Marriott International has launched a new internal platform to promote hotel cleanliness. Its newly-formed Global Cleanliness Council will, it says, “promote even higher standards of cleanliness in the age of Covid-19”
In a statement, Marriott said that the “multi-pronged platform [will] elevate its cleanliness standards and hospitality norms and behaviours to meet the new health and safety challenges presented by the current pandemic environment”.
The hotel company is not alone in promoting new standards of cleanliness in an attempt to both reassure travellers and also to tempt them back in coming weeks and months.
Approximately 25 percent of Marriott International’s 7,300 global hotels, including about 1,000 in the U.S are currently closed, according to Bloomberg. You can watch an interview with Arne Sorensen here: Most Marriott Hotels will survive crisis, says CEO.
For Marriott, technology is one answer to improving cleanliness in its hotels, including electrostatic sprayers with hospital-grade disinfectant to sanitise surfaces throughout the hotel. The sprayers allow house keeping staff to rapidly clean and disinfect areas and can be used in a hotel setting to clean and disinfect guest rooms, lobbies, gyms and other public areas.
Marriott says that “Electrostatic spraying technology uses the highest classification of disinfectants recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) to treat known pathogens”. In addition, the company is testing ultraviolet light technology for sanitising keys for guests and devices shared by associates.
In addition, all areas that are considered ‘high-touch’ will be “thoroughly treated with hospital-grade disinfectants” and disinfecting wipes will also be provided in each room for guests’ personal use.
Signage in hotel lobbies will remind guests to maintain social distancing protocols and furniture will be removed or rearranged to allow more space. Marriott is also evaluating adding partitions at front desks and is working with its supply chain partners to make masks and gloves available to associates.
The company is installing more hand sanitising stations at the entrances to its hotels, near the front desk, elevator banks and fitness and meeting spaces. In addition, in over 3,200 of Marriott’s hotels, guests can use their phones to check in, access their rooms, make special requests and order room service that will be specially packaged and delivered to the room without contact.
Marriott’s food safety programme now includes enhanced sanitation guidelines and training videos for all operational associates that includes hygiene and disinfecting practices. In addition, the company is modifying its operational practices for in-room dining and designing new approaches to buffets.
“We are living in a new age, with COVID-19 front and centre for our guests and our associates,” said Arne Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Marriott International. “We want our guests to understand what we are doing today and planning for in the near future in the areas of cleanliness, hygiene and social distancing so that when they walk through the doors of one of our hotels, they know our commitment to their health and safety is our priority. It’s equally important to us that our associates know the changes we are making to help safeguard their health as they serve our guests.”
The new Global Cleanliness Council is chaired by Ray Bennett, Chief Global Officer, Global Operations, Marriott International, and “will benefit from knowledge and input from both in-house and outside experts.”