Analyzing the Impact of Covid-19 on Our Hotel and How We Are Managing It
By Jim Beley General Manager, The Umstead Hotel & Spa | May 2020
How has the COVID-19 crisis affected your business thus far?
The crisis has had a seriously negative impact on the hospitality industry as a whole. First, we began seeing conference cancellations in February, and then in March, there was a sharp decrease in all of our reservations. We finally made a decision in mid-March that we would temporarily close our doors on March 18, 2020.
Part of our reasoning there is that one of our largest business components is our spa, and we no longer felt comfortable keeping that facility open due to the virus. Then, we were mandated by the state of North Carolina to stop restaurant service and only offer take-out, which for a luxury hotel, is not feasible.
We also had to consider that we were in the midst of a hotel room renovation project, which consisted of renovating 150 of our guest rooms. We saw the temporary closure as an opportunity to advance the construction schedule, while not having to worry about disturbing guests.
Is your staff working from home? If so, aside from probable morale issues, what are the noticeable effects of this shift?
We have some members of our staff working remotely from home, such as our sales, finance, and human resources teams. Our finance and human resources teams have been incredibly busy during this time, as they are the ones assisting with the filing for the Paycheck Protection Program backed by the Small Business Administration.