The jury was asked by Eighth Judicial District Court JudgeElizabeth Gonzalez to determine whether Tamares or the previousowners of the existing Plaza hotel in Las Vegas had proven thatthey had used the name before 1986, which is when the previousowners of the Plaza Hotel had obtained its federal trademarkregistrations. "The answer was no," a source with the Court tellsGlobeSt.com. Online access to the lawsuit has been restricted sinceit went to trial.

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"The new Plaza Las Vegas will occupy a magnificent complex in aprime location on the Strip--building on the traditions andheritage of its iconic namesake, the Plaza Hotel in New York,"El-Ad Group president Mike Naftali said in a prepared statement.The 34.5-acre development is currently slated to open in 2012across from Wynn Las Vegas.

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El-Ad's $1.25-billion land acquisition for the project of wasfirst announced in May 2007. El-Ad subsequently brought on apartner, Property and Building Corp. Ltd., which is a subsidiary ofTel Aviv-based IDB Development Corp., Israel's largest businessgroup. In March 2008, the joint venture formed for the $8-billionproject, El-Ad IDB Las Vegas LLC, received approvals for its sitedevelopment plan and special use permit from the Clark CountyCommission. At the time, the JV said design completion and thestart of the excavation is scheduled to occur before the end of2008.

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Naftali told GlobeSt.com earlier this month through arepresentative that the project would be delayed for severalmonths. He also confirmed that its payments on $625 million ofacquisition debt from Goldman Sachs Group and Credit Suisse Grouphave been deferred to May 2009.

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Thirty months after excavation begins, Naftali says the sitewill include seven high-rise towers atop a mid-rise podium. Thestructures will house 4,100 hotel rooms; 2,600 condominium units;175,900 sf of gaming; 480,000 sf of retail and restaurant space;539,607 sf of convention space; a 50,000 sf health club; a1,500-seat theater; and 227,038-sf of recreation space for poolsand other amenities.

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"The delay is to allow us time plan and ensure the plans arefully complete and that all bids are in before construction canbegin," Naftali said. "Unlike other projects that build and plan asthey go, The Plaza wants to be as efficient as possible so they aremapping out all the plans and getting all the bids before beginningexcavation."

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El-Ad recently settled out of court another lawsuit related tothe Plaza Las Vegas project. Resort Properties of America ownerDavid Atwell, the broker who initiated the land acquisition, suedEl-Ad in June 2007 for $12.5 million, the 1% brokerage fee he felthe was owed for initiating the transaction between El-Ad Group,which is controlled by Israeli billionaire Yitzhak Tshuva andWichita billionaire Phil Ruffin. The lawsuit was settled last monthfor an undisclosed amount, though Atwell told GlobeSt.com "it is aconsiderable number."

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With regard to the Plaza name issue, Atwell tells GlobeSt.comthat when El-Ad originally approached his company regarding theproperty,"old Plaza Hotel downtown never even came into thediscussion; I don't think they were ever aware of it."

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Despite his tussle with El-Ad, Atwell is fond of their projectand happy the company will be able to use the Plaza name. "I'm surewhen things turn around, we'll see this fabulous Plaza project," hesays. "It may be the finest ever built in Las Vegas and I'm gladthey prevailed."

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