Hotelier pays to settle nightclub dispute


Nightlife entrepreneur Rande Gerber and hotelier Ian Schrager have ended nearly a year of legal wrangling with a settlement that releases Gerber from his commitments with Schrager, and has Schrager paying more than $1 million.

‘I couldn’t be more pleased with the legal outcome of this case,’ said Gerber. ‘This settlement provides me the freedom to continue to aggressively grow Midnight Oil both in the United States and abroad, through our association with Starwood hotels and its W brands, one of the fastest growing upscale hotel brands in the world.’
By severing ties with Schrager, Gerber is free to expand his nightlife empire in W Hotel’s rapidly growing portfolio of style hotels. Midnight Oil currently operates Whiskey Blue at the W New York and the W New Orleans and just opened Whiskey Park at The Boston Park Plaza. Midnight Oil will also resume operating Wetbar at the W New York-The Court and will open Underbar at the W New York-Union Square in January 2001.
Further, Midnight Oil and Gerber are reviewing plans to open new bars at W Los Angeles-Westwood, W New York-The Tuscany, W New York-Times Square, W Miami-South Beach, W New Orleans-French Quarter and W Chicago-City Center. Gerber’s other bars include Whiskey Park in New York City, Whiskey Los Angeles, Whiskey Bar & Grill in Chicago and Whiskey Rocks at The St. Regis Aspen, another Starwood property.‘
In just under two years, W Hotels has opened 13 hotels, and their expansion plan is very aggressive,’ said Gerber. ‘The explosive growth of W, combined with the brand’s commitment to offer chic, elegant nightlife, and Starwood’s investment in Midnight Oil, made it a smart business decision to part ways with Schrager.’

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