Ethiopia: Hyatt Regency Closes Doors, Temporarily

Hyatt Regency, one of the 10 internationally franchised hotels in the capital, has temporarily closed its doors through the end of May.

The third franchise hotel owned by a non-national aside from Sheraton Addis Hotel and Radisson Blu, Hyatt stopped offering restaurant and bar services as of yesterday. The decision makes it the first franchised hotel in the capital to stop operations after Ethiopia reported the first Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) case. To date, health authorities have disclosed 44 confirmed cases, as well as two fatalities and four recoveries.

The closure is intended to protect the safety and wellbeing of employees and guests, according to Heddo Siebs, general manager of the Hotel, which opened its doors on December 31, 2018.

Over the past couple of weeks, the flow of customers to hotels in the capital has dropped significantly. However, Hyatt's General Manager Heddo declined to confirm the closure has something to do with the reduction in traffic to the hotel. Owned by Albwardy Investment, a Dubai-based company, the hotel will start to accept reservations for guestroom and restaurant services as of June 1, 2020, the general manager told Fortune.

Standing at the junction of Africa Avenue and Jomo Kenyatta Street near Mesqel Square, Hyatt Regency operates with 188 rooms. The management also placed the employees on leave during the closure period, according to the manager.

"We continue to closely monitor the ongoing situation, remain vigilant and follow guidelines and protocols recommended by international and local authorities," said Heddo.

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