With attractive rates, hotel banks on staycation market | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

A staycation as a way to destress during the pandemic
A staycation as a way to destress during the pandemic

Traveling outside the city for a breath of fresh air has become a way for couples and families to destress during the pandemic. The restrictions and safety protocols, however, can put some people off. Fortunately, there are hotels in and around Manila that have been accredited by the tourism department and can accept guests who want a change of scenery.

As one of only 15 luxury properties that can operate as staycation hotels, Hilton Manila has followed and even gone beyond the safety measures expected of them. “In preparing for the reopening to the local leisure market, we created an extensive plan very much underpinned by the global Hilton CleanStay program and aimed at upholding the Philippines’ Department of Health standards,” said the hotel’s general manager Simon McGrath in an email interview with Lifestyle.

Employees underwent rigorous training to uphold the hotel chain’s CleanStay protocols in the guest rooms, public areas, restaurants as well as areas not visible to guests, he added. The “noticeable changes” include a walk-through sanitation and temperature chamber at the hotel entrance followed by a health declaration and assistance from personal protective equipment-garbed staff to direct guests to their next destination. On their way to the check-in counter or to one of the hotel’s restaurants, guests will also notice the “very visible” hand-sanitizer stations at every elevator landing and at regular intervals throughout the hotel, and social distancing reminders in all high-traffic or queuing areas.

Hilton CleanStay seal

“Of high importance to all check-in guests, once they arrive at their room, they will find the Hilton CleanStay seal on the door. The seal is there as reassurance that after the room has been deeply cleaned, sanitized and inspected, no one else has entered their room,” McGrath said. Guests can then opt to have their room serviced when they’re out, although many guests now prefer not to during their staycation.”

All guests will find a personal sanitization kit in their rooms as well as extensive information on the 10 high-contact touch points that housekeeping staff focus on when servicing guest rooms. These include light switches, TV remotes, desks and thermostats, among others.

“There is a lot of interest from the local market,” says Hilton Manila general manager Simon McGrath.

Hilton Manila has likewise invested in nonvisible aspects as part of their pandemic response, foremost of which are the health checks and training that the staff undergoes.

“Their training is pivotal in delivering all aspects of the Hilton CleanStay commitment. We also undertake practices such as UV sanitization of cups and glassware that are then wrapped and placed in the rooms, much more regular cleaning and sanitizing in public spaces, and electrostatic spraying to sanitize all rooms before resale,” McGrath said.

Staycationing guests are required to undergo mandatory antigen testing prior to check-in. Those who come for a meal at any of the restaurants need only complete the health check and declaration.

McGrath remains optimistic. “There is a lot of interest from the local market and most are drawn to our amazing Vega Pool and facilities as well as the entertainment and dining options, since we are located in the heart of Resorts World Manila,” he said. “The room rates are also very attractive at the moment and even with testing costs, the total amount is still cheaper than the price of a room last year at this time. We recommend a two-night stay minimum to make it a true staycation!” INQ

Hilton Manila is at 1 Newport Blvd., Newport City, Pasay City; tel. 72397788.

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