Hotels occupancy hit by Bahrain unrest
Manama, February 22, 2011
Hotels across Bahrain have been hit by the violent clashes between police and anti-government protesters.
Representatives of some of the country's best-known hotels confirmed occupancy levels had fallen in the wake of political unrest.
'We are still operating with occupancy of 70 per cent because of the business from the airport,' said Mšvenpick Hotel Bahrain general manager Heinz Kraehenbuehl.
'We have not been as badly affected as some of the hotels in the city, but we have seen a lot of cancellations of leisure bookings and all functions have also been cancelled.
Diplomat Radisson BLU Hotel Residence and Spa general manager Rick Erdos confirmed booking enquiries at the hotel were also down.
'We've noticed a slowdown in booking enquiries, but we are confident normal business will resume over the next few days,' he said.
A Sheraton Hotel spokesman confirmed its bookings lower than previous years, but refused to reveal any figures.
Gulf Hotel general manager and deputy chief executive officer Garfield Jones confirmed it had suffered a spate of corporate cancellations.
'The first quarter of the year is considered the high season in Bahrain but in light of recent events we have noticed considerable drops in occupancy by corporate clients from our feeder markets,' he said.
'We have also received forward cancellations of conference and group events, which will subsequently impact on quarter two and quarter three.'
The InterContinental Hotel Group (IHG), which owns the InterContinental Regency Bahrain and Crowne Plaza Hotel, claimed neither had been affected.
'The unrest in Bahrain has not directly affected the InterContinental Bahrain and the Crowne Plaza Bahrain, as the centre of the unrest is 10-minutes drive from the hotels,' said IHG director of operations for the northern Gulf Hani Kafafi.
'We've had a couple of bookings cancelled and are monitoring the situation, but in the meantime it's business as usual for both our hotels in Bahrain.'
Officials from the Ritz-Carlton Bahrain Hotel and Spa declined to comment.-TradeArabia News Service