More on the Lexington and First Bank

A lawyer for First Bank, which foreclosed on the Lexington Plaza Waterfront Hotel and acquired it this morning, said in a telephone call to Mayor Ann Johnston today that the bank intends to sell the property and have it reopened by a “leading brand,” Johnston said.


The attorney, Steven Casselberry, has not returned telephone calls this week from The Record.


Johnston said, “I think we should know very quickly, within the next few days.”


Publicly the bank was less committed. Peggy Lents, a spokeswoman, said in an e-mail, “We understand that there are many questions about the future direction of the Lexington Hotel. As we have just acquired the hotel, we are now going to spend some time giving careful consideration to the options before us.”


The announcement last week that the hotel would close brought several telephone calls from hotel brokers and operators trying to reach the bank. Many of them – hundreds of them, a bank official said – called First Bank of Missouri, not First Bank, a Missouri corporation.


They are different, not only because First Bank of Missouri is willing to answer the phone.


Stephen Roweton, senior vice president and chief lending officer at First Bank of Missouri, said brokers, would-be buyers and venders are calling. These are people with silverware, carpets and chairs to sell.


Hotel Vice President Jeroen Gerrese was on hand for the auction. He talked with The Record’s Ian Hill:


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