Tourist Alert in the Caribbean

Another rough week in Venezuela means that Hugo Chavez has seized another hotel.

Last week government officials took control of a Hilton resort located on the island of Margarita, 40 miles off of the Venezuelan coastline. Margarita Island has been a popular hotspot with locale countrymen for decades, even attracting European tourists, Libya’s Mommar Gadhafi, and Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe in recent years, who couldn’t resist the island oasis’ 50 beaches with 100 miles of coastline.

Reports indicated that the government initiated a seize of the Margarita Hilton & Suites Hotel Complex, along with the marina owned by Inversiones Pueblamar y Desarrollos MBK when the local operators tried to enforce various conditions on the government in exchange for using it to host the South America-Africa Summit in September.

Following in the footsteps of the Hilton that was seized in Caracas in 2005, Chavez explained that the hotel would be renamed shortly, in order to reinforce a more local sound, “…because the Hilton brand is so international.”

Following the government-enforced take over, a spokeswoman for the U.S.-based Hilton brand said that the hotel on Margarita Island will remain a member of the Hilton system hotels while the corporation evaluates Venezuela’s seizure.

Via: Wall Street Journal