Inês Chan Lou, who heads the Licensing and Inspection Department of the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO), said during Monday’s press conference that as of the end of last month the government had spent some MOP 70 million (US$8.77 million) on quarantine facilities set up at local hotels.
At the peak in late March, there were 12 “quarantine hotels” with about 3,000 guestrooms when some 2,800 people were undergoing their 14 days of quarantine and medical observation. Since early April, most of the 12 hotels have returned to their normal hospitality role one after another once all those who completed their 14-day quarantine and medical observation had checked out.
Early last month, the 298-room Pousada Marina Infante hotel in Cotai became the only remaining “quarantine hotel” still operating after the other 11 hotels had returned to their normal hospitality roles. The government reopened a “quarantine hotel” on Sunday night – a section of the Sheraton Grand hotel in Cotai – as the Pousada Marina Infante hotel no longer had rooms available because more people have recently been required to undergo their 14 days of quarantine and medical observation in a government-arranged quarantine facility. The section of the Sheraton Grand hotel comprising 500 rooms – officially known as “special isolated area” – was previously used as a designated hotel for quarantine and medical observation purposes.
Chan also said that the government had decided to reopen the section of the Sheraton Grand hotel as the additional “quarantine hotel” as it has more guestrooms compared to the other previous “quarantine hotels”, so as to ensure that there will be sufficient quarantine guestrooms for local residents studying overseas and planning to return to Macao for their summer break – whom the local government is planning to pick up from Hong Kong’s airport later this month upon their arrival there.
Chan said that about 400 Macao residents were slated to return to Macao in the second half of this month.