Could a backlash against Donald Trump hurt his new Toronto hotel?

Marc Weisblott
National Affairs Reporter
Daily Brew

Playing politics may turn out to be not that great for Donald Trump's business.

The real estate baron's pursuit of the Republican presidential nomination has led to a call for a boycott over his opposition to same sex-marriage, and accusations of racism, despite the overriding assumption the run is mostly an ill-conceived publicity stunt.

And, it has all come just in time for the grand opening of Trump's entry into Canada.

Construction of the Trump International Hotel & Tower at the corner of Bay and Adelaide streets in downtown Toronto, has reached the stage where its first overnight guests have booked for June.

The residential component of the 59-storey skyscraper, which will incorporate the highest condominiums in the country, is slated for completion later this year. Alex Shnaider, the billionaire owner of one of the penthouse suites, received his occupancy permit last month.

With hopes of renting out 261 luxury hotel rooms each night, however, a backlash doesn't seem like something the Trump Toronto can afford.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation has launched the "Tune Out Trump" campaign geared to draw attention to the candidate's stance against marriage equality, which prompted Rosie O'Donnell to cancel her stay at his hotel in Chicago.

Celebrity critics have also condemned Trump as racist for furthering the view Barack Obama wasn't born in the U.S. The president's release of his birth certificate on Wednesday was regarded as a signal the "birther movement" baiting crossed a line.

The tactics could further tarnish the mogul's reputation in Canada, where the blowhard Republican act can only be regarded as a freak show, even if columnist Peter Worthington of the Toronto Sun has stepped up to assert Trump can't be taken seriously.

Nonetheless, the candidate has maintained he expects to be.

When it comes to promoting the Toronto venture, The Donald can deflect criticism by leaving the publicity to daughter Ivanka, who visited the construction site last summer.

But a ribbon-cutting appearance may be delayed due to the birth of her first child right around the time Trump Toronto checks in its first guest.

(AFP Photo)