People with Arabic/Muslim – sounding names are not welcome at this Paris restaurant – L’Avenue. The restaurant’s director has often said he “prefers to have two beautiful blondes on the terrace, with two coffees, rather than Muslim veiled women” who are bad for business. France already has an official country-wide ban on full-face veils in public.
CarbonatedTV An elite French restaurant popular among American celebrities and supermodels, is being accused of discriminating against people with Arabic sounding names and women in headscarves, according to Buzzfeed News.
The employees at L’Avenue reportedly have a system in place to deal with such patrons: they don’t take their reservations at all.
According to the four former staffers who have come forward with the appalling allegations, they were also instructed not to entertain tourists from Middle Eastern countries – specifically Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia – either. If a woman wearing veil or hijab showed up, they were told the restaurant was full, even if there were tables available.
However, American supermodels of half Arab Muslim descent, like Gigi and Bella Hadid, have no problem getting in. Probably because no one would ever mistake them for Arab Muslims:
Moreover, if someone on the restaurant’s no-serve list managed to reserve a table through online or phone booking, the employees were supposed to tell them their reservation was never recorded, explained the eatery’s former manager. If a customer insisted, the staff would allegedly take them upstairs and seat them on an obscure table so they aren’t visible to most patrons or people outside.
“The restaurant’s director, Alexandre Denis, often says he prefers to have two blonde people, beautiful, on the terrace, with two coffees, rather than veiled women, even if they are rich,” a former staffer, identified only as Anais, told BuzzFeed News. “Those, we had to refuse, and every time a hostess took a reservation of a customer with an Arabic name, he asked who had made this reservation and reminded the staffers of their instructions: to refuse them as much as possible by pretending that the restaurant is full.”