Editor's Note: This article is part of the Financial Advisor series "How I Solved It." Advisors describe a client with a problem and what they did to help.

If a client has all the money he or she needs, the philanthropic-minded may want to give some assets to charity. But that is not always a simple proposition if the donation is something like a hotel or other complex asset.

Andy Hart, CEO of Delegate Advisors in Chapel Hill, N.C., has a client with enough money to be set for life. He made large contributions to charity every year, but then he decided he had a hotel he wanted to donate to help address one of the causes he was passionate about.

Delegate Advisors is a registered investment advisor that provides independent wealth advice to wealthy families with multi-faceted financial lives and complicated needs, such as donating complex assets to charity.

The firm serves 30 high-net-worth families, with average assets of roughly $60 million. Most of Delegate Advisor’s clients are first generation wealth builders. The firm utilizes a team approach, with the team representing all clients rather than having one advisor assigned to each family, said Hart, who co-founded the company in 2012.

Hart was working with the client who owned part of a large hotel chain, which he had helped develop from the ground up. He retained ownership of a few of the original hotels when the chain was sold and he wanted to step back from the day-to-day work of managing the chain.

“He loved the hotel business and especially these older hotels that were an original part of the chain, and he did not need the money that would result from a sale,” Hart said. “When he was approached by someone that wanted to buy the hotels, the client decided instead to give one to charity. Then the issue arose: How do you give a privately owned hotel to charity?”

The client’s share of the hotel was appraised at $4 million and he wanted to give the maximum value to the charity. The client and his wife, both in their 70s, had long been philanthropically minded and had given hundreds of thousands of dollars a year to health-care and education causes, Hart said. They already had a plan to give away their wealth over a 10-year-period and had established a private foundation.

“What we needed was not the private foundation but a public charity that could handle this type of donation,” Hart explained, adding that this was to be a part of the couple’s overall donations for the year for tax purposes. The couple had the capacity to fully deduct this gift.

“The key was finding a 501c(3) organization that could accept the gift of the hotel while it was still privately held,” he said. “We looked at the balance sheets of the potential charities. In turn, the charity had to review the balance sheet and income statements of the hotel because the board of directors had to determine if the hotel would be attractive to a buyer. In the end, we worked with the charity and they accepted the gift, eventually selling the hotel to the interested buyer.”

Hart added, “At Delegate Advisors we are familiar with a few of the larger charities that are comfortable analyzing the risks involved in accepting complex assets. After explaining the circumstances of this possible sale, the charity researched the property and concluded that it was well-managed and profitable. Therefore, the charity was comfortable owning the property and was willing to accept the risk of the sale falling through if something went wrong.”

Nothing went wrong and the sale was completed.

“A lot of advisors have clients with complex assets who don’t need the extra money that a sale of an item would bring in," Hart said. "The key is to structure the gift to receive the full fair market value of the asset given to the charity. The entire transaction took about two months to arrange and our client was pleased with the result.”