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The Plaza Hotel Is On The Sales Block

The Plaza Hotel in New York is closed amid the coronavirus.

The owners of the iconic Plaza Hotel overlooking Central Park have made their intentions of selling clear once again.

India-based Sahara Group, which purchased the property in 2012, has offered the building since 2015 while the company's founder and chairman, Subrata Roy, sat in jail for defrauding investors. But Sahara has retained the JLL Hotel and Hospitality Group to market the property, indicating a renewed seriousness to get a deal done, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Roy reportedly took meetings from his visitation room in jail regarding the Plaza Hotel, but left potential buyers frustrated, according to the WSJ. Last year, owners of the hotel's mortgage put the building up for auction, only to pull it back soon after. After Roy was released on parole in May 2016, a reported $325M offer from a group including Saudi royalty also fizzled out. 

The hotel's location and reputation allow it to have room rates among the highest in the city, which could mean a sale price to match. But the Waldorf Astoria's record sale price of nearly $2B in 2015 would be tough to meet as the market for Manhattan hotels has declined since.

Though the average hotel sale price in the first half of this year has been $515K per room in New York, some estimate that the Plaza will be looking for offers in the neighborhood of $2M per room. Due to the fact that previous owners have spun off some rooms as occupant-owned condos, meeting such a price would give the Plaza a $560M price tag.

Though the hotel once owned by Donald Trump will likely not touch the Waldorf Astoria's overall price record, how much it does fetch could be a fascinating referendum on the value of flagship, historic hotel property in New York.