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Get serious about hospitality: Sliwka

Thursday, 9th April, 2015

Old Royal Hotel owner Steve Sliwka believes all local businesses need to be prepared to promote the city and open during the tourist season. Old Royal Hotel owner Steve Sliwka believes all local businesses need to be prepared to promote the city and open during the tourist season.

A local business owner says all businesses need to “have a go” and cater to tourists that visit the city.

Old Royal Hotel owner Steve Sliwka said comments made by businesses in yesterday’s BDT report surrounding staff penalty rates was “hard to fathom”.

“Anyone with a business brain would factor in prices like that throughout the year,” he argued.

Mr Sliwka said he and his wife opened over the Easter long weekend and had people coming asking about accommodation and restaurants.

“I phoned around to see who was open for accommodation. I was also sending people to the Mulga and Alfrescos for meals.

“Good Friday, I had planned to do maintenance but my parts didn’t arrive so I opened and I was glad I did.

“I had a steady clientelle all day; I could have paid for another staff member.”

Mr Sliwka said the city needed to change from thinking it was a mining town to a tourism town.

“If we don’t, the community will suffer in the long run,” he said.

He said one solution might be for businesses to come up with a roster to ensure at least some shops were open during holiday periods.

“I’m thinking a roster with one or two coffee shops open might benefit.

“I feel that there is an attitude that businesses are only about themselves.

“But they have to help themselves, as well as promoting other businesses.”

Mr Sliwka said it was important to do what was best for the community.

“We need to come up with something and have a go,” he said.

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