Hotel denies it regrets bejeweled tree
December 21st, 2010
11:49 AM ET

Hotel denies it regrets bejeweled tree

The Abu Dhabi hotel that put up that glitzy Christmas tree adorned with $11 million in jewelry denies saying it regrets the ploy, according to The National.

Some commentators had criticized the Emirates Palace Hotel for the 40-foot tree's opulence, saying the money could have been better spent.

Hotel officials seemed to express regret about overdoing it, but now they say they were misunderstood. The ostentatious tree was merely a public relations stunt, nothing more, they say.

"With anything you do, you might get negative responses and negative publicity. That doesn't mean what we did is wrong," Hazem Harfoush, the hotel's assistant director of marketing, told The National.

The statement that got news outlets talking said:

"The hotel regrets attempts to overload the tradition followed by most hotels in the country with meanings and connotations that do not fall in line with the hotel's professional standards. ...

"Putting the Christmas tree up is not a novelty, rather it is a tradition meant to share in celebrating occasions guests hold while they are away from their home countries and families."

The hotel told The National that the gems on the tree are worth $11 million, but it hadn't bought them. They belong to a jeweler that has an outlet in the hotel, and they will be returned to the store when the tree comes down.

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Filed under: Abu Dhabi • United Arab Emirates • World
soundoff (44 Responses)

    bejeweled is a fun game

    December 21, 2010 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |
  2. reva

    Not if blood diamonds are in

    December 21, 2010 at 10:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jacob

    I am an American living in Abu Dhabi. I was not surprised at all to hear about this. This country loves to go over the top with everything. I don't know why people are acting so negative about this Christmas Tree. This country has Christmas Trees in almost every single building, mall, hotel, gas station you go to. A local jeweler is simply displaying his jewels. I don't see the big problem doing that? I'm sure his sales are going to sky rocket.

    December 22, 2010 at 12:49 am | Report abuse |
  4. Screw face

    What do u people look like and to cnn i need a job

    December 22, 2010 at 12:59 am | Report abuse |
  5. Cesar

    @Screw Face: We are all very attractive people with smooth glowing skin, model figure and model hair, as well as perfect symetrical faces. These are the minimum requirements to blogg here. So how did you get in? As for your second querry, would you like to be a CNN proof reader, grave yard shift???

    December 22, 2010 at 7:31 am | Report abuse |
  6. Screw face

    Ok now that i know that are their any women in here that has a booty like serena williams

    December 22, 2010 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. 2ndblackpresident

    I cant stands nomore

    December 22, 2010 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
  8. 2ndblackpresident

    Ok got u

    December 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Krissy

    At least they can put a tree up like that there.We are so broke in America it would be impossible.NOW WHERE'S THE LAND OF MILK AND HONEY?

    December 24, 2010 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
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