Hotel offers fish for hire

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A hotel in Belgium has come up with a unique added extra to hotel room accommodation: rent a fish for an evening.

The manager of the Van der Valk Hotel Charleroi, about 70 kilometres south of Brussels, said the idea to lend out the establishment’s three goldfish came to him a few years back when he noticed guests getting bored at the reception desk.

“I wanted to make things more interesting, to make people laugh,” David Dillen.

He decided to offer guests the chance to keep one of the establishment’s goldfish — currently a trio named Nemo, Heineken and Prince Charles — in their room.

Since then, several guests have taken him up on the offer to rent a fish for 3.5 euros ($5.80) a night (fishbowl included).

But the scheme doesn’t always go swimmingly.

“A three-year-old Dutch girl kidnapped one of our fish,” Dillen said. “Her father, who found it in the car on the Belgian-Dutch border, immediately called us. The hotel offered it to them”.

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