Published on:

HMA Handbook, 2nd edition is released — Hotel Management Agreements for hotel owners, developers, investors and lenders

19 September 2012

JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group® releases 2nd Edition of The HMA Handbook,
Hotel Management Agreements for hotel owners, developers, investors and lenders

LOS ANGELES–The Global Hospitality Group® of Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell LLP (JMBM) today announced the publication of the 2nd edition of The HMA Handbook, a practical guide for hotel owners, developers, investors and lenders negotiating, re-negotiating or terminating hotel management agreements (HMAs).

Co-authored by JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group® Chairman, Jim Butler and Partner and Senior Member of the Group, Robert E. Braun, the 1st edition of The HMA Handbook was released in March 2011 to an enthusiastic readership, evidenced by thousands of requests for the electronic book.

Taken from content available on the Hotel Law Blog, the new and expanded 2nd edition of the HMA Handbook adds 5 new chapters of the practical advice readers have come to expect from JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group®, including:

  • 10 tips for negotiating a hotel management agreement
  • An update on HMA litigation and fiduciary duties
  • Case studies on the terminations of the Waikiki Edition and Turnberry Isle hotel management agreements


“The hotel management agreement is the linchpin of a successful hotel investment,” said Butler, whose Group has negotiated, litigated and advised on more than 1,000 HMAs. “The HMA holds together a very complex structure, and every critical investment and operational decision is tied to the agreement. In fact, the hotel management agreement can easily add or subtract as much as 25 percent of the value of a hotel.”

“We help hotel owners, developers, investors and lenders negotiate with hotel operators to maintain that value,” said Braun. “The traditional brand operators have full-time, professional business and legal advisors who negotiate these agreements day in and day out. Owners are not in the business of negotiating management agreements, and that puts them at a big disadvantage.”

How to get a free copy of the 2nd edition of the HMA Handbook

To download a copy of the HMA Handbook (2nd edition), go to www.hotellawyer.com, select the “RESOURCE CENTER” tab, click on the “HMA Handbook”, and then the download link.

Important topics covered in the 2nd edition HMA Handbook

Written in plain English, The HMA Handbook, 2nd edition, covers three topics critical to every hotel owner, developer, investor or lender:

1. How to get a great hotel operator

  • Maximizing hotel value with management, branding and franchise
  • 2 of the most important things you will ever do for your hotel
  • The 5 biggest mistakes hotel owners make in selecting operators and negotiating hotel management agreements
  • Why hotel owners need an HMA PRO™ to identify and retain the best operator for its hotel
  • How to negotiate a hotel management agreement: 10 tips for a smoother process

2. What you need in your hotel management agreement

  • What to do before you start negotiating your hotel management agreement
  • Hotel management agreement performance standards and why they matter
  • Hotel management agreement performance standards – the operator’s take
  • Hotel management agreement performance standards – the owner’s return test
  • 5 keys for good budget provisions in the hotel management agreement
  • Indemnification provisions
  • How SNDAs (subordination agreements) affect the value, financeability, and collateral value of a hotel
  • Exculpation clauses – protecting the owner’s assets

3. How to terminate a hotel management agreement

  • Why hotel management agreement litigation is on the rise
  • The importance of “fiduciary” duties in disputes between hotel owners and hotel operators
  • Case studies on hotel management agreement terminations
  • Terminating hotel management agreements when things don’t work? Not easy, but not impossible either
  • Terminating a hotel management agreement – where to begin
  • The hotel bankruptcy trump card
  • Hotel management agreement terminations – is there a better way?

“In our experience, even the sharpest business minds have huge knowledge gaps when it comes to HMAs,” said Butler. “The Handbook was developed to help our clients and friends in the hospitality industry get up to speed on issues that have a major impact on the value of their hotel investment.”

Commitment to the Hospitality Industry

JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group® is an active participant in the hospitality industry and we are committed to providing thought leadership, education, and opportunities for members of the industry to gather and share information. By visiting www.HotelLawyer.com, you can see some of the many projects we have handled and learn about the legal and advisory services we provide. You can also access the Hotel Law Blog, register to receive the books in our We Wrote the Book™ series, and find updates for our annual Meet the Money® conference (May 6-8, 2013 at the Sheraton Gateway Hotel in Los Angeles).

JMBM’s Global Hospitality Group®

The hotel lawyers in the Global Hospitality Group® of Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell (JMBM) comprise the premier hospitality practice in a full-service law firm. We represent hotel owners, developers, investors and lenders and have helped our clients find business and legal solutions for more than $60 billion of hotel transactions, involving more than 1,300 properties worldwide. For more information about the Global Hospitality Group®, go to www.HotelLawyer.com

This is Jim Butler, author of www.HotelLawBlog.com and hotel lawyer, signing off. We’ve done more than $60 billion of hotel transactions and have developed innovative solutions to unlock value from hotels. Who’s your hotel lawyer?


Our Perspective. We represent hotel lenders, owners and investors. We have helped our clients find business and legal solutions for more than $60 billion of hotel transactions, involving more than 1,300 properties all over the world. For more information, please contact Jim Butler at jbutler@jmbm.com or +1 (310) 201-3526.

Jim Butler is a founding partner of JMBM, and Chairman of its Global Hospitality Group® and Chinese Investment Group™. Jim is one of the top hospitality attorneys in the world. GOOGLE “hotel lawyer” and you will see why.

Jim and his team are more than “just” great hotel lawyers. They are also hospitality consultants and business advisors. They are deal makers. They can help find the right operator or capital provider. They know who to call and how to reach them.