By Libya Herald staff.
Tripoli, 6 March 2014:
Sunday’s attack on the General National Congress (GNC) left Congress members literally without anywhere to . . .[restrict]sit after protestors burned and damaged chairs whilst vandalising the premises.
With few venues in the capital with a single space that can hold 200 people, the only option has been for the GNC to relocate to one of the city’s five-star hotels.
This, however, has raised security concerns for guests, prompting a number of early departures and cancellations at more than one location.
“We had around 20 early check-outs,” a member of the management at the hotel where the GNC relocated told the Libya Herald. “What is much more obvious, however, is the lack of bookings and telephone calls we have received over the last two to three days.”
He added that there had also been a noticeable drop in the number of visitors to the hotel, where its normally-busy restaurants and cafes have been almost empty.
“Security concerns are high, especially after news spread that the GNC had been ransacked, and whichever hotel hosts the GNC will experience a loss of business, with a drop in visitors and guests,” he said.
The Waddan Hotel also lost business after AP incorrectly reported that it would host GNC meetings. Management immediately contacted all guests to explain the mistake, Waddan’s sales executive Nidhal Bessi said, adding that this had reduced the number of early departures to around ten and cancellations to just a handful.
“I confirm that Waddan Hotel, Tripoli, did not have any communication orally or in writing with the Libyan Authorities, National Congress or media in regard to accommodating Libya’s parliament sessions,” General Manager Anas Tarsin said, in a statement the hotel released to try and repair any potential damage to business.
Tarsin blamed the media, which he said had not check with the hotel before publishing the story, and a member of the GNC for spreading misinformation.
The Rixos, located beside the GNC and once popular with members of both Congress and the government, was not an option for the GNC this time because it closed in December, ostensibly for refurbishment. [/restrict]