Sandals says its safety protocols 'a tremendous success to date'

Sandals says its safety protocols 'a tremendous success to date'

Friday, August 21, 2020

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Sandals Resorts is reporting that its comprehensive programme to protect staff and guests in the wake of the impact of COVID-19 has been “a tremendous success to date”.

According to Sandals, its properties in Antigua, Jamaica, The Bahamas and St Lucia have reported zero cases of coronavirus incidents for both guests and team members since the June 4 reopening of Sandals Grande Antigua, the first of chain's resorts to resume operations following the closure of the tourism industry in March this year.

The safety programme, dubbed 'Sandals Platinum Protocols of Cleanliness', was introduced several months prior to the reopening of the chain's resorts across the Caribbean.

“This is a strong message and excellent news for the industry, as we work toward getting the vital tourism sector back up and running in the Caribbean,” a Sandals release quotes the company's founder and Chairman Gordon “Butch” Stewart.

“I applaud the tremendous work that went into ensuring that we deliver the very best in terms of safety for both our guests and our team members, while at the same time ensuring we protect the safety of all nationals in the territories where we operate,” added Stewart, who is also chairman of the Jamaica Observer.

The Sandals Platinum Protocols of Cleanliness was established in collaboration with both local and international health agencies, including the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Pan American Health Organization.

The protocols encompass the integration of advanced hygiene practices across 18 key touchpoints at every resort, starting from the moment guests arrive at airport lounges through the entirety of their stay.

The touchpoints include the airport lounge; guest transfers to and from each resort; guest rooms, food and beverage experiences; housekeeping and laundry; elite services including butler service and Club Sandals concierge; maintenance; resort activities such as water sports; elevators; swimming pools, Jacuzzis and spas; team members access points; fitness centres and the Red Lane Spa; public bathrooms; suppliers and receiving; all public areas including lobbies and beaches; back of house facilities such as storerooms and offices; Kids Camps and waterparks at Beaches Resorts; and HVAC systems.

Among the extensive list of measures is for bell stations to be disinfected every hour with approved chemicals, buses must be sanitised before and after each trip, LED black lights are used by executive houskeepers and supervisors for room inspections, all bed linen are changed daily, bath tubs are disinfected with hospital grade disinfectant, and all equipment used for banqueting and events must be cleaned, disinfected and sanitised prior to assigning each shift.

Stewart noted that it was critical that tourism stakeholders find ways to innovate and adapt in the new normal that exists today.

“I believe all stakeholders must do what is necessary to help revive the tourism sector so that the entire community — farmers, tour operators, taxi drivers and service providers — all those who depend on it, are able to earn and take care of themselves and their families. We are proud that Sandals is once more helping to lead the way to recovery,” he said,

Managing director of Sandals St Lucia Winston Anderson said, “One of the key reasons behind the successful implementation of the safety protocols is the cooperation demonstrated by guests in adhering to the safety measures.”

He also noted that while 90 per cent of the guests who have travelled to Sandals come from the United States, the fact is those who travel take the utmost precaution to ensure they are healthy.

“Most US citizens would not run the risk of having to seek medical attention outside of the United States, so you find that most of the guests who come here have ensured they are not only negative for COVID-19, but are in very good health,” he said.

The resort chain said plans are underway to eventually reopen Sandals Barbados, Sandals Regency La Toc in St Lucia, as well as Beaches Turks and Caicos.

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