PHOTO: The Australian Open was pushed back to February 8 from January 20 due to the pandemic
The Australian Open is in chaos after a hotel that was to house international players for quarantine pulled out over its residents’ Covid-19 fears.
The Westin Melbourne in Collins Street was one of the hotels planned to host players and their entourages for the mandatory 14-day quarantine from January 17 to 31.
But the contract with the hotel was suddenly cancelled, leaving Tennis Australia and the Victorian Government scrambling to find backup accommodation.
Players will touch down in Australia on January 15, leaving organisers precious little time to find somewhere else to house them.
Apartment owners at the exclusive hotel claim the influx of tennis players from around the globe poses an unacceptable health risk to them and the broader community
It’s believed the government may have to fork out a hefty multi-million dollar compensation to the owners of The Westin over the cancellation, The Age reports.
MP Lisa Neville announced the government is finding an alternate hotel after ‘becoming aware on Sunday that there were some concerns’ from residents and owners.
Apartment owners at the exclusive hotel claim the influx of tennis players from around the globe poses an unacceptable health risk to them and the broader community.
Frank Carbone told The Today Show that he and other residents weren’t told about the quarantine plan until Christmas Eve, before receiving more correspondence on New Year’s Eve.
‘I think we were disappointed that we weren’t shared the COVID-safe plan, that we had to, in fact, engage a lawyer to seek that plan to review it,’ he said.
‘We haven’t got the information to make a proper assessment to therefore then make a proper decision.
‘It’s not as if there’s a separate lift tower or it’s a lift infrastructure that serves both the hotel guests and the [permanent] residents.’
A contract with The Westin Melbourne was suddenly cancelled, prompting Tennis Australia and the Victorian Government to scramble to find a back-up hotel
The Westin management said their ‘COVID safe’ plan involves having residents use a separate entrance and lifts and have no contact with players and quarantine staff
READ MORE VIA THE DAILY MAIL