Tourists ordered out of hotels

20 04 2010

ABC News (20 April 2010) has an AP report about tourists in the red shirt zone under the headline: “Hotels in Bangkok Sending Tourists Packing.” The article says that Bangkok’s “finest hotels sent guests packing for fear of violence at their doorsteps.” The Grand Hyatt, InterContinental and  The Four Seasons are mentioned.

Tourists in the Rajadamnoen area were also inconvenienced by the rally  there in March when PPT visited, and with transport services in disarray due to the rally in Rajaprasong, occupancy rates are way down. Apichart Sankary, from the Federation of Thai Tourism Associations, is cited: “No more ‘Land of Smiles,’ the image has been destroyed…. Tourists are frightened to see military personnel carrying guns. They can’t believe this is Thailand.”

According to the report, the “hotels took action on one of the more relaxed days in the deadlock” that saw “soldiers in full combat gear” deployed and prepared to shoot and protesters reinforcing defenses and preparing homemade weapons. The hotels claimed to be “relocating guests to other hotels for their safety.”

PPT can understand all of this and the reasoning, but this line threw us: “The nearby Holiday Inn and InterContinental also found safer accommodation for their guests and said new reservations would not be accepted until Monday.” Why Monday? Is this just a postponement or do they know of something more going on? Yes, we know, too conspiratorial by half, but we recall the airport closures back in 2008, when Thai Airways in the UK and USA repeatedly told callers that they would re-open on a particular date, and they did.



One response

21 04 2010
A blood-letting seems inevitable « Political Prisoners in Thailand

[…] has the feel of a sports page assessment of opposing teams. But is it telling as well. PPT pointed to hotels being emptied and this report tells of shops removing merchandise – it does feel […]

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