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Hospitality / Tourism

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Leisure Developments

Hospitality organizations – hotels, resorts, golf courses, condominium and time-share developments – face unique employment, real estate, tax, regulatory and contract issues. McNair’s lawyers know the hospitality business, and have experience with solutions to the everyday challenges our clients face throughout the Carolinas and the Southeast.

We negotiate service and management agreements, create and advise owner associations, and handle a range of other operational issues. That includes helping owners and operators buy and sell property, finance the deal, prepare governing documents, and then handle the tax, zoning, construction and environmental concerns. We also handle any controversies that arise, from resolving disputes regarding existing agreements to workouts of financially distressed properties.

Property Management

Developers and owners of resort properties – including luxury hotel properties – rely on McNair for help with their management needs. Whether your property is in our traditional coastal strongholds of Hilton Head, Charleston or Myrtle Beach, or in other growing destination areas, we can advise you on the full development process, including tax, land use and construction issues.

Once the development is complete, we handle food and beverage licensing, structure competitive rental, management, facility and employment agreements for you, and advise on the sale or lease of the property to others.

In addition, our lawyers represent a number of major commercial and residential owner and condominium associations. We understand the state statutes that govern the way that time-share and condominium developments are created and function. We help associations comply with their requirements, just as we help developers create and operate associations until control passes to the actual owners.

We counsel condominium and time-share developers on regulatory and contractual issues. If litigation is necessary, we represent them in disputes with contractors, governmental units and individual property owners over problems such as defect claims, deed restrictions, the amendment procedures for restrictions and eminent domain disputes.

Example of our Services
In an arrangement with few parallels in the hospitality industry, McNair has provided specialty property management services to a South Carolina condominium hotel. We advised the condominium association on buying out the original developer and setting up a management company that is completely operated by the Association. McNair represents the corporate entity that manages the property.

Development Approval

Our knowledge of and working relationships with development authorities throughout the Carolinas are the keys to providing hospitality developments with effective land use and zoning guidance. McNair lawyers are skilled at the political process that makes zoning regulation one of the biggest challenges facing resort and hospitality property developers, and we often secure the crucial approval of permits and zoning applications (including appeals) on a time sensitive basis.

We work with the municipal or county development and planning authorities that regulate the residential and commercial development process, as well as the county and municipal councils and zoning boards that create and enforce land use restrictions, and go before zoning boards and political authorities to demonstrate why development agreements, planned unit developments or rezoning are justified.

Example of our Services
Throughout the coastal areas of the Carolinas, developers of golf course, marina and resort properties rely on McNair’s working relationships with local zoning and planning boards to secure project approvals. Our lawyers were instrumental in securing the land use approvals for the original development of both Hilton Head and Kiawah Islands, and we continue to play major roles in advising developers on completing new projects there.

Golf Properties

We have advised on the land use, environmental, tax, construction and regulatory issues involved with establishing courses throughout the coastal resort areas of the Carolinas (including Hilton Head and Kiawah Islands and Myrtle Beach), and in other regions such as the Washington, DC area.

If you are involved in course development our lawyers will work with you from the earliest stage of the project to provide the necessary legal services, from drafting and negotiating purchase and sale agreements, to conducting due diligence. We’ll assist you in resolving issues so the project is completed on schedule and on budget.

Example of our Services
One of the most specialized aspects of our work on developing golf courses involves championship courses designated Tournament Players Clubs (TPC). TPC courses are both destination and private membership properties that must meet the demanding standards of the world’s best golfers. McNair works with developers of residential and other properties to ensure that they meet TPC development standards.

Property Disputes

Owners and developers of hospitality properties often face litigation and dispute resolution concerns. We not only advise these clients, but also homeowner and condominium associations when controversies arise. That includes disputes with investors, contractors, governmental units and individual property owners, often involving the interpretation and enforcing of contract terms, management agreements and deed restrictions.

Example of our Services
This bankruptcy dispute involved a highly technical controversy over the validity of a property lease. Our client, a multinational hospitality company, leased land for a resort development from one of the country’s largest pension trusts. The trust sought to void the lease by declaring bankruptcy – even though no debt and no creditors were involved – and arguing that, because our client allegedly had not properly recorded the lease, the lease should be set aside.

McNair argued that this was improper and unfair because it used the equitable power of the bankruptcy code as a sword rather than a shield, and because no creditors would benefit from the action. In the end, we successfully avoided the debtor’s attempts to reject our client’s ground lease.