JHTA exec concerned about events at Moon Palace
OCHO RIOS, St Ann:
Chairman of the Runaway Bay, Ocho Rios Chapter of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA), Vana Taylor, has made an impassioned plea for a unified approach to ensure that refurbishing work at the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande is completed in the shortest possible time.
Taylor's plea comes after Friday's fire at the hotel, which reportedly damaged several pieces of new furniture at the hotel.
Construction workers at Moon Palace Jamaica Grande have withdrawn their services on a number of occasions.
The workers stopped work earlier this month, claiming that the management of the hotel plans to replace some of them with workers from Mexico.
"I am deeply concerned about what has been happening at Moon Palace Jamaica Grande, from several standpoints," Taylor told The Gleaner on Sunday.
"Palace Resorts has come in and they are having such a tremendous challenge to getting this project completed. I am encouraging all stakeholders to work together to get the property up and running. We need it."
Taylor said the hotel, when opened, will employ many persons, thus helping many families.
"We need to see how we, as citizens, as Jamaicans, can help the owners and the management to get the work done. Let's all sit down and find a way to help get it right," she appealed.
Meanwhile, an employee of the former Sunset Jamaica Grande, who is one of hundreds of workers who have made the transition to work with the new company, has expressed shock and disappointment at the fire.
"On the day in question, workers (meaning, the hotel staff, not construction workers) were commenting that in the two days since work resumed, it appeared that they have done more work than what was done over the six months prior," the worker said.
"We were quite happy to see the pace of work had picked up, so when I heard of the fire, I was shocked and disappointed. And even hearing comments from some of the Jamaican workers over money owed to them, I was appalled. We cannot be so short-sighted."
The worker said staff members are eager to begin working for Moon Palace as the company has given clear indications that they are quite a good company.
"From a worker point of view, we are eagerly looking forward to work for Moon Palace," the employee stated.
The fire is the latest in a string of events that have negatively affected the refurbishing time-line of the hotel and forced several cancellations of its opening date.