Since Donald Trump became President of the United States, most of his hotels have seen a loss in business. Whether it’s due to a political difference of opinion or a disapproval of how the President has personally acted on many occasions, most of the hotels that have bared his name haven’t seen as much business as a year ago.
Trump’s hotel in SoHo is planning on rebranding to another name that won’t include Trump’s name so that the connotations of the President won’t be in the public eye. It’s important to note that Trump doesn’t own this hotel, but does license his name out to them for the hotel. According to one staffer at the Trump SoHo, they told the New York Times that things started to go downhill when LeBron James publicly refused to stay at the Trump SoHo hotel for a game against the Knicks last December.
But the glitter masked a challenging reality, according to a longtime member of the staff who asked not to be named because employees had signed a nondisclosure agreement. After LeBron James publicly refused to stay at the hotel last year, the corporate clients and 20 or so sports teams that had been regular guests almost entirely disappeared, the staff member said. Porters whose base salaries were once buoyed by up to $60,000 a year in gratuities have earned half as much in tips.
Many employees, some of whom are immigrants from countries targeted by Mr. Trump’s policies, quit, the staff member said.
While Trump’s name has attracted a few guests to stay since he was elected President, more seem to not be as enthusiastic to be staying in his hotels.
In addition to LeBron and the Cleveland Cavs, the Washington Post reported that five NBA teams and two NHL teams have stopped staying in Trump hotels over this recent offseason and have made new plans this season. This was after six NBA teams, the Tampa Bay Lightning and LA Dodgers made different plans at various points over the past three years even though many gave non-political reasons why they had left.
Has LeBron James caused a mass exodus of people staying in Trump hotels? I highly doubt it. If anyone feels that strongly about not staying at Trump’s hotels due to what’s happened in the past year or two, I would think they did that for their own reasons and not simply because LeBron did it. If anything, like many people around the same time, LeBron was simply looking at other luxury hotels to stay in that doesn’t have the President’s name on the building.