Deputy Minister of Interior and Police and director of the Alcoholic Beverages Control Program Jose Pantaleon Maria Arias says that all the bars, clubs and nightspots that operate within a resort or hotel, like the Hotel Hispaniola, aren't required to obey alcohol decree if they are a five-star hotel. This effectively allows them to sell alcohol without any restrictions. Quoted in Listin Diario, Arias responded to claims made by the Bars and Restaurants Association that the Ministry of Interior and Police is allowing the LED Nightclub on the premises of the Hispaniola Hotel to operate without any restrictions. According to the Association, this is unfair competition with other popular nightclubs that have to close at midnight or at 2am on weekends. The Deputy Minister said that if they wanted to operate like LED they should move their business inside a hotel.
So, how long before the gay folks invade a hotel on the malecon?
The Ministry of Tourism has sent the Interior and Police Ministry a memo stating that the Hispaniola Hotel is not a five-star hotel as had been reported. This means that LED night club, located within the hotel, and which operates 24 hours a day, despite the time limits on alcohol sales currently in place, might be closed or forced to adjust their club schedule. Last week it was reported that any disco could operate 24 hours a day if it is located within a five-star hotel. Tourism Minister Felix Jimenez said that the Lina and Jaragua Hotels have been offered the exemptions, but neither is interested. LED will continue operating as usual until investigations are complete.