Free pass to party: DOT demands explanation from Berjaya Hotel over ‘Poblacion Girl’s’ quarantine breach

The Department of Tourism wants the head of Berjaya Makati Hotel’s head on a platter following reports that it allowed a returning Filipino to skip quarantine despite strict health protocols imposed by the IATF.

READ: Who let ‘Gwyneth Chua’ out? Berjaya Makati Hotel under probe for allegedly breaking quarantine protocols

DOT issued a show cause order to Gladiolyn Biala, hotel general manager, to explain why the establishment should not be penalized for allowing a certain Gwyneth Anne Chua to leave the premises even if she hasn’t finished quarantine yet.

Based on reports, Chua flew in from the United States and skipped the mandatory facility-based quarantine — a protocol reinstalled due to the spread of the highly transmissible Omicron variant of COVID-19. She reportedly paid money to the hotel in exchange of early freedom, which she used to party around Poblacion in Makati.

“It has come to the attention of the Department of Tourism (DOT) that Ms. Gwyneth Anne Chua, a guest of Berjaya Hotel Makati, was allegedly able to leave your hotel and was seen in a bar in Poblacion, Makati on 23 December 2021, despite being under mandatory quarantine,” the DOT’s demand letter read.

“We understand that in Berjaya’s letter to DOT dated 29 December 2021, Ms. Chua stayed in your hotel on 22 December 2021 for her quarantine, and was declared COVID positive on 27 December 2021,” the agency added.

DOT has given Berjaya Hotel three days to respond to the show cause order.