Tag: Andrews

Old Course Hotel in St Andrews to close from today

The Old Course Hotel in St Andrews is the latest five-star hotel to close due to increased coronavirus restrictions.

The Old Course Hotel is to close from today.
The Old Course Hotel is to close from today.

The luxury venue, which is situated next to the famous golf course in the Fife town, said that all of its bars, restaurants and spa facilities would close from today, as well as the hotel itself.

The hotel’s golf course, the Duke’s Course, will remain open.

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The closure comes just days after Gleneagles Hotel said it would close until the end of January. Fife, as well as Perth and Kinross, where Gleneagles is situated, was moved into level three lockdown last week, amid rising cases in the area. The change means that restaurants and bars cannot serve alcoholic drinks with or without a meal and must close by 6pm – although hotels can serve food to guests in their rooms until 10pm.

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Read more: Gleneagles Hotel set to close doors from Friday

The business said in a statement. “All of us at Old Course Hotel, Golf Resort & Spa really appreciate our guests and our community for helping to make the last few months enjoyable and safe.

“We are committed to the health and safety of our guests, staff, and the public, so we will be temporarily closing the Old Course Hotel from Monday 16th November. This includes hotel bars and restaurants, Kohler Waters Spa, the Pro Shop, Jigger Inn and Hams Hame.

“This is a very difficult decision for us to make, but under the current Tier 3 Covid-19 restrictions … we believe it is the right thing to do.

“We look forward to welcoming everyone back as soon as we can. In the meantime, The Duke’s Golf Course and Clubhouse, and the Fitness Centre will remain open with Covid-19 cleaning protocols and social distancing measures in place.”

It added: “We will continue to monitor updates and follow guidelines from the Scottish Government and will keep our guests and staff informed as the situation evolves. Thank you for your patience, understanding and support during this time of unprecedented uncertainty.”

​The hotel, which has 144 rooms including 35 suites, overlooks the famous links courses and the West Sands Beach. The venue said that anyone with an existing booking for November would be contacted by staff.

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Dan Andrews government gave $500k to Chinese-owned resort as part of hotel quarantine program

The Daniel Andrews government gave more than $500,000 to a Chinese-owned resort as part of its bungled hotel quarantine program, despite it never having housed a single returned traveller. 

The Sands Golf Resort Torquay received payment from the state government for 55 rooms costing $150 per room a night between March 29 and May 29, with taxpayers footing the $511,500 bill.

But the resort, owned by the Walden Cloud Group, went into administration on July 11 – owing the Australian Taxation Office over $990,000. 

The Sands isn’t the only hotel to receive money from Premier Daniel Andrews despite having never housed any returned travellers. 

The Victorian government forked out millions of dollars worth of retainer contracts to at least a dozen other hotels, The Australian reports. 

The Sands Golf Resort Torquay (pictured) received payment from the state government for 55 rooms costing $150 per room per night between March 29 and May 29, with taxpayers footing the $511,500 bill

The Sands Golf Resort Torquay (pictured) received payment from the state government for 55 rooms costing $150 per room per night between March 29 and May 29, with taxpayers footing the $511,500 bill

But the resort, owned by the Walden Cloud Group, went into administration on July 11 - owing the Australian Taxation Office over $990,000

But the resort, owned by the Walden Cloud Group, went into administration on July 11 – owing the Australian Taxation Office over $990,000

The Sands isn't the only hotel to receive money from Premier Daniel Andrews despite having never housed any returned travellers

The Sands isn’t the only hotel to receive money from Premier Daniel Andrews despite having never housed any returned travellers

Aly Boland, a former employee at The Sands, said resort staff knew the hotel wasn’t coping financially when the government awarded it a hotel quarantine contract. 

Ms Boland said employees would ‘hold their breaths’ every week to see if they would even get paid.  

‘People asked me why I was sticking around, and to be honest when we got the hotel quarantine contract, I thought, “Well at least there’s money coming in so we’ll hopefully get paid”,’ she said. 

‘There was no training, nothing. A month went by and then there was another contract, but they still didn’t pay our super, so I guess that money just went to China. Who knows?

‘I’m just a little bit taken aback by the fact that the government gave $500,000 to a company that clearly was being investigated by the ATO.’

Ms Boland also claims the company still owes her $7000 in superannuation and entitlements. 

Another employee said if anyone bothered to look over the hotel’s books, they would have realised how much the Walden Cloud Group owed to creditors. 

According to ASIC documents, the Walden Cloud Group’s directors are Chinese-born Guoxin Zhou, who lives in Torquay, and Yang Sun, also born in China, who lives in Sydney’s southwest. 

The resort had also been sanctioned by Australian Border Force for visa fraud less than a week before it received the first hotel quarantine contract from Mr Andrews. 

According to ASIC documents, the Walden Cloud Group's directors are Chinese-born Guoxin Zhou, who lives in Torquay, and Yang Sun, also born in China, who lives in Sydney's southwest

According to ASIC documents, the Walden Cloud Group’s directors are Chinese-born Guoxin Zhou, who lives in Torquay, and Yang Sun, also born in China, who lives in Sydney’s southwest

The resort had also been sanctioned by Australian Border Force for visa fraud less than a week before it received the first hotel quarantine contract from Mr Andrews

The resort had also been sanctioned by Australian Border Force for visa fraud less than a week before it received the first hotel quarantine contract from Mr Andrews

A spokesman for the Andrews government said

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Victoria’s Covid restrictions ease as Daniel Andrews reveals 25km travel bubble and scraps exercise time limit

Melbourne’s 5km travel radius will expand to 25km from midnight under eased restrictions announced by the state’s premier Daniel Andrews.



Daniel Andrews holding a sign: Photograph: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

From 11.59pm on Sunday, residents of the city who have been under lockdown for more than 100 days will be able to travel up to 25km for either exercise or shopping.

The city’s two-hour time limit for exercise and socialising will also be scrapped and groups of up to 10 people from two households will be permitted to gather outdoors.

Hairdressers and outdoor sporting facilities including tennis courts, golf courses and skate parks will reopen, and outdoor real estate auctions will recommence.

Several changes were also announced for regional Victoria, where two adults and two children will now be permitted to visit a home and hospitality venues can increase the number of patrons to 70 people outside and 40 people inside.



Daniel Andrews wearing glasses and smiling at the camera: Premier Daniel Andrews announces the easing of some restrictions on Sunday, saying Victorians had done ‘an amazing job’ during months of coronavirus lockdown.


© Photograph: Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
Premier Daniel Andrews announces the easing of some restrictions on Sunday, saying Victorians had done ‘an amazing job’ during months of coronavirus lockdown.

Andrews said on Sunday Victorians had done “an amazing job” during months of extended lockdown.

“What it means is that as so many cities across the world head into what is going to be a deadly winter, we in Melbourne and across Victoria are well-placed to have a Covid-safe summer and a Covid-normal 2021,” he said.

Restrictions to ease even further on 1 November

There will be further easing of restrictions in both Melbourne and regional Victoria from 11.59pm on Sunday 1 November.

From that date, Melbourne residents will be permitted to leave their homes for any reason, retail will reopen, hospitality venues will reopen with limits on the number of patrons, and two adults and two children will be able to visit another home once per day.

Andrews said if it was possible to make some of those changes safely before that date, the government would consider it.

The state announced another day of single figures for new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, with two cases recorded and no deaths.

Andrews hits back after federal MPs pile on premier

Andrews took aim at federal government MPs, including the health minister Greg Hunt, who have been critical of the state’s approach and called for a reopening in line with conditions in New South Wales.

“I don’t accept that anybody has a more complete picture of what this virus is doing in Victoria than the Victorian chief health officer, the Victoria deputy chief health officer, the Victorian health minister and the Victorian premier,” he said.

“My position to the Victorian communities but I’m not doing what is popular, I am doing what is safe. Because we don’t want to be back here again.”

Melbourne’s rolling 14-day case average dropped to 7.5 on Sunday, down 0.6 from Saturday.

Changes in Melbourne from 19 October

  • There will be no time limit on leaving your home for exercise or socialising.

  • The travel distance from your home will

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