Richard E Grant complains hotel quarantine 'grim' food 'feels like punishment'

Richard E Grant arriving for the world premiere of Everybody's Talking About Jamie at the Royal Festival Hall in London. Picture date: Monday September 13, 2021. (Photo by Dominic Lipinski/PA Images via Getty Images)
Richard E Grant was not impressed by the food. (Dominic Lipinski/PA Images via Getty Images)

Richard E Grant has complained that the food in his £228-a-day hotel quarantine is so "grim" that it "feels like punishment".

The Hollywood star might be used to fine dining, but he has been chowing down on a basic menu of pre-packed sandwiches and portions of chips while he waits for his isolation period to end.

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Withnail and I star Grant had been visiting his elderly mother in South Africa and is now quarantining in an airport Holiday Inn as the country is on the red travel list due to the Omicron coronavirus variant, but questioned how his meagre food allowance could be worth the £228 a day he was paying for accommodation.

Posting a photo to Instagram of a tuna and cucumber sandwich, some chips and what looks like a sausage casserole, amongst other food items, he said he was "confounded" by the pricing.

Grant, 64, wrote: "In quarantine at 4*Holiday Inn at airport (under reconstruction) at daily cost of £228. These 3 meals amount to £20 if that. Non quarantine Holiday Inn charges £89 incl breakfast. How can Gov justify this cost for ‘hospitality’ for a traveller? You do the maths, as confounds me!"

He later tweeted: "Visited my 90 yr old Mum in Southern Africa & caught by Red region restrictions. A week of multiple cancelled flights then 10 days quarantine.2 Covid tests and security costs included, but why does the food have to be so grim at a compulsory cost of £228 per day? Feels punishing!"

In another Instagram post he added that the food "feels like punishment".

Some of Grant's celebrity friends sympathised with his plight as Kristin Scott Thomas commented on the food photo: "Aaaargh. Hold fast."

This Morning chef Clodagh McKenna added: "Omg Richard… this is awful!! You poor thing… unbelievable."

However, others were less sympathetic to the situation.

Read more: UK could see 'more stringent' measures after Christmas mixing

One person commented on his tweet: "The cost is set by the hotels and catering is a local arrangement. It’s the price you pay for deciding to travel when everything is unstable. I haven’t seen my fiancé since April 2019 due to C-19 travel restrictions, but do not want to leave myself open to mandatory quarantine."

Another person added: "You complaining about the luxury’s of life, travelling in an pandemic. Is worth every penny. It should be a much higher rate including taxation to prevent unnecessary travel. Your freedom to travel comes at a cost to us that have decided to refrain."

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 15: Richard E. Grant attends the Walpole British Luxury Awards at The Dorchester on November 15, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Walpole)
The actor is currently stuck in hotel quarantine. (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Walpole)

Someone else wrote: "Sorry to hear and see this Richard. Rotten luck. And to imagine all those fabulous hotels you've stayed in. Absolutely slumming it at this holiday in. Still won't be much longer and you'll be back to the luxury you're accustomed to. Take care."

And another person commented on his Instagram post: "First world problems. You know how many people would love to be offered this? Your privilege is showing."