Most properties are pledging best practices according to CDC and EPA guidelines such as frequent cleaning, air-filtration systems, contactless check-in and decreased capacity. Others are taking the opportunity to innovate, brainstorming new ways to make guests feel secure and relaxed, which range from luxe to odd.
In this brave new world, the concierge is more concerned with booking virus tests than fine dining reservations. In place of complimentary sleep masks are mandatory face masks. Floral pillow sprays have been replaced with artisanal sanitizer sprays.
Meet a slew of reinvented (once unimaginable) hotel amenities for the new (sort of) normal:
The doctor is in
At Casa de Campo Resort & Villas in the Dominican Republic, visitors are assured a spot at an onsite hospital.
Casa de Campo
Recognizing a need for guests to feel secure, even in the worst case scenario, many hotels around the world are making medical care their latest amenity.
Guests staying over five days at Atlantis, The Palm in Dubai can book free PCR testing in the comfort of their own suite
Touch and go
Of course, in an ideal world, the object is to avoid getting sick. One way properties are helping to keep their guests healthy is by limiting contact — not just with staff and other guests but with shared objects.
At Garden of the Gods Resort and Club in Colorado Springs, real-life caddies and golf carts have been replaced.
Rockaway Beach is usually a day trip for New York city folks, but CNN Travel’s Stacey Lastoe shows why it deserves to be elevated to a longer getaway.
Keeping it clean
Still, short of living in an actual bubble, it is necessary to touch certain shared surfaces, so hotels are also upping the ante when it comes to cleaning and sanitizing — a relief to anyone who has ever watched a black-light exposé on hotel bedspreads.
On top of requisite scrubbing with hardcore disinfectants, many properties have installed sleek, branded sanitizer dispensers at entrances to public spaces.
But some are also finding high-tech solutions to keeping things sterile.
The Beverly Hilton in LA (best known for hosting The Golden Globes) has brought in hospital-approved UV Xenex LightStrike Robots to “zap” germs around the hotel.
The Beverly Hilton
As visitors walk through, it sprays a nonstaining mist from head to toe — like a hipster human car wash. The hotel also offers sanitizer stations, QR codes for menus around the property and a little package of masks and sanitizers in-room.
Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur has instituted next-generation sanitization protocols.
The cleaning process is sustainable and nontoxic, eschewing more common ammonia or bleach-based chemicals.
A proprietary substance is applied to indoor surfaces exposed to light, which renders that surface and the surrounding air self-disinfecting and antimicrobial through photocatalysis for up to 12 months. The second step is a daily EPA-approved disinfectant that’s electrically charged.
At Nobu Ryokan Malibu, guests receive a welcome gift including branded masks, gloves and hand santizer.
I think we’re alone now
Certainly, another tactic for mitigating contagion is avoiding crowds.
The Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village in Florida will stock guests’ refrigerators and pantries with ready-made meals and more.
Westin Cape Coral
Outside the box
The Inns of Aurora in the Finger Lakes of upstate New York offers guests private archery lessons.
Inns of Aurora
Many properties are encouraging guests to get outdoors, where the risk of transmission is lower.
Resorts are taking restaurant experiences outside, as well.
Home suite home
Commodore Perry Estate in Austin, Texas, opened in June 2020 as part of the Auberge Resorts Collection.