Briton describes 'holiday from hell' inside virus-hit Tenerife hotel

A British holidaymaker told to stay inside a Tenerife hotel has said she is having a "holiday from hell" after an Italian doctor there was diagnosed with coronavirus.

Guests at the four-star H10 Costa Adeje Palace in the south west of the island have been sent a letter saying the hotel is "closed down" and they must remain in their rooms until further notice.

Travel firms Tui and Jet2holidays are among those who use use the hotel for package holidays, with Tui having around 200 guests there from different countries, including a small number from the UK.

Hannah Green, 27, from Hertfordshire, arrived at the hotel on Saturday with her boyfriend, Court Amys, and their one-year-old son. They are supposed to be staying until Sunday.

She told the PA news agency that communication had been "non-existent", adding: "We woke up to a note under our door this morning saying that for health reasons not to leave our room.

"I called downstairs to reception as soon as I saw it and they wouldn't tell us anything. So I quickly got on my phone and googled and saw a man had tested positive for coronavirus so I basically assumed it was that.

"But since then, we've had nothing from the hotel – no one has told us anything or what's going to happen."

Ms Green said she booked her holiday with Tui, adding: "I've called them as well and they haven't really said much either. They were just going on what the hotel's been telling them, basically, and the hotel wouldn't tell them anything either.

"People are moving around the hotel but we're not. We're in our room with the baby. We're worried for the baby."

A sandstorm in Tenerife
A sandstorm in Tenerife (Sophie Barley/PA)

Ms Green said she would like to go home but added: "I don't think we'll be allowed to leave. We don't want to be here. We're fed up now."

She said a sandstorm at the weekend had also confined them to their rooms.

"The sandstorm was the day after we arrived, Sunday, so we had to stay in the hotel then," she said. "Holiday from hell, honestly."

She said the couple were amusing themselves by watching TV and films on their laptop.

The H10 Costa Adeje Palace is a seafront hotel with nearly 500 rooms, four pools and a gym.

The Italian doctor, who had travelled with his wife, tested positive on Monday and has been placed in isolation in hospital, local media reported, while the El Pais newspaper said about 1,000 guests were affected by the lockdown.

HEALTH Coronavirus
(PA Graphics)

Another couple, David Hoon, 60, and Pamela Scott, 63, from Matlock, Derbyshire, who also travelled with Tui, told the MailOnline they were surviving on meagre snacks.

Mr Hoon said: "Nobody is telling us what's going on, how long this is going to last and who is going to feed us. The way this has been handled is a disgrace.

"The hotel is like a ghost house and my fear is that by trapping us inside it, we stand more chance of catching the coronavirus. This whole thing is very worrying."

Fellow British tourist Christopher Betts said guests had been allowed to have breakfast in the hotel restaurant on Tuesday morning but were otherwise told to stay in their rooms.

A spokeswoman for Tui UK said: "We can confirm that Tui has around 200 customers in the resort from different countries. Tui representatives on Tenerife are present on site and will liaise with our customers.

"All guests have been asked to remain in their rooms and are being looked after by the hotel.

"Our holiday programme to Tenerife continues to operate as planned for all other hotels."

Police outside the H10 Costa Adeje Palace
Police outside the H10 Costa Adeje Palace (AP)

A spokesman for Jet2 said: "We are aware of reports that a non-Jet2holidays customer staying at the H10 Costa Adeje Palace in Tenerife has tested positive for coronavirus.

"Under the advice of the regional and the Spanish government authorities, the hotel has been placed under quarantine."

A statement from the hotel said it has "implemented all health and operational recommendations from the health authorities to ensure the safety and wellbeing of customers and employees".

"Additionally, we are providing customers and hotel staff all the necessary care and attention so that, despite the inconveniences this situation may cause, they are taken care of in the best way possible."

A Foreign Office spokesman said its staff was offering advice and support to a number of British people at the hotel and their families.

It comes as travellers returning to the UK from northern Italy were told they may need to self-isolate as part of measures to stop the spread of the Covid-19 disease caused by coronavirus.

Symptoms of Covid-19 include a cough, fever and shortness of breath.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said official advice has been changed to say that those who have been to anywhere in Italy north of Pisa should self-isolate if they develop flu-like symptoms on their return to the UK.

Britons who have been in locked down regions of Italy – including Lombardy and Veneto – should self-isolate at home for 14 days even if they have no symptoms.

The advice comes as the Department of Health added Iran, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Burma and parts of northern Italy to the list of places where travellers need to follow clinical advice.

In Italy, 229 people have tested positive for coronavirus and seven have died.

Schools have been closed in affected areas, theatre performances cancelled, and Venice Carnival celebrations were called off, while producers said filming on the latest Mission: Impossible movie starring Tom Cruise has been halted.

Mr Hancock told the BBC the Government was not aware of any Britons who were in the quarantined areas of northern Italy, but urged anyone there to make contact with the embassy in Rome.

(PA Graphics)
(PA Graphics)

He added that the UK has done a "huge amount" of work preparing in case coronavirus becomes a pandemic, including setting up testing facilities outside A&Es and preparing home testing kits.

The government also confirmed the Heathrow Ariel Hotel had been designated an isolation facility for a potential quarantine alongside Arrowe Park Hospital on the Wirral and Kents Hill Park in Milton Keynes, which have both been used to accommodate British nationals returning from China and Japan.

Meanwhile, England's chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty said schools could be shut and public transport reduced if coronavirus became a global pandemic.

He said: "There's no secret there's a variety of things you need to look at at, you look at things like school closures, you look at things like reducing transport.

"The expectation is not that we will do all these things, the expectation is we will be looking systematically, using the science, at all the building blocks and balancing the effects against costs to society."

Prof Whitty said families could also be asked to self-isolate if one of them had symptoms of the virus.

China has reported 77,658 cases and 2,663 deaths, while South Korea has the second highest number of cases with 893 and eight deaths.

Former UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon said initial measures in China and other countries to tackle the outbreak might have been "insufficient".

Speaking at the very first Global Soft Power Summit in London, he added: "The initial measures from China or elsewhere might have been insufficient or inadequate, so that's why it has spread without any stopping.

"I believe that every country is really trying their best effort at this time, including my own country Korea, not to mention China.

"I have full confidence that China's people in government will be able to overcome this with a strong commitment."