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Nikko Hotel Manila Garden and Ruby Lim, petitioners, vs. Roberto Reyes, a.k.

a Amay
Bisaya, respondent
G.R No. 154259
February 28, 2005

Roberto Reyes, more popularly known as “Amay Bisaya”, alleged that while he was having
a coffee at the lobby of Hotel Nikko, he was spotted by Dr. Violeta Filart, his friend of several
years and invited hi, to join her in a party at the hotel’s penthouse celebration of the natal day of
Mr. Masakazu Tsuruoka, the hotel’s manager. Reyes went to the party with Dr. Filart carrying a
basket of fruits which was the latters present to the celebrant. When the buffet dinner was ready,
Reyes lined up at the buffet table but to his great shock, shame and embarrassment, he was stopped
by Ruby Lim, the Executive Secretary of Hotel Nikko.
Reyes alleged that, in a loud voice and within the presence and hearing of the other guests
who were making a queue at the buffet table, told him to leave the party because he was not invited.
Reyes explained that he was invited by Dr. Filart but the latter, who was within hearing distance,
ignored him thus adding to shame and humiliation. The Makati policeman approached him to step
out the hotel, he was escorted by the policeman like a common criminal.
Reyes asked for P1 million actual damages, P1 million moral and/or exemplary damages
and P200, 000 attorney’s fees.

Whether or not Hotel Nikko and Ruby Lim are jointly and severally liable with Dr. Filart
for damages under Article 19 and 21 of the Civil Code.

The Court agreed with the lower court’s decision that Ruby Lim did not abuse her right to
ask Reyes to leave the party as she talked to him politely and discreetly. Considering the closeness
to the defendant to plaintiff when she requested for the latter to leave the party was made that they
nearly kissed each other, the request was meant to be heard by him only and there could have been
no intention on her part to embarrass him. In the absence of prrof of motive on the part od the
defendant to humiliate plaintiff and expose him to ridicule and shame, it is unlikely that she would
shout at him at a very close distance.
Hence, the plaintiff cannot be held liable to pay for damages under Article 19 and 21 of the
Civil Code. Neither can her employer, Hotel Nikko, be held liable as its liability springs from that
of its employee.
The doctrine of volenti non fit injuria refers to self-inflicted injury or to the consent to
injury which precludes the recovery of damages by one who has knowingly and voluntarily
exposed himself to danger, even if he is not negligently in doing so.