Hong Kong Hotels in Survival Mode and 8 Other Top Hospitality Stories This Week

Beboy  / Adobe

Hotels in Hong Kong are hurting from the coronavirus outbreak, and that’s on top of already low occupancy rates from the ongoing anti-government protests. Beboy / Adobe

Skift Take: Hotels in Hong Kong were already hurting from the ongoing anti-government protests when coronavirus hit. Will the city’s assailed leadership help the industry in this time of crisis? Plus, on the other hand, Marriott is already reopening some of its China locations.

— Danielle Hyams

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European Union to Investigate Italy Loan to Beleaguered Alitalia

Leandro Ciuffo  / Flickr

Alitalia may have taken illegal state aid from the Italian government. The European Union is looking into the matter. Leandro Ciuffo / Flickr

Skift Take: Lots of smart people saw this coming. The Italian government was desperate to save Alitalia, the historic flag carrier. Given the importance of the airline to the country, this was understandable. The problem is EU rules bar governments from providing most types of aide to beleaguered airlines.

— Brian Sumers

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IAG Says It Won’t Repeat Past Mistakes With Coronavirus Response

Stuart Bailey  / British Airways

A British Airways A350. Parent company IAG has reported its full-year results. Stuart Bailey / British Airways

Skift Take: Willie Walsh has accumulated decades of experience across the aviation industry, and he’s big enough to admit he’s made mistakes in the past. The situation looks bleak at the moment, but what happens when the market recovers?

— Patrick Whyte

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Asia Tourism Wants to Finally Tackle a Dangerously Hot Situation

Xinyi Liang-Pholsena  / Skift

The Mekong River, a critical lifeline in Southeast Asia, is seeing its lowest levels in a century, the result of controversial dams and severe drought exacerbated by climate change. A view of the river from Chiang Khan, Loei Province, in Thailand. Xinyi Liang-Pholsena / Skift

Skift Take: With the impacts of climate change already upon us, the tourism sector will soon be forced to take aggressive actions to curb its carbon emissions. Because inaction is increasingly not an option.

— Xinyi Liang-Pholsena

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Marriott Is Already Reopening China Hotels During Coronavirus Crisis


The JW Marriott Sanya Haitang Bay in China. Marriott is bringing closed hotels back online in China as the coronavirus crisis cools down. Marriott

Skift Take: Marriott was already having trouble in Asia Pacific in 2019 before the coronavirus impact hit. The company isn’t forecasting a major impact outside of Asia, and is already reopening hotels inside China. It pays to collect fees, and not actually own or run hotels during a crisis like this.

— Andrew Sheivachman

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