Many workers – particularly from the travel and hospitality industry – have either lost their jobs or been forced to take a pay cut due to the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak.
Due to travel restrictions that is expected to last for awhile, a couple of Kuala Lumpur’s finest hotel owners are now opting to put their properties up for sale.
To date, Malaysian Association of Hotel Owners executive director Shaharuddin M Saaid said that approximately 20 hotels had already close down. Over the past few weeks, several 5 star KL hotels have been listed on iProperty, where the asking price is between RM350 million to RM1.7 billion.
Even before the movement control order (MCO) was implemented, a few hotel owners had already made preparations to sell their properties. Since recovery period will take roughly 6 months to 1 year, Shaharuddin explained that many industry players are opting out and pursuing other options.
“We cannot rely on international tourism as other countries are also affected by the virus and there are flight restrictions. As for domestic tourism, the volume isn’t really there, especially if you are talking about higher-end properties, because many people’s incomes have been affected,” he was quoted as saying.
“We can’t host meetings and events, there are restrictions for dining in, you can’t swim or use the gym – who would want to pay to stay at a hotel?” Shaharuddin added. Since hotels can’t even operate at full capacity, buyers may turn them into serviced apartments or even commercial buildings.
Even before the pandemic took effect, the hotel industry has been suffering due to the rise of Airbnb, budget hotels, and rental of properties. The Covid-19 situation is simply the final nail in the coffin.
Source: Tin Media.