Rooms well protected: ‘Tiger hotel’ in East China responds to controversy
Published: Jan 20, 2022 12:03 PM
Photo: Website

A screen shot from the online video

A video showing "a tiger is walking around" while separated by anti-explosion glass window in a hotel room went viral on Chinese social media in recent days, triggering heated discussion about animal protection and safety of tourists. 

The video was shot in Nantong, East China's Jiangsu Province. A tiger is seen walking around in a separated region by the glass window, and visitors could watch by standing in a hotel room opposite to it. A staffer at the hotel told the Global Times on Thursday that the room hasn't been opened to the public.

Equipped with decent protective facilities, the room is still under renovation, the Paper reported, quoting a staffer from the hotel who said they are waiting for the government's notice, which will decide whether the room will be opened to the public.

This hotel is a parent-child hotel located in Nantong Forest Safari Park. The rooms available to watch other kinds of animals are open and many of them have been booked as China's Spring Festival approaches, according to the working staff.

The topic has gained over 100 million clicks on China's social media Sina Weibo as of press time, with many netizens expressing their sympathy for the animals and their concern for the safety of tourists if visitors are allowed to stay in rooms from which they can gaze at a tiger.

"Both the tiger and I wouldn't be able to fall asleep, as it probably wants to eat me and I will be thinking about being eaten," one netizen wrote. "What is the difference between this and an animal show?" another wrote. Some said the tiger might be depressed as it is being kept in such a small space.

A working staff from the Chongchuan bureau of culture and tourism in Nantong said it's an experienced program developed by the hotel and the tiger was fed by the zoo based on related government regulations.

There is also a restaurant in Nantong Forest Safari Park that has been running for several years where visitors can watch tigers from the restaurant with separated glass between them, said media reports.

In October 2021, the park's move to introduce experienced programs to allow visitors to "touch" animals after checking in at the hotel caused disputes on Chinese social media.