02 March 2006
Hotel Sheraton gets its closure notices
Virginia Jaramillo, the senior political figure in the part of Mexico City where the Hotel Sheraton stands came along personally this morning to slap the first three closure orders on the building. A few hours after her visit, the rest of the building received its full quota of such notices.
As readers of this blog will know, the hotel had the temerity to turf out 16 Cuban guests who were staying there last month. Now they have to pay the price for their stupidity.
A fine of about £10,000 has been levied on them for their failure to have the correct planning permits for part of the building. The notices will be removed once that has been paid. My feeling is that this amount will already have been paid, and the hotel is probably open for business as usual, but that is not the point.
The point is that the American owners have had to shell out 10,00 quid to the city government. Next, they will have to pay-back the Cubans who had paid in advance for the rooms and who were forced to leave at such short notice - the federal government has already told them that they, the hotel are responsible, not the American government. Finally, that same federal government has a case of its own pending against the hotel Sheraton, that will probably be heard in about May or June. That's right - just in time for the Mexican elections, and just in time to give the Sheraton and its American owners another slapping.