Tennis players were supposed to quarantine for two weeks at The Westin Melbourne, but since owners of 36 private penthouses in the hotel threatened legal action, the Australian Open organizers had to change the location of the two-week quarantine.
The luxury hotel initially intended to serve as the Australian Open quarantine site features residential apartments and people who live there were very angry that hundreds of players from all over the world were supposed to be accommodated there. The apartment owners stated that nobody ever asked them whether they agreed for the premises to be used for the quarantine and were ready to toss in large sums of money to help the legal fight.
After this confrontation, an alternative quarantine hotel has been secured for the athletes. However, The Age reports that Tennis Australia could be forced to compensate the owners of the Westin over the cancellation of the multimillion-dollar deal. Although, I am thinking, isn’t it the hotel’s fault that they didn’t consult the apartment owners?
The WTA players are currently playing the Abu Dhabi WTA Women’s Tennis Open in the United Arab Emirates. They are scheduled to fly to Australia in mid-January. The Australian Open starts on February 8.
I agree Marija, the Westin neglected to inform or consult with the apartment owners about the agreement with Tennis Australia to use them as a quarantine facility for the players. They should not be allowed to receive compensation from Tennis Australia. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the Australian Open will indeed be played.
Jim, I don’t know why the Westin is then asking for a compensation, it’s strange. This COVID-19 is causing so many problems and so much stress… I believe when the AO organizers say that there is no question about whether the AO will indeed be played.