The Gadsden Hotel is one of the most well-known attractions in Douglas, but on December 27 about 70% of its employees were laid off which sparked community outrage and concern.

One of the hotels co-owners, Ken Sandhu said the hotel lost about $200,000 dollars this past year and they have decided to redirect their spending towards renovating the hotel.

During this time the hotels restaurant and tavern will be closed.

We planned to close it for a week only, but during that week we thought that since we have a renovation permit, we should just shut down for a while and then reopen, Sandhu said.

There is not yet a time frame for the reopening of the tavern and restaurant.

The hotel currently has 22 rooms available to guests, but they plan to renovate three more floors of rooms. The top floor will all be suites. The hotels lobby will not undergo any changes.

However, with these changes came the layoff of most of the hotels employees.

This is sad news that a few of the people had to go, but we didnt have a choice, Sandhu said. Running a business in a small town is not that easy.

Douglas Mayor Donald Huish said he feels for the people that were impacted by the layoffs.

He said, Im very pained and sorry that this happened at this particular time. Its hard anytime to lose employment, but especially at this time.

According to Sandhu, the hotel only kept 10 of their 33 staff members. They are front desk clerks, housekeeping and maintenance staff. He said they will rehire staff once the renovations are completed.

We will make a public announcement and we will give everybody an opportunity to come back and fill out an application, Sandhu said.

The hotel will remain open for room reservations and special events during the renovation period.


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