SA's hotel industry is facing an uphill battle to recover after almost a year of restrictions on travel and gatherings - and the prospects for staff either returning to work or earning full pay are still dim. The move to level 1 lockdown this week, which enables larger gatherings and lifts most restrictions on the sale of alcohol, may help, and Easter could also bring in new business. Jeremy Clayton, executive director of the President Hotel in Cape Town, said this Easter season was "critical to [the hotel's] survival". The hotel has seen a healthy uptick in bookings and no increase in cancellations, but is only forecasting a 50% occupancy rate. Previously it would have been between 80% and 90% full during the season.Likewise, at City Lodge Hotel Group, bookings are improving.Lindiwe Sangweni-Siddo, COO at City Lodge Hotel Group, said: "Bookings for the Easter weekend, April 2 to April 5, are picking up and are currently at higher occupancy rates than the rest of the weekends in...

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