Hospitality and Lodging

Owners, operators, developers, brands, and investors in the hospitality industry require a full range of legal services. Venable's ability to deliver seamless support as an integrated team across multiple practice areas sets it apart from most law firms. For more than 30 years, our hospitality lawyers have worked on projects reflecting every facet of the industry, including hotels, restaurants, nightclubs, golf courses, spas, casinos, and entertainment venues. We are trusted advisors to many of the largest hotel operators in the world, and some of the biggest investors, real estate funds, investment managers, and REITs in the hospitality industry.

Venable provides comprehensive transactional, real estate, litigation, finance, advertising, labor, employment, and other commercial services. We also have extensive experience in the government space and highly regulated areas such as advertising and marketing, corporate governance, tax, and Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) compliance.

Venable has represented hospitality industry members with regard to nearly every major legislative and regulatory issue affecting the sector for the last 25 years.



  • We handle complex portfolio sales. Recently we managed a deal valued at $1.7 billion, involving more than 100 properties
  • Venable has participated in transactions on behalf of franchisors involving more than 300 hotel properties in the last three years alone
  • Our hospitality attorneys are representing one of the world's largest hotel brands in a deal to migrate its worldwide Central Reservations System
  • We assisted a long-time key player in the lodging and hospitality industry in forming a hospitality investment fund joint venture with other industry veterans


  • We represented the controlling member and lead equity investor in a recapitalization of a national fast casual restaurant brand, which has more than 25 locations throughout the United States, including Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco
  • We served as co-counsel to the hotel owner/borrower in the refinancing of its construction loan facility for the SLS Hotel South Beach and its subsequent sale of the hotel
  • We served as co-counsel to the hotel owner/borrower in the refinancing of its construction loan facility for the SLS Park Avenue in New York City
  • We served as co-counsel to the hotel owner/borrower in obtaining its construction loan facility for the SLS Hotel & Residences Brickell
  • We served as co-counsel to SBE in the refinancing of its prior credit facility, the proceeds of which were used to redeem a former minority investor, retire existing debt, and fund working and growth capital

Real Estate

  • Our attorneys are recognized leaders in REITs, representing more than half of the publicly registered REITs formed in Maryland
  • We have one of the most active distressed commercial hospitality and lodging-related real estate practices in the United States, and have served as lead counsel in commercial real estate workouts totaling more than $30 billion since 2010
  • We served as co-counsel to the seller in connection with the sale of the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills, a 297-room lifestyle hotel that includes The Bazaar by José Andrés
  • We represented Ashford Hospitality Trust in its acquisition of the Bardessono Hotel & Spa located in Yountville, CA

Advertising, Marketing and Brand Protection

  • Our award-winning advertising and marketing team provides comprehensive support to hospitality companies on global advertising campaigns, including review of all advertising, social media outreach, and sweepstakes and promotions
  • Venable recently assisted a leading hospitality chain in launching a new rewards program for its luxury brand, as well as a social media "insider" rewards program
  • We advise numerous hospitality clients on telemarketing regulations, including inbound/outbound calling, Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) compliance, and Do Not Call (DNC) compliance, including in-depth analysis of the Existing Business Relationship exemption
  • We helped a hospitality client revamp its global trademark strategy, devising new approaches to its brand protection, clearance, filings, and enforcement strategies
  • We represent hospitality clients in structuring and negotiating their online marketing and sales agreements

Labor and Employment

  • We represent hospitality industry clients in labor and employment matters, including unfair labor practice proceedings before the NLRB; negotiation of collective bargaining agreements; arbitrations and defense against claimed violations of federal and state wage and hour laws, and anti-discrimination laws; and compliance counseling
  • Venable has substantial collective bargaining experience with restaurant, hotel, theater, entertainment, and hospitality clients, including the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Union

Management and Ownership Agreements

  • We develop and negotiate management agreements for some of the largest global hospitality entities


    Chambers USA

    • Ranked in 23 categories, including Leisure & Hospitality, Corporate/M&A, Labor & Employment, and Real Estate
    • The group's Hospitality co-chair is listed in the "Leisure and Hospitality" category

    U.S. News / Best Lawyers

    • Ranked in 110 categories, including Real Estate, Tax, Corporate Law, M&A, and Commercial Litigation