Labor crunch delays opening of five-star hotel

  • 2007-07-18
  • From wire reports
TALLINN - The opening of a five-star hotel in downtown Tallinn has been delayed due to the market's endemic labor problems, according to reports.
The Swissotel was originally slated to open its doors in early summer, but the ribbon-cutting ceremony was postponed for unclear reasons. Hotel management refused to offer an explanation, according to the daily Postimees.

Urmas Oobik, a spokesman for Swissotel Tallinn, said that the hotel would open its doors by the end of summer, at which time the hotel would make a statement on its future plans.
However, unofficial information points to delays in completing construction and hiring necessary staff.
Large and small hotels in the Baltic state are actively looking for workers, but the dearth of employees in the hospitality industry has never been so acute as to disrupt the work of some accommodation establishment.
Donald Visnapuu, manager of the Estonian Hotel and Restaurant Association, said that shortage of work force probably was the reason for the delay, though not the only one.

"The hotel's doors are staying closed as a result of the lack of construction workers caused by the construction boom," Visnapuu said, adding that the same problem was delaying the completion of several other hotels.
The Swissotel is suffering from delays in the delivery of furniture, a problem that is not uncommon in the hotel business, Visnapuu said. 

Swissotel Tallinn Estonia will operate in a newly built complex in Tornimae Street next to the Stockmann department store in downtown Tallinn consisting of twin 28-story towers.
The 238-room hotel will be operated by EKE Invest. In all, 26 hotels worldwide operate under the Swissotel Hotels & Resorts brand.