The Fitzgerald family
THE doors of the Fitzgerald Woodlands House Hotel closed after breakfast this Monday morning.
It was, hotel director David Fitzgerald said, the hardest decision they had ever had to make.
But, he added, it was the right decision and a necessary one.
“We told our staff yesterday and we announced it this morning,” Mr Fitzgerald added.
The closure affects 250 full-time and part-time staff.
“At the moment, I am in the ballroom with my team, getting them to fill in the paperwork for unemployment payments,” he explained.
Earlier, David’s sister, Elaina, who is the new president of the Irish Hotels Federation, announced the closure on Twitter, saying:
“Amidst the backdrop of the pandemic that is Covid-19, we as a family have taken the agonising decision today to close our hotel doors this morning until the end of March as temporary and precautionary measure to protect our team, our guests, our families and our communities.”
The closure of the Woodlands is expected to be the first of a number of hotel closures and follows on the closure of all bars and pubs until the end of March. A number of restaurants are expected to follow suit although some are hoping to continue by providing carry-out meals and/or enhancing social distancing measures.