Making Changes Due to Covid-19
“The pandemic changed the world, and how we operate,” says Kyle Johnson, General Manager of the Princess Royale Oceanfront Resort.
Johnson spoke with us about the new procedures that the Princess Royale has put in place due to the covid-19 crisis. The resort took these steps out of concern for the safety of guests and associates. They looked at recommendations for best practices from industry groups and the guidelines laid out by state and national organizations to protect everyone. Staff will be wearing appropriate PPE(personal protective equipment)- masks & gloves. Staff will also have their temperatures checked before they go to work areas each day. Other operational changes to ensure health and safety for guests and staff has been implementing staggering of shifts to make sure not too many people are together and less than 10 people in a meeting.
Check-in and Check-out
Traditional check-in and check-out will go away. All process of check-in and out will be in advance or online. No more pens for a signature or credit cards exchanged at the desk. Guests will be told when their room is ready by text and/or phone calls. Now guests can pull up to the front door and be met by attendants that have their key ready. The Princess still has card keys but is looking to replace this system until then the keys will be a one time use.
Housekeeping Throughout Resort
Johnson told us , “The Princes Royale already had a very good process for housekeeping team,” but cleaning protocols will change. They will not just be cleaning but making sure sanitizing and disinfecting happen, with focus on high touch areas. Public areas like elevators will now be cleaned more often throughout the day and night. The resort removed things that cannot be cleaned or easily replaced from rooms such as room directories. Directories will be going digital; information found in the directory will be on app or the website. Other items you won’t see at the resort anymore are house phones or door handles to the public restroom since they were high touch places. Room turnover will also include replacing everything in a room that can be replaced and all linens and pillows are bagged and machine washed right away. Housekeeping’s daily room cleaning will only happen when the guest is not in the room. Guests can opt out of daily cleaning too if they would prefer. Electro static sprayers were purchased. They cover surfaces better than conventional sprayers and will be used in rooms and throughout resort. ESS allow for less contact too as associates can spray an area and not need to wipe it down.
Food and Beverage
Due to social distancing that will need to be maintained, food service will change. The kitchen will be open. The restaurant and bar will not be open. The resort will offer a grocery delivery program. When you arrive in your room your refrigerator will be fully stocked if you request it. Room service will be offered. Outdoor dining will be offered when the weather is nice, and tables will be placed far enough apart to maintain social distancing. The atrium is being looked at as an option for dining since tables could be placed far enough apart. We asked if the restaurant would be opened at a later date, but Johnson said not this year. “We don’t feel that would be the best experience for guests to need to sit every other booth. The atrium, outdoor dining, and our ballroom allow for the social distancing. That is a safer and more attractive environment. We want to create an escape for them as best we can.” The resort plans to partner with other local restaurants that could offer food delivery or dining services as another way to make the guest experience more enjoyable too.
Other Amenities Changes
The Spa will not be open right away and the Princess is waiting on timelines from the government about when it can open and services offered.
Children’s Activities will be offered. They will be smaller groups of kids and done outside.
The resort currently is creating a small arcade room. They will be making sure the number of people inside the arcade is limited.
Pools are currently closed. The Princess is waiting on guidance about this as well. They need to find out how many people will be allowed in a pool.
With new changes Johnson said, “We are excited to get people back to work and get our guests back into Ocean City in a safe and responsible way. We could still have a really good summer. We are optimistic and hopeful for a bright future for us all.