The Windsor Hotel in South Perth has drawn media attention over the last week, with patrons under 21 banned on Friday and Saturday nights from the hotel’s Garden Bar, after a specific group of people were continuously causing damage to the newly renovated area. Hotel manager Max Fox-Andrews spoke to Australian Hotelier to clarify the situation.

The Windsor Hotel has drawn some very strong opinions on the decision to ban people under 21 from the venue. However Fox-Andrews has clarified the situation, saying the ban is temporary and only for a specific group of people who had repeatedly displayed anti-social behaviour at the venue.

“The ban that I put in place is a temporary ban, it’s more of a threat than an actual action. But it’s in the Garden Bar, which is a nice new bar that we’ve just spent lots of money on doing up, and that was only on Friday and Saturday nights after 10pm, which was when the troublemakers were turning up.”

Fox-Andrews explained that the specific group of young people would show up every weekend, often having pre-loaded, and cause damage to the newly renovated Garden Bar. The hotel manager said that the ban of these youths was the last resort after several other strategies had failed to keep them out.

With sixteen entrances to the venue, it was very difficult to monitor when and where they were gaining entry to the hotel. With the ban, came negative Facebook reviews from those young patrons, giving the hotel the names and images of the people that Fox-Andrews wanted to keep out of the hotel. As a result, The Windsor Hotel has also temporarily disabled the review feature from its Facebook page.

Community support

Fox-Andrews has been firmly standing his ground on the strategy in the face of the attention, and said that he has received support from other patrons, other venues in the area, and Liquor Licensing.

“The support from [Liquor Licensing] has been immense. They came in last week, we had a great chat. They said you’ve obviously tried everything, you’ve done everything you can do as a venue.

“The support has been immense, even from other hospitality venues, but also from other patrons. I’ve been inundated with messages thanking me, saying how great it is to come to The Windsor again, and how [the anti-social behaviour] had been putting them off.”

While standing by the strategy, Fox-Andrews is happy to reconsider the temporary ban, if those patrons are willing to change their behaviour. One of the young patrons visited the hotel manager to apologise for his behaviour and Fox-Andrews was willing to open up a dialogue.

“I’ve given him my number. I’ve asked him to speak to the other ringleaders. The beginning process would be for them to remove the reviews.”

Fox-Andrews said that he’s willing to lift the ban if those patrons are willing to change their behaviour.

“As long as they behave! That’s all we’re asking. I’ve tried to meet these guys, I’ve tried all I could within my power. We want people to come and have a good time. But have a good time and don’t ruin it for everybody else.”

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