Weeks after Kenya received the Safe Travels stamp of approval from the World Travel & Tourism Council, many hotels have been busy preparing to reopen. The Planhotel Hospitality Group, which manages the Diamonds Dream of Africa, Sandies Malindi Dream Garden and Sandies Tropical Village in Malindi, has raised the safety bar with what might be the most stringent safety guidelines in the industry yet. It is not a wonder they registered a 60% occupancy upon reopening last Saturday.
Alexander Zissimatos, the General Manager, is upbeat that this trend will continue. “We hope it continues for the rest of the year,” he said. Diamonds Dream of Africa, which is a member of the Small Luxury Hotel of the World (SLH), has incorporated the Stay Safe, Stay Small initiative. The initiative ensures all its 520 member hotels across 90 countries adhere to its detailed health and safety guidelines.
Through a partnership with the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), the group is further pursuing the GBAC STAR™ Facility accreditation. The gold standard accreditation is the cleaning industry’s only outbreak prevention, response and recovery certification, which helps facilities to minimise risks associated with biohazards and infections like COVID-19.
In addition to GBAC accreditation, Planhotel has initiated a 24-hour vacated room turnaround programme. “After the last guest has checked-out, no one, including our staff, will enter the room for 24 hours,” Alexander added. Social distancing around the eating places has also received emphasis. “We look forward to welcoming back our guests and assure them of a safe holiday,” he says.
Did you know that Planhotel has been running transferrable Holidaybonds since June 2020? The bonds, which are valid for two years, are usable at any of their three Kenyan properties. They offer an all-inclusive package (meals and drinks) for two for one night at half the usual price.