The boycott has arisen after a law was passed in Brunei advocating the stoning of homosexuals. Officials in Brunei say that the penal code will be enforced “in the very near future.”
The protest started last week when an LGBT organisation cancelled a conference it had organised at the Dorchester Collection’s Beverly Hills Hotel. The boycott soon spread to London thanks to Fry who took to Twitter to urge his 6.7 million followers to shun The Dorchester whose high profile past guests include Marlene Dietrich, General Dwight Eisenhower and Tom Cruise.
“Not that you were necessarily going to stay there, but time to boycott the Dorchester Group,” he tweeted.
The British actor also revealed – via Twitter – that he had scrapped his reservation with Coworth Park in Ascot (near Windsor) upon realising that the high-end spa hotel was part of the Dorchester chain.
Elsewhere Ellen DeGeneres tweeted: “I won’t be visiting the Hotel Bel-Air or the Beverly Hills Hotel until this is resolved.”
And celebrated shoe designer, Brian Atwood, added: “Don’t stay at […] the Dorchester during Milan, Paris or London Fashion Weeks this June to October. Send a clear signal to their owner, the Sultan of Brunei, that stoning people to death for being gay in Brunei is not acceptable.”
A spokesperson for The Dorchester Collection responded by telling WWD: “We are aware that many variations of Sharia law are practiced in many countries throughout the world and these countries have diverse business interests including fashion, hospitality and travel groups, media, entertainment, banking and many other sectors.”
We are sensitive to the fact that any such potential withdrawal of business directly impacts our employees, who represent the full diversity of society. We continue to abide by the laws of the countries we operate in and do not tolerate any form of discrimination of any kind.”