pool and sea at Marbella Corfu Greece

Hotels in the time of Covid-19

Hotels are slowly opening their doors…

Even when we can fly again, many people will not be comfortable with leaving their homes, or the UK and for others thought of face-masks and distancing while on vacation is a no-go. Throw in the prospect of quarantine on return, and any wanderlust may be fully suppressed for now. And we totally understand.  However, we are also talking to clients who are still desperate to escape, if possible, this year and are comfortable, given extreme precautions are being taken to keep travellers safe. Many of our European hotels are hoping to open their doors cautiously between early June and the middle of July and will be slowly welcoming their domestic market first, but these dates of course may slide.

 

Cautious openings with stringent protocols

This is what we’re hearing from our hotel partners, who are keen to open their doors and will welcome us when we can travel again and feel it is safe to do so. Covid-free certifications will be offered as a hallmark by hotel associations and tourist boards where hotels meet exacting government criteria. Throrough training documents are being drafted and independent audits will be taking place. Here are some of the typical measures that will be required this season and will be put in place according to some of the hotels we’ve been in touch with in Portugal, Spain, Greece, Turkey and Italy:-

  • Imposed reduced numbers of guests for larger properties down to 60-70% occupancy
  • Temperature checks on guests at check in (as well as staff on arrival for work)
  • Daily/twice daily sanitizing of common areas, common equipment (eg bikes for hire, sunbeds, gym equipment) and guest rooms.
  • Hand sanitisers throughout the properties
  • Distancing measures of sunbeds around pools and on beach
  • Constant checking of pool chlorine levels, as usual
  • Restaurants rearranged to ensure much wider distancing between tables with maximum outdoor dining
  • Buffets closed in favour of a la carte dining
  • Smaller numbers of children allowed within the kids’ clubs
  • Limited numbers within spas and gyms and any classes at any one time
  • Masks provided to guests for public areas and worn by hotel staff when serving

 

…but it’s a tough season ahead

It’s going to be an impossibly hard season for hotels with lower occupancy and higher operational requirements, but any visitors who venture out will get a warm welcome, pristine premises and ample space. The majority of the properties we love already have the advantage of lots of space and greenery with plenty of beach, pool and dining space and there are plenty of beautiful boutique options in secluded, remote areas. Of course a private villa gives you ultimate distancing. We’ll get to see first how this all works for the domestic markets first. For any ideas you’re considering for later travel we can provide full details of the measures being taken at each location so you’re comfortable with their procedures.

It’s safe to say that properties will be the cleanest they’ve ever been this year, but when we can get there to experience them is the huge question.

 

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