Heritage Mountain has made a firm offer to buy the financially strapped Provo Excelsior Hotel, but the agreement has not been finalized.

Heritage Mountain President Victor Borcherds said those involved in the deal have not signed the agreement, but negotiations are progressing."We've had extensive negotiations, but no one has signed anything," Borcherds said. "I think conceptually we have an agreement, but we don't have a deal."

Jim Ferguson, Excelsior general manager, confirmed "there was a firm offer from Mr. Borcherds." Negotiations could be finalized soon or they "could be quite lengthy," he said.

This is the second offer to purchase the hotel. One that was considered last year was reviewed for 10 months before being turned down, Ferguson said.

Several parties have shown interest in the hotel, Ferguson said, but "to my knowledge no agreement has been made."

Last month a St. Louis bank that is trustee for bonds issued to finance the Excelsior's construction began foreclosure action against the hotel for non-payment of the debt.

The Excelsior's owners had anticipated the foreclosure, and it has not affected the facility's daily operation, Ferguson said.

"In 1986, the owners informed the trustees that they would not be able to meet debt service on the bonds," Ferguson said when the legal steps were taken in March. "The trustees could have foreclosed at any time since then, so the action has been anticipated for a long time."