-Carlton and we will of course look to be back in the destination as soon as we find the right partner and the right location.”

The hotel's customers and marketing partners holding bookings after April 1 have been advised that while their reservations will be honored, the management of the hotel and its services will have no connection with Ritz-Carlton.

Balidiscovery.com said the announcement is almost certainly connected to a landmark ruling by a U.S. Federal Court earlier this year finding on behalf of KMS, the Indonesian owners of the Jimbaran resort, in their suit against Marriott - the owners of the Ritz-Carlton brand.

After a 14-day trial, Maryland jurors ruled that the 2006 opening of the Bulgari Resort, Bali - operated by Bulgari Spa with Marriott, represented a breach of a "non-competing" clause agreed between Ritz-Carlton with the Indonesian owners of the Bali property.

A subsequent ruling in the case by the Maryland Courts in April 2008 granted the Indonesian's owners request for declaratory relief and opened the way for Karang Mas Sejahtera (KMS) to, at its option, terminate its relationship with Ritz-Carlton.

The suit awarded US$10 million dollars in damages and legal expenses to the Indonesian owners to be paid by Marriott.

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