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Guest banned from hotel for 17 years after pepperoni-filled suitcase led to seagull infestation

The ban has been lifted after 17 years

Chelsea Ritschel
Tuesday 03 April 2018 13:14 BST
Seagull steals tourist's GoPro

A former guest of the Fairmont Empress hotel in Victoria, Canada, is once again allowed to stay at the hotel - 17 years after he was banned for letting seagulls destroy the room.

According to Nick Burchill, from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, the trouble all started when he was staying at the Empress for a business meeting - with a suitcase full of pepperoni, which he planned on sending to his Navy friends.

Rather than leave the pepperoni in his room to spoil, Burchill wrote on Facebook that he decided to leave the pepperoni-filled suitcase next to an open window so the chilly air could keep the pepperoni fresh.

Then, Burchill went for a walk - at which point dozens of seagulls entered into his room and descended on the pepperoni.

Of the moment he returned to his room, Burchill wrote: “I remember walking down the long hall and opening the door to my room to find an entire flock of seagulls in my room. I didn’t have time to count, but there must have been 40 of them and they had been in my room, eating pepperoni for a long time.”

As one would imagine, the room was a mess. According to Burchill, the curtains, lamps, and coffee tables were trashed.

Unable to rid his room of two remaining seagulls, and at this point becoming “agitated,” Burchill decided to throw his shoe at one, which flies out the window alongside his shoe, and cover another in a towel - which also goes out the window.

“One was just bouncing around on the windowsill and I was kind of losing my temper at this point, so I took off one of my shoes and I threw it in the direction of the seagull, and both the seagull and the shoe went out the window,” Burchill told the CBC.

If that weren’t bad enough, an entire group of tourist had seen the procession of items fall from his room window - which Burchill then had to go retrieve.

However, worried that he would be late for his business meeting, Burchill attempted to clean off his shoe and ignore the mess the seagulls had left behind - until the power went out and Burchill realised he had to call the front desk.

According to Burchill, it was the look on the housekeeper’s face that has stuck with him.

He wrote: "I can still remember the look on the lady’s face when she opened the door.

“I had absolutely no Idea what to tell her, so I just said “I’m sorry” and I went to dinner.”

When Burchill returned later that night, his belongings were moved to a different room. And after he’d checked out, his employer was notified that he was no longer welcome at the Empress.

Nick Burchill wanted to clear the air with the hotel over the incident (Stock)

But now, after a long 17 years, Burchill returned to the hotel to apologise for the incident and sent a letter to see if he could convince them to lift the ban.

According to Buchill’s Facebook post, Ryan Rearden, director rooms division of the Empress, reviewed his plea and lifted the ban - a decision that Burchill believes was due to the pound of pepperoni he presented the hotel as a “peace offering.”

Of the incident and their decision to lift the ban, the Fairmont Empress told The Independent: "Fairmont Empress was as amused as everyone else to read the letter from MrBurchill. His series of unfortunate events happened so many years ago, and we were happy to review Mr. Burchill’s letter and have since lifted the ban. We look forward to welcoming MrBurchill to Fairmont Empress again in the future, and since our $60m restoration in 2017, he will be delighted to know that the rooms have modern amenities and air conditioning to keep his pepperoni cool."

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