The Human Rights Campaign, which last week called for a boycott of the Beverly Hills Hotel and the Hotel Bel-Air, on Tuesday asked both properties to stop promoting services for gay and lesbian couples seeking to wed at the venues.
HRC, the largest LGBT lobbying organization, is protesting the sultan of Brunei’s plans to impose a strict set of new punishments in his country that include stoning of those caught in gay and lesbian relationships and flogging of women who have abortions. The two Los Angeles hotels are owned by a Brunei sovereign fund controlled by the country’s government.
HRC posted an image of a “Gay Weddings Los Angeles” page on the Dorchester Collection’s website, offering consulting services as well as complimentary menu tasting, a night’s stay for newly married spouses and champagne and strawberries for wedding nights.
Last week, HRC president Chad Griffin sent letters to organizations with events scheduled at the hotel, asking them to move to other venues.
“The sultan is offering free strawberries to LGBT couples in L.A. and death by stoning to those in Brunei,” Griffin said in a statement. “This is the height of hypocrisy, and we must ensure that profits from LGBT weddings in the U.S. stop going to regime that could soon start executing its LGBT citizens.”
A spokeswoman for the hotel did not immediately return a message for comment. But on Monday, the CEO of the Dorchester Collection, the hotel chain that operates both Los Angeles venues, said that the boycott was misdirected and would hurt employees and the local economy.
Meanwhile, the Intl. Women’s Media Foundation has cancelled its plans to hold the Courage in Journalism Awards at the hotel on Oct. 29. Elisa Lees Munoz, executive director of the organization, said that they “could no longer hold an event at a venue whose owner stands for the violation of the very human rights we fight for.”