The property owner of Elliott Stables has offered tenants at the central Auckland dining village rental relief they claim to be worth nearly $675,000.
But some tenants say they don't seem to be benefiting from the relief package and may still be forced to let their businesses go.
Eight of the 12 eateries have not reached a deal with landlord, the Icon Group, and met on Tuesday afternoon to discuss their next course of action, including asking for a 50 per cent rent reduction moving forward.
They said they were already struggling from the impact of the City Rail Link construction works, and the impact of the coronavirus outbreak could land their businesses with a fatal blow.
Icon's group general manager Denise Kyne said the group has provided tenants with substantial rental relief.
"What we are pleased to inform you is that The Icon Group has provided all Elliott Stables tenants a substantial rental relief package to the value of $674,950.38," Kyne said.
In an email seen by the Herald, this included a 100 per cent discount from the April rent and deferred payments of varying percentages for rents from May to July.
"The company has taken on additional debt in order to fund this rent-relief package, which we are grateful to our bankers for," she said.
Kyne said it was a targeted assistance aimed at providing tenants with the best chance of getting through this difficult period.
"However, if some of those tenants believe such relief is not sufficient, then they have the right to seek arbitration as per the Labour Government's recently announced temporary changes to the Property Law Act," she said.
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Kyne said its internal pedestrian counter had shown a steady increase week on week since the food hall reopened at level 2.
"We look forward to having the Civic Theatre and nearby cinemas reopening, which should lead to the Elliott Stables trading at pre-covid levels and enable them to continue to thrive as the mid city dining destination of choice for many Aucklanders," she added.
Luis Cabrera, owner of Besos Latinos, is questioning about how Icon came up with the $674,950.38 figure.
"I don't know where or who the landlord is giving this massive rent relief to because it's clearly not us," Cabrera said.
Cabrera offered 80 per cent of his daily takings in lieu of rent, but said the landlord would not accept the offer.
"For most of us, business is down 70 to 80 per cent, even after we got to level 1," he said.
George Panicker George, who owns two businesses Ela Cuisine and Reslau, said he will be asking for a 50 per cent reduction in rent.
"If our landlord doesn't offer this rent reprieve, then many of us will be forced to let our businesses go," he said.
George said the landlord was calling for one-on-one meetings with individual business owners, and was hopeful for some agreement to be reached.
Earlier this month, the business owners sent flowers with personal messages to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, mayor Phil Goff and other ministers as a way of protesting against the coronavirus restrictions and City Rail Link.
The bouquets had cards signed: Best wishes from The Dying Businesses of Elliott Stables.