Posted by: Lister | November 20, 2007

Caledonian Operating Company

Jews Sans Frontieres has a post regarding the Scottish Palestine Solidarity protest outside the Caledonian Hotel. The SPS has been informed by lawyers for the Caledonian Operating Company, that the latter is not Israeli owned. The actual phrase used is:

Further to your protest over the weekend opposite the Caledonian Hilton in Edinburgh and your proposed subsequent protest, we write to you on behalf of our client The Caledonian Operating Company Limited (the “Company”), which is owner of the Caledonian Hilton Edinburgh Hotel (the “Hotel”), to inform you that the Company is incorporated in England and Wales and has no Israeli shareholders.

Your protest outside the Hotel accompanied by the type of allegations as circulated in your leaflets are incredibly damaging to the Hotel’s reputation and its business. We believe that you may have engaged in this campaign under a false assumption that the Hotel was bought by an Israeli property group. There were some newspaper reports suggesting this to be the case. In fact the deal never happened and the Hotel was bought, as we say above, by our client. For the moment, we are prepared to assume that our client’s business has been included in your campaign by mistake.

Here are the news reports. Landmark city hotel changes hands for £51.7m — which confirms the sale to the Caledonian Operating Company.

THE SALE of one of the Capital’s most prestigious hotels has been completed.

The Caledonian Operating Company – backed by HBoS – has completed a £51.7 million deal for the five-star Caledonian Hotel.

The News reported earlier this week that the new company – a consortium of Israeli investors – was on a verge of a deal.

And here is the earlier report: Buyers step in with £50m for landmark Capital hotel:

ONE of the Capital’s most prestigious hotels is set to be sold for more than £50 million.

The Caledonian Hotel was put up for sale in October last year and now a consortium of Israeli investors – called the Caledonian Operating Company – backed by HBoS are on the verge of completing a deal for the five-star hotel.

See the JSF post for the SPS’s reply (Or their homepage for the pdf). They want the newspapers to confirm their error before they believe the claim that COC is not Israeli owned.

You claim in your letter to us that labelling the hotel as Israeli-owned (“the type of allegations as circulated in your leaflets”) is “incredibly damaging to the hotel and its business.” We concede that this is so, and are, therefore, doubly perplexed as to why your client felt no inclination over a period of three months to clean up its image by responding to the string of press stories asserting such Israeli ownership.

The calls for boycott, and the fear of boycott, seems to be growing.


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