Let's discuss displaced children...
While Mati (4) and Joey (1) haven't been ripped from the arms of their parents, they have been removed from their home by some people who lack scruples, empathy, integrity, and (in my opinion) souls.
The latest coverage of the crisis at 1 South Main indicates that Aparium Hotel Group has settled with Reyes and Fleming in exchange for Aparium dropping the $100K+ law suit, and the couple moving out. While this is "truth adjacent" it is not 100% true. Violating their own NDA (non-disclosure agreement), Aparium released a statement to the Commercial Appeal indicating that they were "relocating" the family.
Nothing about this TWO YEAR battle has been easy for Reyes, Fleming, their two young daughters, their family, their friends, and their supporters. Three fruitless meetings with the DMC later, NO ONE has taken responsibility for this egregious mismanagement of Downtown Memphis's development programs. Lies, omissions, and collusion abound. It is truly horrifying to see some of the best people in Memphis be sold down the river for a "boutique hotel."
SO! I am asking you - possibly begging you? - to reenergize your efforts to share the truth about Aparium Hotel Group, The Madison Hotel/Hu. Hotel, the complicit Downtown Memphis Commission, and the Stand for Creatives movement.
Show your support for Memphis artists, and ask the Aparium Hotel Group to give Christopher Reyes back the home he has owned for the last 25 Years.
As Christopher and Sarah are not currently allowed to continue business as usual - both professional and personal - nor should Aparium. Disruption to the lives of the artists that make Memphis the thriving creative community it is, can be met with disruption to the falsehood of "local focus" Aparium openly markets.
Post reviews, and share your comments on what this group means, or will never mean, to Memphis. (Keep it classy, and factual - know the difference between a concerned citizen and an Internet troll.)
Please note that travel sites (like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Kayak) often review and remove reviews that do not contain details of your stay. You can most easily utilize these if you've actually had an experience in the hotel(s).
If you're feeling particularly creative, you can review the posts by Aparium and The Madison Hotel/Hu Hotel for partner organizations who are tagging them, and share your story with those entities as well.
Christopher and Sarah have put decades of investment into the Memphis community, and their legal bills are mounting. Additionally, the original judgement for the Aparium Group put them on the line for an additional $102,000 for "future improvements" to a space the Aparium currently has NO plans to renovate. If you can find it in your heart to skip a latte or two this week, please send some green vibes.
Share this site, the news coverage, the petition, the legal fund - ESPECIALLY with your contacts from the cities where Aparium has other properties. If they have so callously flaunted their lack of business ethics in Memphis, they will do it in other cities.
Press, city officials, arts organizations, community activists, tour managers - tell them what Aparium is up to.
You don't need to go so far as to create Google Alerts, but being "in the know" helps Christopher and Sarah, AND you. Join the "Stand For Creatives" Facebook group for the latest news on events and activities designed to bolster support for the fair treatment of working artists, and the preservation of the enhancements they make to local culture.
This situation impacts Christopher and Sarah the hardest, but speaks to a broader, nationwide dysfunction in the perceived economic value of creatives in an urban environment.