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Sussex hotel pays out for bed bugs nightmare
3:10pm Monday 11th February 2013 in News
A luxury hotel group has apologised and compensated a guest whose holiday was ruined by bed bugs which left him covered in bites and blood.
Michael Hatch, 74, had booked into the £120-a-night Hilton at Gatwick Airport with wife Helen ahead of their trip to Spain.
But during the night he found himself under attack from a legion of the blood-sucking insects which left his body covered in a large number of tiny sores.
Retired electrician Michael immediately complained and was refunded the cost of his room.
But his £800 holiday last October was ruined when he was forced to stay out of the sun for the entire trip because of fears about his health.
Mr Hatch said: “It was a nightmare, it ruined my holiday. I went to bed and woke up to find blood all over the sheets. I had bites all over me.
“I was staying overnight ahead of my holiday. I had no idea what the insects were but when I squeezed one lots of blood came out.
“I panicked a bit as there was blood everywhere. It would sting when I went in the shower and was all very uncomfortable.
“I couldn’t sunbathe because I was worried. It upset Helen too because we couldn’t really enjoy our holiday.”
Apology and refund
The Hilton apologised and refunded Michael for his room but he asked a friend to pursue the hotel giant for compensation and was eventually given £750.
A spokesman for Hilton Worldwide said: “We take allegations of bedbugs extremely seriously.
“As soon as we were alerted to this issue we immediately brought in specialist contractors, who subsequently isolated and eradicated the problem.
“We would like to reiterate our regret that such an incident occurred and as a gesture of goodwill we have reimbursed and compensated our guest for the distress and inconvenience caused.
"Whilst they are rare, bed bugs can come into the hotel in luggage or on clothing, and in the unlikely event that a guest suspects a problem we have strict procedures in place to address any concerns.”
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