48-year-old Taipei hotel forced out of business by coronavirus

Stylish Leofoo Hotel to close permanently in May as epidemic hammers Taiwan’s hospitality industry

Leofoo Hotel to shutter its doors in May. (Leofoo Hotel photo)

Leofoo Hotel to shutter its doors in May. (Leofoo Hotel photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — As the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to haunt Taiwan's tourism industry, the long-established Leofoo Hotel (六福客棧) in Taipei's Zhongshan District has become the latest victim of the outbreak and announced its permanent closure in May.

Following the Taiwan Travel Quality Assurance Association's (TQAA) prediction last week that more than 90 percent of Taiwanese travel agencies would shut down if the virus persists till December, Leofoo Hotel said Monday (March 9) that it will end operations on May 31. The 48-year-old hotel, known for its traditional Chinese style decor and convenient location, said that the land will be used for the construction of a commercial building instead.

The hotel's parent company, Leofoo Tourism Group, said it had been planning to refurbish the building and continue operations until at least 2021 but that the slow business caused by the virus has forced it to call it quits. The group expressed gratitude to its customers and emphasized that it will provide compensation to the staff, reported CNA.

Leofoo Tourism Group explained that customers who have purchased vouchers for accommodations or the buffet can ask for a full refund at the front desk. It added that after May, any unused vouchers will be treated as cash at affiliated businesses, including Courtyard by Marriott Taipei and the Leofoo Village Theme Park, reported Now News.

Leofoo Hotel known for its traditional style decor. (Leofoo Hotel photo)