Red or white wine? At the Olympic Hotel, he comes in a hazmat suit – The Journal

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Chinese people working in hazmat suits in the Beijing Olympics’ closed-circuit “bubble” don’t hesitate to be photographed

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese people working in hazmat suits inside the closed-loop “bubble” of the Beijing Olympics aren’t shy about being photographed. In fact, they seem to welcome it, showing pride in carrying out a nationwide COVID-19 control mission.

Associated Press photographer Jae C. Hong spent time around Beijing’s Shangri-La Hotel, one of the city’s top destinations for out-of-town guests. It is also a hotel inside the Olympic bubble, accessible to athletes, Olympic officials and journalists.

Everyone seems approachable. The scenes are incongruous for foreigners enjoying an evening meal of Beijing’s famous roast duck.

The waiters and waitress dress head to toe in puffy white suits – with blue pinstripe trim – hands covered in sticky plastic gloves, shoes enclosed inside the overalls and masks in place behind plastic face shields.

Everyday pleasures like a cup of coffee or a glass of wine become exotic when the waiter arrives, seemingly straight from a disaster movie set.

The industrial-like emphasis on safety and sanitation contrasts sharply with the hotel’s opulence with its massive chandeliers and displays of Chinese art hanging above overstuffed sofas and lounge chairs.

Apparently, the suits only take a few minutes to put on, and none of the wearers seem the least bit uncomfortable in the safety gear. Several staff members said they are not supposed to talk to reporters and that they kept their word.

But they all offered signs of punching when they approached, and one of them flashed five fingers when asked how long it took to put on the suit.

A woman in hazmat suits watching curling on a big TV screen said this when asked if she understood the rules: “No.”

When asked why she was watching, she laughed and replied, “China is playing.”

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More AP Winter Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/winter-olympics and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

A waitress serves a table in protective gear at a restaurant inside the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A hotel worker in protective gear disinfects door handles at the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A hotel employee in protective gear watches a live broadcast of a men’s curling match between China and Switzerland in the lobby of the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics on Wednesday, 16 February 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A hotel worker in protective gear helps a customer pay for their purchase at the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Three hotel workers in protective gear stand next to a checkout booth at the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A hotel worker in protective gear prepares coffee at the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A guest puts on his face mask as a waiter dressed in protective gear hands him a receipt at a restaurant inside the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, February 16, 2022 , in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A waiter wearing protective gear takes an order from a member of the Canadian Olympic team at a restaurant inside the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A worker wearing protective gear cleans the lobby of the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A waiter dressed in protective gear sets a table at a restaurant inside the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Dressed in protective gear, a restaurant receptionist speaks on the phone at the Shangri-La Hotel at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A medical worker enters a COVID testing booth after disinfecting the window of the Shangri-La hotel parking lot at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

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