Bangkok's Luxury Hotel Wars Don't Seem to Be Affecting Guests, But Ugly Americans Are
Seems America isn't the world's only litigious society. There's Thailand, for example.
In Bangkok, the The Oriental has been slapped with a defamation lawsuit by the Thai Attorney General, following a libel claim from another hotel competitor, the lebua. Seems that an internal email memo sent by The Oriental's General Manager Kurt Wachtveitl last year to his hotel managers accused the lebua of poaching 26 staff members from yet another 5-star property The Peninsula Bangkok.
Oh the humanity! Can you imagine some employee actually wanting to work elsewhere, and perhaps for more money. But Wachtveitl's email, which has been reportedly sent to several other Bangkok hotel managers, was leaked to the public. Like that never happens in America.
Fearing they'd steal his own staff away, Wacthveitl instructed the following:
In order to reinforce our staff retention, do not accept any reservations (rooms or restaurants) under their names. Should you come across any management member in the hotel, please make sure they are escorted out of the premises immediately
Now the lebua' owner, Challenge Hospitality (a fitting name, no?), is seeking monetary damages from the The Oriental to the tune of 213 baht (USD $6.8 million).
We were wondering if guests at one, both, even all three luxe hotels were experiencing fallout from the in-fighting, but according to recent reviews at Trip Advisor, the only bad vibe present is the loud, obnoxious presence of the Westerners. So if you're an Ugly American headed for Bangkok luxury, watch out!