Suspicions raised over tourist who alleged abuse at Jetwing Kaduruketha

Suspicions have been raised over a tourist who alleged abuse at Jetwing Kaduruketha recently.

In a media statement, Jetwing Hotel said that a couple, residing at the hotel for two nights, had booked a massage on the evening of the 2nd day.

It was brought to the attention of the Hotel General Manager that an incident took place after the lady had a 75-minute massage at the Spa of the Hotel, performed by a male therapist.

At the point of making the reservation, the guest was informed there was only a male therapist available at the time and she agreed to proceed with the massage.

“The General Manager met with the guest for 1 hour and listened to the lady in the presence of a gentleman (her partner), and recorded the incident in question, which as per the lady’s description involved some massage of un-wanted nature,” the hotel said.

Assuming the guest was right, the General Manager apologized for what had happened, assured that necessary steps would be taken to investigate the matter with the associate who performed the massage, and it was agreed between the couple and the hotel General Manager to review the matter in the morning, once the situation would be clearer.

Incidentally, the General manager offered a complimentary dinner on the same evening, which was accepted by the couple.

The General Manager reported the incident to the higher management and a decision was made to wait until the next morning to assess the situation with the couple, as previously agreed between the couple and the hotel General Manager.

The next morning the General manager contacted the higher management, namely the Director Operations of the group, and passed on his phone to the couple.

The lady, while on speaker phone with the gentleman listening, described what had happened, in French language. The Director Operations explained that steps had already been taken to investigate the matter with the associate in question and offered to assist the guest to make an entry to the police. The couple declined the offer to make an entry to the police, and instead requested that some compensation be given.

The couple had booked two nights through Jetwing online and they requested to waive off the charges. They then said that they want to stay an extra night, which the hotel says they found strange considering what they claimed happened, and requested that additional night also to be given free.

“As it is our policy that the guest is always right, our Director Operations agreed to their requests even though we could not find any conclusive evidence of wrong doing by our therapist who was being questioned by the management and police,” the hotel said.

Jetwing then requested for a written statement from the lady in order for them to continue with the investigation. At this stage, the issue seemed settled as they did not want to pursue anymore and had received the compensation they requested.

Four hours after the initial conversation with the couple and the agreed settlement, the gentleman contacted the Director Operations, and in a very aggressive manner stated that he was finally not in agreement with what was offered and felt the situation was not handled as per his expectations.

The Director Operations reassured the guest that the matter was being investigated, as the allegations were of a serious nature, and that steps were been taken to ensure the matter would be dealt with seriously with the associate in question.

At this point, as the hotel was not in a position to do anything further and the gentleman was talking aggressively, the Director Operations suggested that he make a police entry, as previously proposed, to which he agreed.

Full assistance was given to the guest to go the police station, with the General Manager accompanying the couple and staying throughout their deposition. While at the police station, the gentleman contacted the Director Operations on a few occasions over the phone for assistance, due to their limited English, and full assistance was extended.

Once the deposition was recorded by the police the gentleman stated to the Director Operations that they were satisfied with the outcome as they believed the necessary course of action would be taken by the police. After this, the guests returned to the hotel with the General Manager.

The next morning, the Hotel General Manager accompanied the couple back to the police station to obtain an official document from the police confirming that an entry had been made at the police station, and, in addition, they requested to have an insurance document stamped by the police. The couple did not wish the hotel General manager to stay with them at the police station and returned to the hotel a few hours later, on their own.

Guests did not contact the hotel General Manager neither the Director Operations after returning to the hotel and checked out late in the afternoon.

It is to be noted that the associate in question has been working at the hotel in the capacity of Spa therapist for the last 3 years and has no record of any issues as such, despite having performed numerous massages on ladies in the past, as evidenced by the hotel’s records.

The Police produced the Spa therapist to the Magistrates Court and after an inquiry by the Magistrate, the Spa therapist was released on bail and the next date of the court hearing is on the 26th of February. We await the court determination on this complaint.

“Our view is that the lady’s statement kept changing every time she spoke to us. This we find very strange, as she went through the massage with the male therapist for 75 minutes, thanked him and said she will come back the next day. We have monitored the CCTV footage and during the exit from the spa she shows no distress. Furthermore, the reception is adjoining the spa which would have helped her to escalate the issue immediately,” Jetwing Hotel said.

With all the doubtful behaviour, Jetwing Hotel said that they still gave the benefit of the doubt to the guest based on the values and principles of the hotel.

Jetwing Hotel said they will await the outcome of the police investigation and the court hearing. (Colombo Gazette)

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