'Unsightly' bulges begone - New Zealand hotel bans cyclists in Lycra

Muddy boots and jogging bottoms are fine, though, says South Island’s Plough Hotel

Not everyone is blessed with the physique of a pro cyclist, but that doesn't stop us from wearing Lycra. It’s comfy, it wicks sweat well and it doesn't flap about when you’re in the saddle. But a hotelier on New Zealand's South Island has decided that the sight of a cyclist in Lycra shorts is more than his customers should be forced to endure.

The Plough Hotel in the town of Rangiora has decided that Lycra cycling shorts show off “unsightly bumps and bulges” and so it's banned anyone wearing them in an effort to “raise standards”, reports the Guardian. A sign placed outside the café reads: “The bicycle is a beautiful object but they should never have invented lycra! No lycra shorts allowed please.”

The hotel’s co-owner Mike Saunders is quoted as saying: “I am not against Lycra in general, just Lycra shorts. A lot of our customers are elderly or children and they don’t need to know that much detail about the shape of somebody.”

Muddy boots welcome

The sign outside the plough hotel, rangiora:
The sign outside the plough hotel, rangiora:

The sign outside Rangiora's Plough Hotel (Mike Saunders)

Controversially, though, muddy football boots and tracksuit pants are still welcome at the Plough. You can also settle down to a delicious breakfast wearing flip flops, should you wish.

“So far locals have respected the fact we are trying to enforce a dress code so they can eat their meals surrounded by people wearing trousers,” added Saunders.

Disconnect

The move was criticised by local outfit Pegasus Cycling Club, with their chairwoman telling Fairfax New Zealand: “There’s people in New Zealand now who have grown up disconnected from bicycles, have no understanding of what it is to get out there and ride and see the scenery, they are interested in getting in their car and driving place to place. 

"I think it’s just some ignorance or lack of understanding.”

What do you think, should Lycra be banned from the breakfast table? Let us know in the comments below.

Jamie Beach

Deputy Editor, UK
Jamie's been addicted to bikes from the moment his stabilisers came off. Earliest cycling memory is the chipboard-ramp-on-bricks, but happiest one is bombing down a Mallorcan mountain pass that seemed it might never end. Always on the hunt for the perfect rain jacket, a keen collector of hats.
  • Discipline: Road, gravel
  • Preferred Terrain: Big mountains with long climbs, equally long and fast descents, the chance to get above the treeline.
  • Current Bikes: Genesis Croix de Fer, Brompton M3L
  • Dream Bike: BMC TeamMachine SLR01, Moots Routt
  • Beer of Choice: Augustiner
  • Location: Bath, Somerset, UK

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