Skip to content

BAUEN, day 29

The Bauen closes its doors

The Bauen managed by Solari reached a crisis, and Iurcovich himself forced him to present a call of creditors (the first step in the mechanism in the Bankruptcy Law to resolve business insolvencies). A lien was placed by judge Rodolfo Herrera of the National Court on Civil and Commercial Affairs, no. 3, Sec. 5, which took 20% of the hotel’s earnings. That put a financial chokehold on Solari, depriving him of the cash he needed to comply with his obligations to his creditors. That is how Solari SA’s legal agent, Gabriel Jaijel, explained it: “It was an emergency measure caused by a financial chokehold. Now, my client’s wish is to come to an agreement with his creditors for liabilities of around eight million pesos.”

The political and economic situation of the country was deteriorating rapidly with the government of the Alliance, whose crisis was accelerated when the Vice-President, Carlos “Chacho” Álvarez, resigned in October of 2000 in the fallout from the bribery scandal in the National Senate known as the “Banelco Law,” a law that made work precarious and caused the destruction of labor rights. With bankruptcy decreed on February 22, 2001, management of the BAUEN passed into the hands of a trusteeship. “A trustee started to manage us. We made 50 pesos per week,” María Eva recalls. “By February of 2001, a trustee took charge of the hotel,” relates Horacio Lalli, another worker. “Two trustees really—one was an accountant, and the other I don’t remember very well now, but I think he was a lawyer, and they carried out all the the managerial part of the hotel.”

Another worker, Gladys Alegre, maintains that the trusteeship did nothing to stop asset-stripping: among other less obvious things, the furniture of the tower became part of the assets of the Bauen Suite. As Horacio points out, the fate of the Bauen business was, “as of that point, a chronicle of an announced death.” And Marcelo Ruarte, another storied cooperative member and its first president, reinforces the idea: “we were expecting the final blow, because, to tell the truth, there was no longer any movement. I mean, we knew that the hotel would be closing at any moment.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *