The future of one of the West Midlands' best-known business and conference hotels - the Hilton Metropole at the NEC - will be at risk if a move to site the country's biggest casino nearby goes ahead.
Hilton say the 900-bed hotel requires substantial refurbishment, is running at little more than 50 per cent occupancy, and profitability would be seriously damaged if the NEC's plan to build a regional casino and hotel with Las Vegas-based MGM Mirage is approved.
Roger Devlin, corporate director of Hilton Group, claimed the NEC had missed an opportunity to secure the refurbishment of the 40-yearold Metropole by signing MGM Mirage as its partner in the casino venture.
A bid by Hilton and its gaming arm, Ladbroke, to broker a casino deal with the NEC, which would have transformed the hotel, failed.
Mr Devlin said a 500-bed hotel attached to the casino would put further strain on the Metropole.
"The future of the hotel and its ability to trade profitably would be seriously jeopardised," said.
"We would have to give very stringent consideration as to what our options are. We have 900 rooms that are only 50 per cent full. What on earth are we going to do when another 500 hotel rooms are on the site?"
Mr Devlin said more than 800 full and part-time jobs at the Metropole would be at risk.
"If I can't run it profitably I can't reinvest in it," he added.
He claimed an NEC link with Hilton would influence a Government decision on the location of Britain's first super-casino.
Mr Devlin said: "We don't want to see a monster casino created and all of the profits go to America. Although our hotel has been a valiant servant of Midland industry over the past 40 years, it is now dated. It wouldn't win any architectural awards.
"We would be delighted to transform the Metropole into a casino hotel. It would give us an opportunity to revamp the entire hotel.
"We went to Solihull Council and they were very sympathetic. They said it makes no sense to have a second newly-built hotel on the site when the M42 exit is under so much pressure when there are major functions at the NEC.
"It has become clear in discussions with the NEC that this isn't a solution that they favour. The issue is going to be that, for every two jobs their project creates, a job will be lost at our hotel. The net job gain will be insignificant."
NEC management hit back, revealing that Hilton/Ladbroke's attempt to secure a casino deal never got beyond informal discussions.
A spokeswoman said: "Roger Devlin is absolutely correct. The Hilton Metropole is massively under-invested in. We regularly receive complaints about the hotel hiking prices during peak exhibition periods, yet delivering low standards of service.
"With other hotels on our site achieving occupancy rates of 70 to 80 per cent, perhaps the Hilton's low occupancy levels are more about these issues than anything else?
"We are investing heavily in the NEC to make certain that we deliver five-star service to our customers.
"The hotels on the NEC site are an important part of our offer and would become particularly critical in helping us deliver high quality accommodation for a future gaming and entertainment complex.
"Ultimately, it is our visitors that will decide if they want to stay at the Hilton Metropole, not us. So whether the catalyst for change is the threat of future competition on their doorstep or simply that they finally wake up to what their customers are saying: Hilton plc needs to start investing in that hotel if it is to share in the NEC's future success."
Standards at the Hilton Metropole were criticised by the TV motoring pundit Jeremy Clarkson, whose stay was marred by the drunken behaviour of many guests.
Birmingham City Council will decide next month which one of two super-casino bids to support - the NEC or Birmingham City FC.