Route 66 News

Ramada Kingman, Canyon 66 restaurant abruptly close

The Ramada Kingman hotel and its Canyon 66 Restaurant and Lounge in Kingman, Arizona, abruptly closed this week amid allegations of unpaid contractor bills and stiffed employees.

It was the second high-profile lodging establishment to close in Kingman in less than six months. The historic Hill Top Motel closed late last year after being foreclosed.

According to an article Wednesday in The Bee:

The California-based real estate developer who owns Ramada Kingman is under investigation for financial crimes. The property was purchased for less than $1 million in 2014 and multiple loans were taken out for a complete renovation of the property including new amenities such as a helicopter pad. Renovations were started on the property but halted after contractors abandoned the project due to non-payment. Unpaid employees committed thefts at the property which resulted in arrests from KPD. The property went into foreclosure in 2016. Additional loans were secured to avert closure. He filed for bankruptcy last month for the 6th time.

A Facebook post Wednesday on the Promote Kingman page reported the same thing and in a screen shot of a document identified the developer as Joel Zubaid.

Mohave County property records show the hotel was owned by Golden Crown Properties LLC, courtesy of Noble Zubaid, based in an office building in Redlands, California. Those records  showed more than $40,000 in property taxes and interest were owed in 2017.

A phone number listed on the hotel’s website was disconnected. A customer-service representative at Wyndham Worldwide Corp., which owns the Ramada chain, said by phone Wednesday night she was unaware the hotel had closed.

The Kingman Daily Miner reported Wednesday the hotel’s Canyon 66 Restaurant and Lounge closed Monday for “emergency maintenance.” The owners were supposed to meet with restaurant employees Monday but twice pushed back the meeting, settling on Friday.

The newspaper talked to Misha Dollarhide, a bartender at the restaurant.

“I knew it was coming, but I really wasn’t expecting this,” Dollarhide said about the Canyon 66 closure. “I guess I was. We haven’t received a paycheck in four or five weeks.” […]

Dollarhide said there were times when had to cash her paycheck before depositing the money into her bank account to make sure it had sufficient funds. At one point, she had three paychecks yet to be cashed.

The bartender had nothing but praise for Sultan Abbas, general manager of Canyon 66, who quit on Monday. He even took money out of his own pocket to pay employees, Dollarhide said. […]

Abbas said the owners fell behind on certain payments, which unfortunately put the business behind on payroll, and they were trying to catch up over the past few months.

A call Wednesday night to a phone number listed for the restaurant went unanswered.

The business, formerly a Magnuson hotel, was rebranded as a Ramada and remodeled its restaurant and lounge in a Route 66 theme less than five years ago. According to a 2014 article in the Daily Miner, brothers Joel and Noble Zubaid of California bought the property at 3100 E. Andy Devine Ave. (aka Route 66) in 2013. The article also reported a hotel had been at that site since at least the 1970s.

The Ramada Kingman played up Route 66 in its marketing, including soliciting images from Route 66 enthusiasts for a photo contest in 2016.

It also hired local author and Route 66 researcher Jim Hinckley as consultant for a while. Hinckley said in a text message Wednesday night the hotel was popular with Route 66 tour groups; he’s “scrambling” to find alternate lodging for those groups that had reservations at the Ramada Kingman.

(Image of the Ramada Kingman’s swimming pool in 2016 via Facebook)

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