I’ll take the designer quarantine package, please!
Some lucky New Yorkers who stayed in taxpayer-funded quarantine hotels around the city received Coach designer items as a parting gift to safely end their quarantine.
Sam Szabo, 32, of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, was staying at Queens’ LaGuardia Plaza Hotel in November when he received what appeared to be a $350 Katy Satchel Coach bag on his way out after completing his eight-day quarantine.
“It was very strange,” Szabo told the New York Post of receiving the luxury item – which is no longer available on the company’s website but can be had for a reduced price of $140 on Coach Outlet.
“At the end of it all, I was given a free Coach handbag as a thank you for staying at this quarantine hotel. So strange experience, but overall hard to complain about.
Along with getting a free designer bag, Szabo received his own “private room, three meals a day, and very good care from the nurses.”
“I have to say the whole system is incredibly impressive,” he told the New York Post.
The hotel also offered a range of heels, loafers and other bag options for residents to choose from – all donated by the Coach Foundation as part of a $2 million community support initiative. Most of the designer products were distributed in quarantine hotels.
A spokesperson for NYC Health + Hospitals told the New York Post that the free bags were part of a recent initiative in March 2021 when the Coach Foundation offered to make a one-time donation of their products to help New Yorkers receiving coronavirus care in the city. public health system.
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Sam Szabo, 32, of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, received a Katy Satchel Coach bag (pictured) on his way out of his stay at Queens’ LaGuardia Plaza Hotel in November
The Katy Satchel originally retailed for $350 from the brand, but is only available on its outlet website now, at the discounted price of $140.
The 32-year-old performance artist opted to stay in the quarantine hotel – which is offered to all eligible New Yorkers – after catching the virus to isolate himself from his roommate and was turned away by staff in waiting for his return by free taxi and was informed that he would receive the luxury item.
“They said, ‘The taxi driver has to leave, but we have a parting gift for you if you want to pick him up,'” he told the New York Post.
“At this point, I was so tired of being here, but [I thought] “Okay, fine, whatever parting gift, cool.” So I drop my bags in the cab, and they lead me to this table that’s just full of Coach handbags.
“Leaving something so liminal – a hotel but with hospital amenities, very spartan, efficient and clean, absolutely no luxury – and then walking out with a handbag was a surprise.”
The Coach Foundation has partnered with NYC Health + Hospitals, which is in charge of quarantine hotels, like Queens’ LaGuardia Plaza Hotel, to offer a one-time donation of luxury goods to give to those receiving coronavirus aid funded by the city
He stayed at the hotel (pictured) for eight days close to Thanksgiving to protect his housemate from the virus He received the bag as a parting gift from the hotel
‘Now I have this Coach handbag. It’s a really good icebreaker story,’ he told the New York Post.
Szabo wasn’t the only guest to receive a bag.
A 34-year-old man, who spoke to the New York Post on condition of anonymity, said he too received a designer item.
“As you leave they sort your laundry and then they tell you you have a present from Coach which is the funniest thing ever – why would you get a present for all that?” the man said.
“You take the elevator to the lobby, and just as you come out there’s a stack of Coach bags behind a retractable rope and you go up and take what you want and someone behind the rope hands it to you .
“It’s already a gift that the city takes so much care of you during this crisis, and on top of that, you are rewarded for it,” he told the newspaper.
The man, who was from California, picked out a wallet clutch and gave it to his brother’s girlfriend. When he contracted COVID-19 again a few months later and stayed at another hotel, he did not receive a parting gift.
Who is eligible for the NYC Free Quarantine Hotel Option?
New York residents who test positive for the coronavirus can choose to opt for a free stay at one of the city’s partner hotels.
Residents must meet certain requirements to qualify, such as living with roommates or family members.
The city says residents are eligible if:
- Your house has no space for you to stay six feet away from others
- You share bedrooms or a bathroom
- You live with a vulnerable person
Rooms are also available for those who are not infected, but live with someone who is.
To get started, call 311 or 844-NYC-4NYC (1-844-692-4692) and a service provider will go through the following steps after assessing a patient’s symptoms.
Source: New York City Government
DailyMail.com has contacted Coach and Szabo for comment.
At the same hotel, some residents not only received a free designer bag, but they can bring cigarettes and weed.
Residents are permitted to bring cigarettes and marijuana with them, which must be given to the staff nurse upon arrival.
Patients will be allowed to smoke during their three daily breaks outside. However, alcohol is not allowed inside the residence.
Jonathan Martin, 21, of Astoria, Queens, who stayed at the LaGuardia Plaza Hotel in January, said staff took his weed and placed it in a plastic bag when he arrived. He gave it back to his breaks.
Martin, a cafe manager, stayed at the hotel for five days until he completed his quarantine. He said he was grateful to be able to bring marijuana with him to help him “unwind.”
“It’s nice to relax when I’m stuck in a room…alone for five days,” he told the New York Post from outside the hotel, where he was watched by staff during his stay. 15 minute break.
He also said staff carefully inspected his sealed bottle of pomegranate juice when he arrived to make sure there was no hidden alcohol inside.
At one point, the city considered allowing staff to serve, finding customers were refusing the quarantine option when alcohol was banned, which put those they lived with at risk of the virus.