Under Communism, Guests Accepted “Terrible” Service “Because the State Was Paying”

(p. A4) The service, even the management admits, is terrible. “We would not even qualify for two stars,” said Yuri Kurtaba, the sanitarium’s director of maintenance. There is no room service and no Wi-Fi outside a tiny area near the lobby, and the swimming pool has been empty since the war.
. . .
(p. A10) Ms. Gaivoronskaya ‘s sanitarium is no longer closed to the public, as it was in the old days, but otherwise everything is left pretty much as it was. It offers a pebbly beach on the Black Sea, a statue of Lenin in the lobby, high-ceilinged rooms with chandeliers, bad plumbing and rotary telephones, as well as glorious sunshine well into late fall.
. . .
Sergey Rogulov, a 39-year-old driver from St. Petersburg, said he liked the shabby Stalin-era interiors — “it is like time travel back to the U.S.S.R.” — . . .
. . .
Ms. Gaivoronskaya , the veteran sanitarium worker, said she missed the old days, when guests tended not to complain much because the state was paying.

For the full story, see:
ANDREW HIGGINS. “GAGRA JOURNAL: Bad Pipes, Stunning Views and a Tourism Renaissance.” The New York Times (Thurs., OCT. 13, 2016): A4 & A10.
(Note: ellipses added.)
(Note: the online version of the story has the date OCT. 12, 2016, and has the title “Bad Pipes, Worse Service: A Soviet Riviera Jewel Is Reborn and Booking Up.”)

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