Cincinnati leaders give Millennium Hotel owner an ultimatum: Clean up or shut down

by Walter Smith-Randolph, WKRC

CINCINNATI (WKRC) – After years of asking the owners of Cincinnati’s Millennium Hotel to clean up, city leaders are now giving the owners an ultimatum: Clean up or shut down.

Mayor John Cranley and Hamilton County Prosecuting Attorney Joe Deters say they plan to file a public nuisance lawsuit against the hotel’s operators, which would shut down the hotel until it’s repaired or sold.

The hotel, which is the only hotel connected to the Duke Energy Center, is not a crowd-pleaser.

“It’s a big square building,” said Evan Lewis, who works in downtown Cincinnati. “Probably could use an update.”

“It kind of needs some work,” said Jeff Little, who was visiting Cincinnati for a convention. “You figure with it being in the heart of Cincinnati, it would have some pride behind it, look a little better.”

Some downtown visitors say while it’s not a five-star place, it doesn’t look that bad.

“Cincinnati deserves the best there is, but I don’t think this is offensive in any way,” said Ryan Ramsey.

But Deters says the inside of the hotel is where it gets offensive.

“It’s got bed bug issues, the carpets are destroyed, there’s vermin issues, apparently, and we’re going to get that from the health department, but Mayor Cranley, to his credit, has tried to get them to clean this place up,” Deters said on 700 WLW Tuesday afternoon.

In a statement, the hotel’s owners are pushing back saying:

We have not seen any details of the alleged case yet, so we cannot make any specific comments at this time. Should the lawsuit be brought formally, we will carefully review it and respond accordingly.

The statement goes on to say:

We take pride in our staff and quality of service we provide, and have had no specific ‘nuisance’ complaints from guests, employees or immediate neighbors of the Millennium Hotel Cincinnati that would merit such an action. However, we are aware of the general challenges faced by the convention center and we will be pleased to listen to the views of the City, County and other stakeholders as we review our options in respect of the property.

A timeline for when the lawsuit will be filed has not been released just yet, but a similar lawsuit was filed against the Terrace Plaza Hotel last week.

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