San Diego hotels are ready to reopen. Hallelujah? Cautious optimism abounds.
Following the coronavirus shutdown that began in March, the state of California has mandated that hotels can re-open on June 12, 2020.
Some properties remained open to essential workers during the quarantine. Whether that’s been the case or not, all hotels now have COVID-19 guidelines issued by the California Department of Public Health and the State Public Health Officer.
What will the new hotel normal look like? Along with social distancing and an abundance of hand sanitizer, expect: Smaller crowds/more privacy. More automated check-ins. Fewer (if any) visits by housekeeping. No in-room magazines or guides. Restrictions at amenities like pools and spas.
Will cabin-fevered travelers return to San Diego hotels in droves this summer? The San Diego Tourism Authority expects the early focus to be on driving-distance guests. The fear of getting back into airplane cabins and being exposed to coronavirus is still a reality.
Across the state and the country, enacted protocols vary from property to property. Do research before you book. Here’s a look at what to expect at three San Diego-based hotels as cautious travelers get back in the practice of booking getaways and staycations.
This new Little Italy property is part of the Curio Collection by Hilton. Highlights at Carté Hotel include the 360-degree-view Above Ash rooftop bar and a 28,000-square-foot Fit Athletic Club.
Carté has been open to essential workers throughout the shutdown. The property has provided room nights through the Hilton Frontline Medical Professionals Room Donation Program, according to General Manager Henri Birmele.
Birmele notes the hotel has adopted best practices identified by the County of San Diego, California Department of Public Health, Cal OSHA and the California Hotel Lodging Association.
New safety protocols include:
- Hilton’s new CleanStay with Lysol Protection program for sanitation.
- Reconfiguration of line areas.
- Restaurants are open and configured for six-foot social distance.
- Mandatory facial coverings for guests and employees in common areas throughout the hotel.
- Prohibiting employees from working if they display signs or symptoms of illness.
Deals: Hoping to attract travelers who want to return to San Diego hotels, a Carte California Residents Package includes complimentary breakfast for two adults, kids eat free, and parking for just $1 through July 31.
Harrah’s Resort Southern California
Not subject to state closure orders, this Indian casino in Valley Center (officially renamed Funner) reopened May 25. Harrah’s includes two hotel towers that house 1,065 rooms and a pool scene enhanced by a swim-up bar and a lazy river.
Harrah’s reopened with limited guest room availability and various areas of the resort with new cleaning and sanitation protocols, including:
- All guests are required to wear a face mask and must get temperature checks prior to entering the building.
- All teammates will wear personal protective equipment (PPE) and get temperature checks at the beginning of each shift.
- Security personnel will be prominent throughout the resort to enforce social distancing guidelines.
- Frequent handwashing and hand sanitizer stations are available throughout the resort.
- Slot machine banks are arranged to allow for proper social distancing, as defined by gaming regulations.
- Table games will be limited to a max of three players per blackjack table and four players per roulette table.
- Upon arrival, hotel guests may self-park in the valet lot (valet services will remain closed until further notice) and will enter the hotel through the resort lobby entrance.
- All guest rooms are thoroughly cleaned before and after each guest, and staff will not enter the rooms until guests have officially checked-out.
Pendry San Diego
The upscale Pendry San Diego in downtown’s Gaslamp Quarter is ready to get back to offering relaxed luxury and sophisticated design and décor to travelers.
Pendry San Diego is implementing an enhanced health and safety protocol program. It’s designed based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and includes:
- A temperature screening process for guests.
- An enhanced focus on overall cleanliness and hygiene, including increased frequencies of sanitization and deep cleaning for high-touch areas.
- Integration of the latest cleanliness technologies including the use of electrostatic sprayers.
- UV wands and devices, and particulate level air filtration systems.
- Complimentary guest access to ONE MEDICAL and their award-winning combination of cutting-edge technology and healthcare providers.
- Complimentary hand sanitizer and facial coverings will be provided to all guests.
- Each guest room will include an individual hand sanitizer and packet of disinfectant wipes.
- A snack menu, in lieu of an honor bar, will be made available for pre-order prior to arrival.
Deals: A Spirit of Now package, offers guests flexible booking and a resort credit of up to $300/night, as well as an upgrade upon check-in, based on availability. J&J