Bencoolen Street hostel suspended for 30 days for leisure bookings
Hawaii Hostel ordered to close until Nov 9 in one of strictest penalties so far
In one of the toughest penalties to date, a hostel has been ordered to suspend operations for 30 days for flouting Covid-19 safe management measures.
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) ordered Hawaii Hostel in Bencoolen Street to suspend operations from Oct 11 to Nov 9 after investigations revealed it had permitted more than 260 guests to check in for leisure purposes since Sept 17.
Hostel operators are reminded that leisure bookings are not permitted. They should also comply with all safe management measures to safeguard the health and well-being of our people and prevent new clusters from forming, STB said.
STB said yesterday its officers also found Hawaii Hostel previously made false statements to safe distancing ambassadors, stating its customers were long-term guests instead of guests on leisure bookings.
It had also failed to record its guests' purpose of stay.
The hostel is not permitted to accept new bookings or accept check-ins during suspension.
As hostels are close-living quarters where non-related individuals are likely to come into close contact with one another in enclosed spaces and for prolonged periods, there is a high risk for virus transmission associated with the physical setting.
STB's regular enforcement checks also found two establishments conducting business despite not being permitted to do so. On Oct 9, STB officers found that 72 Mad Monk, a bar at Concorde Shopping Centre, was open despite not having a valid food shop licence. It also let customers play pool and consume alcohol past 10.30pm.
On Oct 10, STB officers conducted checks at Kris Bollywood in Concorde Hotel and found two people consuming alcohol past 10.30pm. Both business are under investigation.
Under the Covid-19 (Temporary Measures) Act 2020, first-time offenders may be fined up to $10,000. Subsequent offences may be fined up to $20,000.
Between Oct 6 and 14, STB issued fines ranging from $300 to $1,000 to 16 people for failing to wear a mask. Since the start of phase two, checks have been stepped up at tourism establishments and precincts.
Five food and beverage establishments were also fined for breaching safe management measures this month.
Four of them - Bagus Sio Good at #01-07A Far East Plaza, Chuan Yang Ji Mutton Soup Steamboat at 211 South Bridge Road, The Hot Gathering at 32 Upper Cross Street and Komala's Restaurant at 330 Serangoon Road - had failed to ensure 1m safe distancing between seated customers.
The fifth, Beauty In The Pot at #05-16 The Centrepoint, had accepted a booking of six people at the same table, one more than the five allowed under the law.