New management officially takes over Crowne Plaza Hotel in Pittsfield

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PITTSFIELD The Crowne Plaza Hotel is officially under new ownership.

Anil K. Sachdev, of East Elmhurst, N.Y., who bid $1.1 million for the 14-story lodging establishment at a foreclosure auction in April, became the hotel's official owner this week when a deed signifying his ownership was filed with the Middle Berkshire Registry of Deeds in Pittsfield. Under the terms of the auction, the sale was required to close within 40 days. No mortgage document has been filed.

The hotel will be run by Berkshire Hospitality Group LLC of Brooklyn, N.Y., according to papers filed with the Secretary of State's Office. Sachdev is listed as both the entity's manager and signatory on those documents.

As the new owner, Berkshire Hospitality Group is responsible for the $337,067 in outstanding property and utility taxes owed to the city of Pittsfield by the hotel's former owners, Berkshire Common Corp. and Shireberk Corp.

Sachdev, who owns hotels in both New York and Vermont, could not be reached for comment.

In April, Sachdev said he planned to establish a "high-end hotel" at the 3.2-acre site in the heart of downtown Pittsfield, and would pursue an affiliation with Radisson Hotels, a subsidiary of the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, one of the world's largest hotel chains. The Crowne Plaza, a subsidiary of the InterContinental Hotels Group, is pulling the affiliation it has had with the 47-year-old hotel since 1998, according to Sachdev.

Santander Bank of Boston foreclosed on the hotel's $16.5 million mortgage in January after the joint holders of the note, Berkshire Common Corp. and Shireberk Corp., had failed to keep up with the payments. Both entities were dissolved by the state of Massachusetts in June 2016 after they failed to file annual reports with the state for four years. The president of both those corporations, the late Eugene Weiss, of Schenectady, N.Y., died in 2014.

Ladder Capital Finance LLC of New York City, which owns BJ's Wholesale Club in Pittsfield, bid $3.95 million for the Crowne Plaza at a foreclosure auction in February, but later defaulted on the sale.

It's not clear why Ladder Capital defaulted, but a real estate official who spoke to The Eagle in March under the condition of anonymity calculated that an investment in the $20 million range would be needed to fully restore the property.

Sachdev, who also participated in the first auction, submitted the winning bid when a second auction took place in April.

Constructed in 1970, the Crowne Plaza contains two restaurants, a ballroom, a four-level, 325 space parking garage, an indoor pool, and 12,000 square feet of meeting space.

The hotel underwent about $1 million in renovations in 1997-98 when the franchise changed from Hilton to the Crowne Plaza. The InterContinental Hotels Group requires its properties to be upgraded each decade.

Weiss purchased the hotel for $10.3 million from the Berkshire Life Insurance Co. in 1986.

Reach Business Editor Tony Dobrowolski at 413 496-6224.


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