Pressure Mounting Against Chateau Marmont Owner Andre Balazs In the Wake Of Discrimination Lawsuits
The Hollywood Reporter reports that a new lawsuit against Chateau Marmont owner Andre Balazs has been filed by by his business partners at Mercer in Manhattan. The lawsuit asks that Balazs be removed as Managing Director of the storied Mercer Hotel, and prohibited from calling himself an "owner" of the Mercer based on his gross misconduct in running the Chateau.
The suit alleges that the “widespread, negative press regarding Balazs’ personal life combined with the very public allegations of discrimination, abuse, misconduct and neglectful management . . . at ‘sister hotel’ Chateau Marmont has been incredibly harmful to the [Mercer] as a result of its association with Balazs….”
On January 27, 2021, Teukolsky Law filed a race discrimination and sex harassment lawsuit against Chateau Marmont on behalf of Thomasina Gross, an African-American woman who formerly worked as an events server. The complaint alleges that Ms. Gross was repeatedly passed over for promotions in favor of white employees and sexually harassed by guests despite complaints to management. The Chateau has required Ms. Gross to dismiss her lawsuit and file her claims in arbitration, a non-public proceeding with no jury and limited discovery rights. Through her attorneys, Ms. Gross asked the Chateau to reconsider its request to move the case to arbitration so that the public could follow the proceedings, but the Chateau refused. The case is now pending in private arbitration.
Lauren Teukolsky is the founder and owner of Teukolsky Law, A Professional Corporation.