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Hotels and Accommodations: Safely Adapting in a COVID-19 World

With ongoing concerns related to COVID-19, it's undeniable travelers will be interested—now more than ever—in how hotels and accommodations are adapting their policies to keep their guests and their staff safe.

In June 2020, Hilton introduced a new standard of hotel cleanliness and disinfection to ensure guests around the world enjoy an even cleaner and safer stay: Hilton CleanStay with Lysol protection—developed with experts from RB, maker of Lysol and Dettol.

As part of the program, Hilton has implemented room seals to indicate which rooms have not been accessed since they were cleaned, as well as extra disinfection of high-touch areas in guest rooms, increased cleaning frequency of public areas and enhanced cleaning in fitness centers. Also available are guest-accessible disinfecting wipes at entrances and high-traffic areas; enhanced cleaning and changes to buffets, in-room dining, and meeting spaces; and contactless check-in and check-out at many properties.

Hilton notes it has also worked in consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization to ensure hotel teams are always up to date with current protocols and are prepared to act swiftly if alerted to a confirmed COVID-19 case on site.

Also following guidance from CDC and WHO, Marriott has created the Marriott Global Cleanliness Council—consisting of in-house and outside experts in food and water safety, hygiene and infection prevention, and hotel operations. Their work focuses on developing a new generation of global hospitality cleanliness standards, norms and behaviors.

Marriott has implemented new cleaning technologies, including electrostatic sprayers that allow for touchless disinfecting capabilities, to disinfect typically hard to reach areas—along with the highest classification of recommended disinfectants for everyday cleaning.

Groups staying with the hotel will notice disinfecting wipes available for use in their rooms, rearranged furniture in lobbies to allow for proper social distancing, partitions at the front desks for an extra level of precaution, and hand sanitizing stations near places like elevators and entrances.

Tasks that usually involve contact of some kind could now be done directly from Marriott's mobile app, such as checking in and accessing your room—and even ordering room service, which is then specially packaged and delivered right outside the room without contact.

Overall, when groups are ready to hit the road again, they could easily expect to see more touchless technology and enhanced deep-cleaning and everyday cleaning protocols.

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Article information accurate at time of publication.

Written by Sarah Suydam, Staff Writer for Groups Today.

This article originally appeared in the Jul/Aug 2020 issue of Groups Today.


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