Limelight Hotel Aspen billing dispute in arbitration
The messy seven-figure billing battle over the renovated Limelight Hotel Aspen has gone to arbitration.
Pitkin County District Judge Denise Lynch last month granted a pause in the litigation concerning more than $3.4 million in unsettled bills stemming from Aspen Skiing Co.’s 2021 renovation of the 126-guestroom/suite hotel on 355 South Monarch St.
Court records show the remaining businesses in the dispute — Skico, Skico’s Limelight Hotel Aspen, Las Vegas-based PWI Construction, and Georgia-based GAR Mechanical — recently agreed to what’s called a “stay” in legal-speak.
Messages seeking updates on the arbitration were not returned Friday. Skico does not comment on active lawsuits.
In court filings, lawyers for PWI, which Skico hired as general contractor on the renovation work, cited mandatory arbitration clauses as the impetus for the pause. Those clauses are included in both PWI’s interior and exterior renovation contracts with Skico, according to court pleadings by PWI’s lawyers.
Skico hired PWI in May 2021 to supervise the interior renovations hired it in October 2021 to oversee the hotel’s exterior renovations.
Unlike mediation, where the parties can negotiate a compromise or settlement, “a neutral, trained arbitrator serves as a judge who is responsible for resolving the dispute,” according to Harvard Law School’s website. “Mediation is appealing because it allows parties to reach a collaborative settlement, but it could end in impasse. Arbitration, on the other hand, can wrap up a dispute conclusively, but it doesn’t give disputants much say in the outcome.”
Arbitration is the latest attempt to untangle what has amounted to three lawsuits and nine mechanics liens in connection to billing and performance agreements over the renovation project. The first lien was filed in February 2022 and other actions followed. Following the renovations, Limelight re-opened in December 2021.
“Limelight and ASC (Skico) failed to pay PWI approximately $3,430,062.07 of the amounts owed pursuant to the Interior and Exterior Renovation Contracts,” PWI lawyers wrote in a February filing. “Some, but not all, of this money was owed to subcontractors hired by PWI for work to be performed at the Property. Because PWI did not receive payment, it could not pay its subcontractors. PWI and numerous subcontractors, vendors and suppliers recorded mechanic’s liens as a result of Limelight and/or ASC’s non-payments.”
The lawsuits have been consolidated.
In a nutshell, the remaining disputes are in arbitration.
- GAR Mechanical has claims of breach of contract against PWI;
- PWI has alleged breach of contract against GAR on the contention that the subcontractor’s work was below par;
- PWI also has claims against Skico and Limelight for nonpayment.
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