I hadn’t paid much attention to the many stories about Hyatt’s refusal to financially involve itself in the proposed SKYWALKS MEMORIAL…
That all changed Sunday when I came across an absurd letter to the STAR.
Under the heading of "Hyatt Moral Debt" an Olathe woman wrote, "I am disgusted to learn that Hyatt Hotels Corp. will not be contributing to the Skywalk Memorial. They took money from Kansas Citians for 30 years, but when it came time to remember the 114 people killed and countless others injured or affected, they skip town."
Hold it right there.
Hyatt didn’t skip town. The owners of the hotel simply didn’t renew Hyatt’s management contract and reflagged it as a Sheraton managed property.
On top of that, Hyatt had no responsibility or blame in connection with the collapse of the skywalks. They weren’t the contractors on the construction. Yet for all these years since the disaster the company’s name has been wrongly tarnished with that infamous day at Crown Center.
It’s like me renting an apartment which later collapses onto the street and cars. Am I to blame?
No, it’s the apartment complex ownership’s and the developer’s responsibility.
The FCC would put the blame squarely on CBS’s shoulders.
Put yourself in Hyatt’s position.
They were simply the renters of the hotel. Yet they got their good name slammed for years. Lost their management contract—and now are being asked to contribute to a memorial that would continue to drag their name through the mud for years to come.
Thanks, but no thanks.
The hotel always has been and continues to be owned by Crown Center Redevelopment Corp.—the good folks who also give us those feel good Hallmark Cards.
So when the writer to the Star "challenges Kansas City to hold Hyatt responsible for leaving town without paying its moral debt," I say she’s way off base.
"Maybe when Hyatt tries to build again in Kansas City, public outrage will prevent them," she writes.
Why did the Star – which screens its letters carefully – even publish this one?
Well, to my knowlege Hyatt has never built here and problably never will. That, of course, wouldn’t prevent them from ever managing a hotel in the market again. Someone else’s hotel—just like they did at Crown Center.