Once a darling of the fast celebrity set, Trump Soho’s association with president Donald Trump and his controversial policies has tarnished its reputation. The hotel (where rooms had cost over $700 a night) announced recently that its restaurant Koi is closing. Now, as business continues to sour, the hotel has announced layoffs.
Employees at Koi cited lack of business following the election as the primary reason for its closure.
“Before Trump won we were doing great. There were a lot of people we had, our regulars, who’d go to the hotel but are not affiliated with Trump,” said Jonathan Grullon, a host at the restaurant, told Grub Street. “And they were saying if he wins, we are not coming here anymore.”
Now, five months after the election, room prices at the hotel can be had for under $400 a night, according to WNYC. And to further cut costs managers are preparing to lay off twelve room attendants and eliminate turn-down service, two sources confirmed to WNYC.
Corporate clients have also abandoned to hotel, according to documents reviewed by WNYC. At the start of last year the hotel booked 29 corporate events with big names like Citibank, GE, and Amazon, but during the same period in 2017 the hotel had booked only 11 events.
“That sounds to me like a financially troubled hotel,” said Jan de Roos, a professor at the Cornell Hotel School. “I have to believe that a lot of organizations would not want to have meetings at a Trump Hotel just to not have to deal with it.”