Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Hotel occupancy ‘low’ compared to previous years

File photo

DESPITE the recent spike in the number of coronavirus cases in Cebu, hotel occupancy for the weekend is 40 percent.

This may be a considerable drop from the 60 to 70 percent occupancy last year or the 80 to 90 occupancy in 2019, but it shows that locals still celebrate Valentine’s Day, said Hotel, Resort and Restaurant Association of Cebu Inc. (HRRACI) president Alfred Reyes.

“However, 2019’s turnout was still the best because all restaurants were full and almost all rooms were fully occupied,” he said.

He said they expect more couples to do walk-ins on Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021, and on Sunday, Feb. 14.

Reyes said celebrating love in the middle of a pandemic not only means bouquets of flowers and chocolates, but also health declaration forms and strict sanitation protocols.

In Bai Hotel, where Reyes is vice president for operations and general manager, management is strictly implementing the “only two adults and two kids per room” policy.

He said they don’t require swab test results from guests who flew in to Cebu since these were already checked in the airport.

“As long as you don’t have any symptoms like fever and the like, we normally allow that,” he said.

Bai Hotel also implements the “no mask, no face shield, no entry” policy.

Guests must wear masks and face shields at all times while outside of their rooms.

Physical distancing of at least one meter is strictly enforced in all common areas including, but not limited to, the elevators, lobbies and food outlets.

As mandated by the government, all guests and associates are required to submit a Health Declaration Form before entering premises.

They are also scanned for their body temperature upon entry. Guests are required to pass through the disinfecting foot bath located in all entrances.

There is also luggage disinfection, while hand sanitizers are readily available in strategic places around the hotel and food outlets.

Management reserves the right to refuse entry to anyone exhibiting any or all of the symptoms (fever, cough, colds, sore throat, body malaise, diarrhea).

Meanwhile, the Cebu City Emergency Operations Center (EOC) reminded hotels and other similar establishments to strictly implement health protocols on Valentine’s Day.

City Councilor Joel Garganera, EOC deputy chief implementer, said hotels should ensure that their respective health infection and prevention control officers are in place.

He said the best way to celebrate Valentine’s Day is to keep others safe.

“We don’t want anyone to acquire the virus while being on vacation,” said Garganera. “Love is in the air; so is Covid-19.”

Since they expect many to spend the day in local hotels for a “staycation,” he said said health protocols should be followed to prevent further transmission of the virus.

Last January, Mayor Edgardo Labella issued an executive order prohibiting hotels from allowing parties inside rooms.

Labella said the City would revoke the business permit of erring establishments. (JOB, JJL)


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