Gordon Ramsay and The Brick Hotel’s staff//All photos courtesy of Fox.
It’s been nearly a month since Fox’s primetime hotel renovation show, Hotel Hell, aired, featuring Newtown’s The Brick Hotel. Spotlighting the historic landmark’s struggles to succeed, expert hotelier Gordon Ramsay, perhaps better known for his antics in the kitchen, gave the opportunity to overhaul the hotel’s public spaces and two rooms.
Just two weeks after the episode aired, reports surfaced that the once grand hotel was for sale. A listing by SVN Commercial Real Estate had the historic building on the market for $6 million. Despite the listing, hotel owner Verindar Kuar refuted the rumors, leaving many confused, if not dubious.
Kuar was quick to clear up the misunderstanding, criticizing her time on the show, saying producers portrayed her and her hotel poorly. “It’s not for sale or lease or anything right now. That was a big mistake,” she says, claiming that the real estate company misunderstood her attempts to simply find an operating partner, not relinquish her ownership. “[The claim] is not valid. I’m the owner. I’m not selling it, I’m not leasing it,” she insists.
Her hotel’s reputation, Kuar believes, may have been inextricably damaged within the community, saying her business wasn’t accurately portrayed. Instead of positive attention, the hotel appearing on the show “damaged [the hotel] for sure,” she says.
The Brick Hotel’s staff, with Kuar at the helm, is making efforts to move forward despite the negative press. “We are going to do some renovations,” she says. To help boost the image, Kuar also says she’ll be focusing on more promotion. “We were very passive in our marketing and we have taken that into account.”
The listing by SVN, which lauded the hotel as the “pride of the town” and having “amazing potential,” has since been removed from its site. Kuar still eventually aims to bring someone in to help her and her son, a co-owner, operate the business and move away from its recently skewered reputation. “We want somebody who will come and help us out moving forward,” she says, still insisting the hotel is “doing great.”
Despite those efforts, recent guest reviews on sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor remain mostly negative.
Whether the hotel can overcome this most recent ordeal remains to be seen.
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