A hotel manager telling a group of Black hotel guests they are not allowed to eat inside—even though there are White patrons dining in the same space—sparked accusations of being racial bias.
Maria Baietti filmed and posted the tense interaction with the manager of the Montage Resort in Laguna Beach, California on Facebook.
In the viral video, the manager—identified as "Timothy"—approached the seated group and told them they had to eat outside.
However, the camera panned over to the other guests—who appeared to be White and were seated at tables and eating inside—closer to the patio window.
The group civilly expressed the hotel rules did not make sense and said Timothy was "coming into the conversation hostile."
"I react to the way our guests react."
Here is the video:
Noticing he was being filmed, the manager approached Baietti and told her to "go ahead and film all you want. Here's my name tag."
Twitter user Rob Gill identified the man's full name and sought more information from users.
Growing visibly upset, Timothy asked the other members of the party, "Is this not rude—taking out her phone and video recording me?"
Baietti wrote in the Facebook video caption:
"Timothy the Montage racially biased manager. These individualized made up rules made no sense to us."
"Yesterday afternoon myself and family – 3 others went to the Montage Resort in Laguna Beach for lunch and drinks."
"We ordered drinks as soon as we arrived and requested to be seated inside. The outside area had zero umbrellas for shade."
"The manager on duty, Timothy, told our party we would have to sit outside. We all looked around the room to see several tables with large and small groups seated inside being served drinks and food....and wearing no masks."
Currently, much of Southern California is in the restrictive purple tier—which does not allow for indoor dining. All bars and indoor restaurants are closed in Orange County, where the Montage Resort in Laguna Beach is located.
Baietti noted other hotel guests were walking "into the place wearing no masks" and asked Timothy the "logic in this madness."
She added Timothy was "very rude and aggressive in his tone" when she and her family asked why they had to sit outside since the other guests—a few feet away—were enjoying their food and drinks inside.
She identified the situation as "clear-cut discrimination."
"Our whole group was African American to be very clear. Timothy continued to unprofessionally escalate the situation. We spoke to him calmly and he was talking loudly saying he responds to his guest how they respond to him."
"What manager of any business says that? He asked his assistant manager to go get security for us and demanded that we leave. It was very embarrassing and appalling."
"I would never ever go back to this place and highly discourage anyone else giving this resort one dime of your money! I am filing a formal complaint with management."
Frustrated social media users unloaded on the hotel and Timothy for his unprofessionalism.
Twitter commented on how Timothy was unnerved and too focused on the fact he was being recorded instead of clearly articulating what constitutes eating inside as opposed to outside.
The video ended with Timothy—as if in retaliation—pulling out his smartphone and filming the group that was filming him.
He claimed he was recording them because of their "rude" behavior.
A longer version of the video was posted by Skye Cotton. The person who filmed this version of the interaction was heard telling Timothy, "I don't give a f'k, Timothy," which prompted the manager to have security remove the Black family from the premises.
According to the comments Timothy was fired by the hotel, but that is unconfirmed.