HOUSTON Lance Armstrong, he of the seven Tour de France cycling championships, nevertheless has an infamously hostile relationship with virtually all things French. Add France’s hotel industry to the list.
As the keynote speaker at this week’s National Business Travel Association conference in Houston, Armstrong was asked about his experiences as a frequent business traveler. He took the opportunity to once again turn his ire on the French, this time singling out the “horrible” condition of the country’s hotel stock.
“Most of my travel—at least in Europe—was in France, staying in these … You’re competing in the biggest race in the world and you’re stuck staying in these horrible hotels. There are no French hotel owners in here, are there?”
According to a reporter for CultureMap Houston who was in attendance, the reaction of the crowd was less than enthusiastic. Coincidentally, the moderator is employed by a company that runs hotels in France—the report does not identify her or the company—and she unsurprisingly disagreed with Armstrong’s assessment, offering to put him up next time he is in the country.
Armstrong then reportedly continued with his rant by listing the several France hotel chains that he finds unacceptable.