Harlequin reassures the trade over investor concerns

Harlequin reassures the trade over investor concerns

Harlequin Hotels & Resorts has moved to reassure the trade after a newspaper claimed the company could be forced to stop trading this week.

The parent company of Buccament Bay in St Vincent and Blu in Saint Lucia said the hotels, which are popular with the trade, were operating as normal and continuing to take bookings.

Saturday's article in the Daily Mail claimed there were investors in the business who were unhappy with their return.

The newspaper said legal papers were being lodged at the High Court in Birmingham on Tuesday in an attempt to freeze the assets of Harlequin Property, which is the primary sales agent for Harlequin Hotels and Resorts, to recoup money for investors.

If successful, it claimed the company could be forced to cease trading on Friday.

A Harlequin spokesman said the story had originated from a "handful of investors" and added it had not been made aware of any papers being served to the court as of yesterday (Wednesday).

He said any application was "misconceived and likely to fail".

"In the unlikely event that a court granted the order, it would be limited only to the sum that the applicants claim, not the entire assets," he said.

The spokesman said the construction of H and the Merricks Resort in Barbados were progressing as planned.

He also denied media reports that the company was being investigated by the Serious Fraud Office.

"Harlequin has openly stated that it would be more than willing to cooperate with the SFO in relation to any enquiries they wish to make."

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