Barceló pays fine to back out of 20 UK leases

As a result of difficult operating conditions and expensive rents, Barceló Group, Palma de Majorca, Spain, has agreed to pay a £20.25 million (US$32 million) penalty to terminate leases signed in 2007 with Puma Hotels, London, to operate 20 hotels in the U.K.

Puma will take over operations of the predominantly 4-star portfolio under its legacy Paramount Hotels brand, which includes the Lygon Arms in Worcestershire, The Imperial in Torquay and The Majestic in Harrogate, and has appointed Chardon Management to assist in management.

Puma Hotels has negotiated an agreement with its bankers to extend its debt facility until the end of 2013.