COVID-19 Measures in Hotels – Part 1

By Adele Sharman

27 July 2021
This post isn’t about if I believe we should all be wearing masks or my views on social distancing measures. It is about the measures that are in place in the hotels I have stayed in during my adventure, a total of 15.

Let me just say that I have the utmost respect for all the staff at these hotels from the front desk, bar, restaurant staff, cleaners but most of all the pool and beach staff, who wear masks all day in the sun. They do tremendous work while serving me drinks and making my stay a very enjoyable experience.

Maxx Royal in Belek (Turkey)

I would rank the Maxx Royal in Belek Turkey as the top 1 since the level of service and care for visitor’s health was impeccable back then. I went to this hotel in October 2020.

No one was taking your temperature there. It was all measured with a temperature scanner in the lobby and other cameras around the hotel. I felt it was the right choice to use thermal cameras since it didn’t feel intrusive like having your temperature taken every time you entered the building.

All equipment in the room was disinfected and sealed with a “sanitised label”. You also had a hygiene kit added to the amenities kit in your room. If you chose to wear a mask, which I didn’t, unless I was asked to, ready-to-use packaged masks were located at entry points in the restaurants.

Most of the restaurants had their menu on a QR Code. If you struggled with scanning the code, an iPad was always offered to you. The buffet was served by a professional to minimize potential contact and contamination risk. Tables were not set, so knives, forks, and spoons were in a sealed envelope and given to you when you were seated. Poolside towels were wrapped in plastic with a sealed label.

One of the funniest measures this hotel had was the use of plastic sticks for the lift to press your floor button. You had one box for new sticks and another one for used sticks. Great concept, if you ask me. I had one run-in with another guest because I didn’t use a stick to press the button when I entered the lift. The lady had pressed the button outside to call the lift with her finger. All I can say is that some people have very different views on things. Overall, I never felt restricted at the Maxx and was very safe the whole time I stayed there.

The Golden Bear Lodge
 and Aqua Marina (Dominican Republic)

I have stayed in three hotels and two apartments in the Dominican Republic. The Golden Bear Lodge and Aqua Marina were all sanitised before our stay and we didn’t have to wear a mask, as it was just us two. If I used the beauty salon at Aqua Marina I would have to wear a mask to have my nails done and the temperature taken.

Secrets Cap Cana Resort & Spa
(Dominican Republic)

In the hotel Secrets Cap Cana, staff wore masks, and you had sealed masks in the room with a hand sanitiser for your use. Guests did not have to wear them. The temperature was taken only when guests entered the hotel. The TV remote control in-room tablet and amenities kit, extra pillows or blankets were pre-sanitised and presented in vacuum-sealed packaging.

Sun loungers were placed with a social distance between them but the hotel was not fully occupied, so that wasn’t an issue. I didn’t use the SPA or gym I was there to bring the New Year in, keeping fit was not on my agenda. The food was ordered on iPad or with the help of a QR code but you could ask for a physical menu. Again, I felt safe and was not asked to wear a mask.

Eden Roc Cap Cana (Dominican Republic)

At the Eden Roc in Cap Cana, the staff wore masks all the time. We were offered hand sanitiser gel as well the minute we entered the hall. The layout in the lobby, restaurants, beach, and pool area applied social distancing measures but again the hotel wasn’t full so it didn’t make a big difference.

All the information about restaurants was available digitally via a QR code or on an iPad. We were asked to wear a mask when we used the buffet area for breakfast. There was a funny situation when I simply couldn’t get to the buffet area because I was hungover. The wonderful staff offered to get my drink and pastries for me so I didn’t have to leave my seat. We didn’t need to get a PCR test done before leaving because we were still staying in the area. I felt very safe and not under pressure to wear a mask.

Casas del XVI (Dominican Republic)

The Casas del XVI in Santo Domingo welcomed us warmly. It’s a unique collection of houses so there isn’t a check-in desk at the house we’ve stayed in. We were greeted on the street and informed where to go.

Our temperature was taken and we were not asked to wear masks. You could download the app on your phone so all requests would be made through WhatsApp. We pre-ordered our breakfast which was set up for us outside our room which was a lovely experience. We had an amenity kit in our room, which included a hand sanitiser. The warm welcome made us feel special and safe during the whole stay.

All and all, I enjoyed staying in these accommodations and was pleased with how well the preventative measures were taken against coronavirus to make sure everyone could have a safe and enjoyable experience. I’ll be posting the second part of this blog about the hotels I’ve stayed in the US and my opinions on the successful implementation of COVID-19 control measures to protect their guests. Stay tuned!

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