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Makati Shangri-La Hotel to temporarily close

MAKATI SHANGRI-LA Hotel will be temporarily closing down operations starting next month as it yields to financial pressures caused by the lockdown.

The Shangri-La Group said in a statement on Wednesday that the company will be reorganizing its Philippine workforce and operations. It did not announce the length of the closure.

The luxury hotel operating in Makati City for almost three decades will be letting go of an unspecified number of employees, and will be offering compensation, healthcare coverage, and grocery support to former employees until the end of the year.

Shangri-La said that the closure decision was made after low business levels and a prolonged recovery timeline.

Hotels for much of the stricter lockdown declared in March last year to manage the public health crisis were not allowed to operate at full capacity.

Permission for full workforce capacity at general and modified general quarantine areas was given by the end of October.

Makati Shangri-La was one of the hotels given authority to operate for staycations, or what the Tourism department defines as leisure-based hotel stays close to the visitors’ residence.

The company during the lockdown cut costs by reducing salaries at the management level, imposed shorter work weeks, froze hiring, and cut “non-essential” spending.

“We continue to vigilantly monitor local and global developments and look forward to reopening Makati Shangri-La, Manila at a later date when business conditions have improved.”

The Tourism sector was hit hard by measures to contain the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, with revenues last year dropping 83% to P81.4 billion after a significant decline in foreign visitors. — Jenina P. Ibañez

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