Tuesday 28 March 2017

Hotelier slams claims homeless families treated any differently to 'normal hotel guests'

Credit: Facebook
Credit: Facebook
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

A Dublin hotel has strenuously denied claims it has drawn up strict rules specifically for its homeless guests.

“We've no different policy for homeless guests and why would there be?” a spokesperson for the Clontarf-based Bram Stoker told independent.ie.

The Bram Stoker Hotel is one of the hotels providing rooms for those who have been forced out of their homes and into emergency accommodation as a result of the housing crisis.

The small hotel – consisting of a bar, a restaurant and just 25 rooms – opened its doors to some 700 families and 1,500 children who are currently in this situation.

However, the north Dublin venue has come under fire following claims that homeless families were asked to sign a set of rules banning them from using the bar and restaurant at set times, threatening them with an 11pm curfew and not giving them permission to park in the hotel car park.

“There's nothing different whatsoever between "normal hotel guests" and those staying on a short-term basis for emergency accommodation purposes," the spokesperson, who wished to remain anonymous, said.

 “All the guests are on a first name basis with me and I always greet them and say hello.

“But we are a hotel and, as such, we adhere to publican licence rules. This applies to all of our guests.” 

One guest has claimed that the hotel staff are attempting to "hide" the homeless staying there and do not allow them to enter through the front door.

This guest has been contacted by independent.ie but has not provided a response as yet.

However, the hotelier told independent.ie that "there is a door that leads to the bar" and "a narrow sidecase that leads to the bedrooms".

“For all guests coming in late the evening, they have reception key that allows them access directly to their bedrooms," he said.

“We are a non smoking hotel and that rule must be observed for insurance and safety reasons.

The hotel spokesperson admits that there have been "tweaks" since the hotel first began to provide rooms for homeless families.

"There were rules drawn up by Dublin City Council and implemented. It was the same for all emergency accommodation. It was new for everybody."

"I do know that there are two sides to every story but all are welcomed here [at The Bram Stoker Hotel]. I actually have three thank you cards from guests who have moved on to non emergency accommodation." 

Dublin City Council has been contacted by independent.ie but has not provided a comment as at time of publishing. 

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