Hotel auction delayed

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Foreclosure > Selvage says there are two potential buyers

By John Severance

The Los Alamos National Bank has postponed a foreclosure auction of the Hilltop House Hotel until March 15, according to owner Ron Selvage.

The hotel was scheduled to be auctioned off by the special master appointed by the First Judicial Court at 11:45 a.m. Wednesday on the steps of the Los Alamos County Justice Center.

But the bank decided to give Selvage an extension.

Selvage said the deal he had made with a potential buyer a couple of weeks ago fell through. But, according to Selvage, there are two other interested parties.

Los Alamos National Bank president Steve Wells confirmed the date was pushed back.

“I know we delayed it,” Wells said. “Facilitating a business transaction can take a long time. March 15 sounds about right.”

The Los Alamos National Bank put the wheels in motion to foreclose on the company that owns and manages the Hilltop House Hotel back in October.

According to the legal notice that appeared in the Los Alamos Monitor, the total amount awarded by the judgment to LANB with interest to the date of the sale is $4,531,155,69 plus additional costs and attorney fees. The amount of interest to date is $521,785.36.

The complaint lists the defendants as Hilltop House, LLC, a New Mexico limited liability company; Hilltop House Hotel, Inc., a New Mexico corporation; Ron Selvage and Kimberly Selvage; and the Hilltop House Spa, LLC, a New Mexico limited liability company. They were all listed under the same case number in district court.

Back in September 2005, managing partner Ron Selvage and Hilltop House LLC took out a mortgage of $4.8 million. Selvage had the backing of a team of local investors, who pooled their funds and came up with $600,000. And one of the bigger investors was local businessman Roger Waterman of TRK Management.

Selvage said the hotel’s financial troubles can be traced to the economic downturn as well as a dwindling number of subcontractors working at the lab.

Selvage also said the hotel’s problems were only compounded when another new hotel opened for business just down the road in 2010.