Trump's Company Cuts Ties To NYC Hotel President Trump's company says it's severing its contract with the Trump SoHo, a New York City condo hotel that has struggled to find buyers.
NPR logo

Trump's Company Cuts Ties To NYC Hotel

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/566213191/566213192" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Trump's Company Cuts Ties To NYC Hotel

Trump's Company Cuts Ties To NYC Hotel

Trump's Company Cuts Ties To NYC Hotel

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/566213191/566213192" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

President Trump's company says it's severing its contract with the Trump SoHo, a New York City condo hotel that has struggled to find buyers.

NOEL KING, HOST:

President Trump's business interests are in the news today. Trump's company says it's cutting ties with the Trump SoHo. That's a condo hotel in New York that's struggled for years to find customers. NPR's Jim Zarroli has the story.

JIM ZARROLI, BYLINE: The construction of the 46-story Trump SoHo was unveiled with great fanfare by Trump himself on "The Apprentice" back in 2006.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: The other project is in New York City's trendiest neighborhood, SoHo. Here it is.

ZARROLI: Although the project bore his name, Trump didn't put any of his own money into it. Instead, he got paid a fee for the use of his name, and the Trump organization managed the property. But the Trump SoHo was troubled from the start. One of the developers, the Bayrock Group, was run by a Russian-born ex-convict who was accused by the U.S. government of having mafia ties. Like Trump projects in Azerbaijan and Toronto, the Trump SoHo's financing was murky. James Henry is a global justice fellow at Yale who has written about Trump's business ties.

JAMES HENRY: All of these projects were, you know, part of a more than $2 billion portfolio, where Trump was relying heavily on former Soviet Union capital flight to finance his projects.

ZARROLI: One Bayrock partner later sued the firm, accusing it of money laundering and tax evasion. Trump also settled a suit by condo buyers who said he had misrepresented how many of the building's units were sold. After the real estate crash, Bayrock was forced to sell most of the units. Since his election, there have been reports that Trump hotels have had to lower their room rates. And a restaurant at the Trump SoHo closed in April. Again, James Henry.

HENRY: Whether the Trump Organization made money is another question. They have received fees for their brand, but all the evidence is that the property has been economically kind of a failed project.

ZARROLI: The announcement yesterday means that the Trump Organization will no longer manage the SoHo property, but it's not clear whether his name will be removed from the building. Jim Zarroli, NPR News, New York.

Copyright © 2017 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at www.npr.org for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.