Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa shows how hotels have changed amid COVID-19 pandemic

SONOMA, Calif. (KGO) -- As business start to reopen, we take a behind-the-scenes look at how one Sonoma hotel is planning to safely reopen after three months of being shut down due to COVID-19.

Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa is busy getting the property ready to open its doors to guests on July 1.

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For the last three months, many hotels have been closed due to the novel coronavirus. It's been a very difficult time for the hotel industry, but there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel.

In an effort to help build a better Bay Area, ABC7 News spoke with Edward Roe, General Manager of the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa, about the changes that are going into effect on the property and what guests will experience during their stay.

"When they come into the lobby, we have the perspex glass screens at the front desk, and staff, we're going to be wearing face masks. Upon arrival, we will be issuing face masks, I guess, and encouraging them to wear them while indoors around the property. And we also have these amenity kits which has hand sanitizer and wipes as well as the mask in the kits for every single guest who are staying with us," explains Roe.

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The property has been busy meeting safety guidelines to ensure employees and guests are safe and able to practice social distancing.

"So the main thing is the protocols to make sure that everything is correctly sanitized, and we keep our social distance from the guests and the guests from us. So we've been creating signage around the property explaining to our guests what I capacities are of the pool, what our cleaning procedures are, etc.," Roe said.

Roe goes on to mention the importance of sanitizing properly.

"The products that we're using are from Eco Lab. And so we're utilizing that to make sure that we do all the high touch points. And also every single guest room is rested for 48 hours from the time when the guest checks out to when the next guest checks in."

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As the hotel takes steps to reopen, not all amenities will be offered right away. The spa will not be opening just yet, because they're waiting on Sonoma guidelines, but the pool, al fresco dining options, outdoor fire pits and grassy areas throughout the 14-acre property will be available to use.

With many worried about traveling and staying in hotels, Roe explains how the resort is going to extreme measures to bring confidence to guests.

"Our standards are at a higher level than what is being mandated. So that's how I can as General Manager feel comfortable opening on July the first and there is a whole checklist that we've had to go through that has to be signed off by my boss to say that it's okay to for us to open. It's everything from bringing back two colleagues, two hours of training, temperature check protocols and our house check protocols for colleagues coming to work, mandatory PPP for colleagues, masks, gloves in high touch point areas, making sure that social distancing is in our employee cafeteria, all those things are part of the protocols to make sure that not only our colleague, but also our guests are safe."

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