It turns out that the Caloocan City resort which was closed down by authorities for operating and accepting guests while under the persisting modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) didn’t even have accreditation from the Department of Tourism (DOT).
In a statement, the DOT confirmed that the Gubat sa Ciudad Resort in Barangay 171, Bagumbong was found to be operating without the agency’s accreditation.
The DOT issues accreditation certificates to tourism enterprises to officially recognize their compliance with the minimum public health standards set by the government for the operation of tourism facilities and services such as resorts.
“The department stresses the importance of transacting with DOT-accredited establishments. The DOT accreditation is an assurance that a tourism enterprise has complied with the minimum standards for the operation of tourism facilities and services,” the agency added.
It was last Sunday, May 9, when photos taken within the resort of people frolicking in the swimming pool went viral online. Around 500 individuals, including senior citizens and minors, were also seen violating rules on social distancing.
Leisure activities are currently prohibited in areas placed under MECQ. Metro Manila will remain under MECQ until May 14.
Caloocan City Mayor Oscar Malapitan promptly ordered the shutdown of the resort and the prosecution of those liable for its unauthorized operation.
The DOT lauded the “swift and resolute action“ taken by the city government of Caloocan against Gubat sa Ciudad.
It also commended Malapitan for ordering the revocation of the establishment’s business permit and its subsequent closure.
The DOT reminded the public to engage in “responsible tourism” by observing the health and safety protocols being implemented by government.