Spalding family who are living in a London hotel after being forced to visit Brazil after a family bereavement say it is 'hotel prison'
A family who has been living in a quarantine hotel for a week have compared the living conditions to that of a prison.
Spalding tattooist Lutero Mariano has been holed up in a Best Western hotel in Heathrow since February 25 after flying to Brazil with his partner and three year old daughter.
The family were forced to make the trip in January after a family member passed away, meaning that on their return they would be required by law to quarantine in the hotel for 10 days.
Mr Mariano, who runs Ink Warrior on New Road, has shelled out £2,400 in order for the family to say in the hotel which he has described as a “hotel prison”.
He said: It’s awful. It really does feel like it’s a hotel prison.
“I understand that we have to quarantine but it’s not nice.
“We are allowed to leave the room for fresh air if we call reception, then we are escorted downstairs by a security guard - there are security guards outside and it’s all fenced off. A few days ago someone arrived and after seeing what it was like he jumped over the fence and ran off!
“We also have three meals a day left outside the room but the food is awful.
“We can have food delivered to the hotel but I think that’s a rip off when I’m paying so much money!”
The family has taken several Covid tests along the journey in order to ensure that they are safe to travel, and they will take another test before they are able to leave the hotel.
However, Mr Mariano explained that despite being very careful they could have easily caught the virus at any step along the way.
He said: “We flew from Sao Paulo to Frankfurt and the plane was full of people, although we were wearing masks. We then flew to Heathrow and again the plane was full, then when we arrived we weren’t segregated until we got to immigration so you could catch anything from anyone.
“The whole time we were mixing with people from other flights.
“We actually felt safer in Brazil than we do in the UK as they are so strict about wearing a mask, keeping socially distanced and hand sanitising.”
Providing the family test negative on their next test (on day eight of their stay), they will be able to return home on day 10 but not before returning to the airport.
Mr Mariano said: “We have to go back on a bus to the airport where we can then be picked up to go home.
“I don’t understand why they want to take us back to an airport where people might have it.
“Mentally it’s been a big struggle - I can’t imagine what it would be like for someone who is alone.
“We just want to go home.”