More documents filed with the state of Florida reveal previously-announced layoffs at Universal Orlando’s hotels are even more extensive than first reported.
The original notices filed with the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity on Aug. 26 said a total of 1,015 workers would be terminated immediately at three Universal Orlando hotel and a nearby hotel support facility. Updated state records have added another 1,291 employees at five other Universal hotels operated by Loews Hotels & Co.
In each of the letters, Loews regional human resources director Shawn German blamed the workforce reductions on the COVID-19 pandemic and the summer surge in coronavirus cases in Florida.
“Both of these circumstances have now caused a sudden, dramatic, and unexpected reversal in bookings which now makes it clear that the demand for travel, events, and hospitality services will take substantially longer to resume than previously anticipated, which requires us to change and delay our business plans to reopen in ways that were not reasonably foreseeable as recently as days ago,” German said.
Here’s the updated tally of the 2,306 workers laid off at Universal Orlando hotels:
- 475 workers at Loews Portofino Bay Resort
- 457 workers at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort
- 311 workers at Loews Royal Pacific Resort
- 256 workers at Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn & Suites
- 200 workers at Universal’s Hard Rock Hotel
- 191 employees at Universal’s Aventura Hotel
- 176 employees at a support facility for Loews’ Universal hotels, located at 6800 Lakewood Plaza Driver
- 164 employees at Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort
- 76 workers at Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn & Suites
“Unfortunately, the global pandemic surrounding Covid-19 has forced Loews Hotels & Co to make some difficult decisions as it relates to our workforce,” said Loews spokesperson Jennifer Hodges. “Team members are the backbone of our company, and rest assured, these measures were not taken lightly.”
Loews kept two of its on-site hotels closed when Universal Orlando reopened in June: Portofino Bay and Dockside Inn & Suites, which has yet to open thanks to the pandemic. In August, Sapphire Falls and Aventura were temporarily reclosed to consolidate the reduced number of bookings at fewer hotels.
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