By Andy Sambidge
Hyatt Plaza shopping centre is latest in Doha to launch family-only days.
Shopping malls in Qatar have declared war on "bad-smelling" bachelors as an increasing number of retail complexes implement family-only days.The Hyatt Plaza shopping mall in Doha is the latest in a line of retail centres in the capital to announce the new policy, making it more difficult for single men to enter any of the leading shopping centres in the city on weekends.
From this week onwards, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays will be off limit to single men, from 4pm-10pm, as management decided to “curb the ever-increasing movement of bachelors” on its premises, Gulf Times reported on Sunday.
The ban will be for “bad-smelling, poorly-dressed adult men” but it would not affect those who do not fall in this category, a senior executive told the paper.
I, and I am sure many others, want to see such rules here as well .
woe to the man who is tasked to screen such individuals . the malls will have to have a standby respiratory support with fresh oxygen for him.
Hygiene may be both social and personal responsibility. But stopping foul-smelling or poorly-dressed folks from entering malls is a pigment of moral pretense and hypocrisy. You can't uproot the tree from its trunks, but from the roots. The call for good hygiene of workers should begin from companies who hired, or families who sponsored them. Couldn't proper hygiene and grooming also be an interesting part of the ''pre-departure orientation programs'' set by the recruiters and ticketing agencies from countries of origin, could they?..
In a country bereft of many other entertainment spots, I fail to understand such a rule. Isnt this again targetting a particular segment of the population? Expats labourers from the Asian sub-continent! To be barred from the only spots of entertainment on their only day off isnt being fair to them. How are they to entertain themselves? I understand that some of the families may have concerns that these bachelors may be looking at the women in their family in a lecherous manner, but believe me that holds true for many other well dressed and clean men - bachelor or not! Prior to having such rules shouldnt alternate arrangements be made for their weekend entertainment too considering that they form a very a large part of the population. Aint they humans with needs to relax and unwind after a long week of hard back breaking labour?
So does that mean that white western blokes in tatty shorts, rancid singlets, unshaven, tatttoed arms, smelling of beer and cigarettes, will not be allowed in? Sounds good to me. But I somehow know that the selection will be purely by ethnicity, not by the alleged degree of shabbiness ...
I was unsure if this was racism until I read the last line. "...The ban will be for â€œbad-smelling, poorly-dressed adult menâ€ but it would not affect those who do not fall in this category, a senior executive told the paper." Why stop at singling out bad-smelling, poorly-dressed adult men. There are plenty of women who coat themselves in excess perfume that fall into the bad-smelling category. What makes them so special that they don't get excluded? This rule is only about excluding the sub-continent / Asian laborer, nothing more, nothing less, and all associated with it should be ashamed! I, for one, hope that nothing like this is ever implemented anywhere else in the world, much less Dubai. SJ
I'm afraid this is just another nail in the coffin of how life used to be in this part of the world. Gone are the old free-wheeling days when it was live and let live. Now, hardly a day goes past without some decree or decision that little by little is taking away the open way we used to live. Progress, I suppose. I well remember standing on Jebel Ali 30 years ago and seeing nothing but open desert. It's sad really, that the whole UAE Arabian Gulf coast is growing into one long connurbation. Sad, sad, sad.