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WASHINGTON (May 13, 2020) – The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) today expressed support for a number of elements contained in the HEROES ACT (HR 6800) that would improve upon the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to aid small business hotel operators and save millions of jobs.

With 70 percent of hotel employees laid off or furloughed, AHLA has consistently advocated for millions of hotel employees and the tens of thousands of mostly small business hotel owners. Measures which offer PPP loan flexibility, and extend the covered period to use loan proceeds are critical to keeping hotels open and hotel employees on the payroll until travel demand returns. As Congress debates additional funding, the hotel industry will be releasing a “Roadmap to Recovery” later this week laying out the industry’s top priorities in the next funding package.

The following statement is attributable to Chip Rogers, President and CEO of AHLA: 

“We remain grateful to the leadership of both parties as our nation works through one of the most difficult economic challenges we have faced. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the leisure and hospitality sector lost 7.7 million jobs in April alone. That is more jobs than construction, manufacturing, retail, education, and health services combined. With the impact to hotels being nine times worse than 9/11, the devastation caused to our industry is staggering and we are truly engaged in a fight for survival. ”

“The HEROES Act includes a number of important provisions that the hotel industry has long advocated for to support the millions of employees in our industry who have shouldered the brunt of this economic shutdown. By expanding the PPP, Congress would help save millions of jobs and support our small business hotel operators who make up more than 61 percent of our industry.”

“The hotel industry was among the first impacted and will likely be the last to recover. Without these important changes to PPP, and some reasonable liability protection, small business hotels won’t be able to survive with the ability to retain and rehire employees. Legislation which helps our employees while offering support to the thousands of hotel owners will ultimately strengthen the economy for everyone. We look forward to working with both sides of the aisle to ensure bipartisan support for swift action to pass legislation and get our economy on the road to recovery.”

 
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11th May 2020

Following the recent announcement of Marriott’s Q1 results;

Ralph Hollister, Analyst, Travel & Tourism at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view on the situation:

“Marriott significantly missed already lowered estimates for first-quarter profit. Alike its competitors, bookings plunged in the later stages of Q1 as restrictions on movement became more draconian around the globe. Factors that contributed to the loss that were specific to Marriott included guaranteed reserves of $148m, as well as impairment charges and bad-debt expenses.

“Although adjusted earnings of $0.26 per share severely lagged estimates, a total revenue of $4.7bn beat forecasts with franchise fees coming in at $415m, which was down 8% year-on-year (YOY). Marriott now places a strong emphasis on franchising, which has allowed the company to mitigate some of the impact of COVID-19. Wyndham has also achieved damage limitation this way, its asset-light select service franchise business model has put the company in a better position to deal with the impact of COVID-19. There are fewer fixed costs associated with this model.

“Marriott’s system-wide RevPAR plunged 22.5%, which is very similar to declines experienced by Hilton (22.6%), Wyndham (23%) and IHG (25%). This similarity may point to the fact that these companies have not sacrificed pricing power in order to stimulate any remaining demand that may have been present.

“In terms of net earnings, Marriott reported at total of $31m, Hilton turned a profit of $18m and Wyndham announced a net income of $22m. With the lowest RevPAR decline and highest net earnings in relation to its close rivals, Marriott looks to be in a solid position to navigate through this pandemic.

“Q2 results will reveal the full impact of COVID-19, all major companies advised that their Q2 numbers would look worse. It’s likely to be the worst quarter of the year due to an almost global restriction on domestic and international travel in this period. Hilton has already reported a system wide RevPAR decline of roughly 90% for April.”

 
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TORONTO, May 08, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA) is applying the latest disinfection technologies, including disinfection channels, antimicrobial coating and autonomous cleaning robots, at Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) to protect passengers and airport staff from COVID-19 infection.

HKIA is the world’s first airport where “CLeanTech”, a full-body disinfection channel facility, is trialled in live operation. Persons using the facility will have a temperature check before entering an enclosed channel for the 40-second disinfection and sanitizing procedures. The interior surface of the channel is equipped with antimicrobial coating which can remotely kill virus and bacteria on human bodies and clothing by using the technologies of photocatalyst and “nano needles”. Sanitizing spray is also applied for instant disinfection. The channel is kept under negative pressure to prevent cross-contamination between the outside and inside environment. Currently, the facility is designated for use by the staffs who take part in public health and quarantine duties at the airport in relation to arriving passengers.

Meanwhile, the AA is conducting a pilot test of applying antimicrobial coating at all passenger facilities. An invisible coating to destroy germs, bacteria and viruses is applied to high-touch surfaces in the terminal, including handles and seats of Automated People Movers and passenger buses, smart check-in kiosks and check-in counters, toilets, seating area in the terminal, baggage trolleys, elevator buttons, and more. After completion of the trial in May, the AA will consider implementing it as a long-term disinfection measure.

Autonomous cleaning robots are also deployed to ensure thorough disinfection of public areas and passenger facilities in HKIA. Intelligent Sterilization Robot, equipped with ultra violet light sterilizer and air sterilizer, is deployed round-the-clock in public toilets and key operating areas in the terminal building. The robot can move around autonomously and sterilize up to 99.99% of bacteria in its vicinity, including both the air and object surfaces, in just 10 minutes.

Steven Yiu, Deputy Director, Service Delivery of the AA, said, “The safety and wellbeing of airport staff and passengers are always our first priority. Although air traffic has been impacted by the pandemic, the Airport Authority spares no effort in ensuring that the airport is a safe environment for all users. We will continue to look into new measures to enhance our cleaning and disinfection work.”

For more information on Hong Kong, please visit www.discoverhongkong.com/ca and www.hongkongairport.com.

 
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(TORONTO, ON – May 8th, 2020) – In celebration of Mother’s Day, the Windsor Arms Hotel and Cerise Fine Catering will be donating to Nellie's Women’s Shelter in Toronto on May 10th, 2020.  For hundreds of moms in the city, Mother’s Day will be spent with their children in the safety of women’s shelters. The Windsor Arms Hotel wants to make sure these mothers are celebrated by providing a memorable afternoon tea experience for all the mothers at Nellie’s Women Shelter.

Moms will enjoy an assortment of fresh scones, savory sandwiches, and decadent desserts prepared fresh by the Windsor Arms Hotel and Cerise Fine Catering.

"For many women and children living in shelters, the lack of holiday celebrations in their homes re-enforces their sense of loss. It is because of that that we try hard to create positive memories for women and their children during holidays and on Mother's Day”, said Jyoti Singh, Executive Director of Nellie’s Women Shelter.

“This year, due to the impact of COVID-19 on the shelter, our usual Mother's Day brunch was in jeopardy.  I cannot thank the Windsor Arms Hotel enough for donating Afternoon Tea to all the residents staying at Nellie’s this weekend, and for the dedicated staff working to keep them safe.  The support we have received from organizations like the Windsor Arms has been truly amazing”.

“Celebrating Mother’s Day and experiencing the legendary Windsor Arms Afternoon Tea is a long-standing tradition. With the chaos that the world is currently experiencing, it is that much more important to take whatever pleasure life offers and celebrate.  The Windsor Arms is pleased to extend its Afternoon Tea to the ladies and children living at Nellie's to ensure that they, too, can partake in this celebration, “remarked George Friedmann, President of Windsor Arms Hotel.

Earlier this week, the Windsor Arms Hotel launched an exclusive limited time package Mother’s Day Tea at Home” available from May 1st to May 17th to continue its  Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea tradition, all while staying safe in the comfort of home. 

 
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MISSISSAUGA – As businesses seek solutions to keep employees and customers safe, Canada’s leading pest control provider has announced their new Orkin® VitalClean service designed to quickly eliminate a wide variety of pathogens.

The Orkin® VitalClean™ service uses a Health Canada-registered disinfectant labeled for use against a wide variety of pathogens and is included on Health Canada’s list of products that meet their criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. When applied at full strength in accordance with the product label, it will kill 100 per cent of bacteria and viruses on hard, non-porous surfaces and will also sanitize soft, porous surfaces.

"Orkin® VitalClean™ is an effective option for helping reduce risk and restore a safer and healthier business environment which is critical to getting our economy up and running again," said Rob Quinn, Senior Vice President of Operations, Orkin Canada. "This product has been used for years to disinfect commercial facilities after pest cleanouts. We are now pleased that it can serve a broader public health purpose as well.”

In dense places where people congregate, if high-touch surfaces such as countertops, fixtures and public seating are not disinfected, harmful viruses can spread rapidly. Just like frequent, careful handwashing is a basic measure for humans to stave off virus transmission, regular large-scale disinfection is imperative to helping keep establishments where people shop, eat and work as protected as possible.

For more information, visit: www.orkincanada.ca/commercial/services/vitalclean/

 

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