China’s luxury hotels under scrutiny over basic hygiene practice

China’s luxury hotels under scrutiny over basic hygiene practice

The Chinese tourism ministry said late Thursday that it had asked authorities in Beijing, Shanghai and three provinces to investigate 14 hotels that appear in the video.

Despite their luxury standards and high price tags, cleaning staff were shown wiping down in-room cups with the same towels and sponges used to clean showers and toilets.

Some of the hotels mentioned in the video were the Waldorf Astoria Shanghai, the recently opened Bulgari Hotel Shanghai, the Park Hyatt Beijing and the Aman Summer Palace Luxury Resort in Beijing. The housekeeper then takes the same sponge and cleans the toilet, according to text shown in the video.

Hilton and Marriott group properties were among the 14 luxury hotels included in the video.

The Ritz-Carlton in Shanghai said it carried out an investigation after the video exposed one of its cleaners, who had been found using the same towel to clean the shower glass, floor, counter and cups.

The almost 12-minute video, posted online earlier this week, shows workers cleaning bathrooms.

"But the actual practices on that day did not follow the cleaning standards for room cleaning, we are deeply sorry for this", the hotel apologized in a statement posted to its Weibo account, adding staff would be retrained.

The Peninsula hotel in Beijing said Friday that city inspectors had tested its cups and found they were cleaner than standards required. Afraid that the woman might lose her job, he opted not to report the incident - and even after making his video, Huazong stressed to Sixth Tone: "These employees should not be blamed; rather, it should be [the hotels' responsibility] to recognize and correct any hygiene problems".

On Weibo, users lambasted the hotels and the recurrent health and safety problems.

This is not the first time that well-known hotels have failed basic hygiene checks in China. Housekeepers' meager salaries, meanwhile, put them on the very bottom rung of the service industry.

"Luckily I can not afford to stay in any of these hotels", one commenter said in an online post responding to the video. "I'm so glad that a 5,000-yuan hotel is just as dirty as a 500-yuan one".

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