How Covid-19 Is Changing The Shape Of Hotel Space

How Covid-19 Is Changing The Shape Of Hotel Space

A hot topic in hospitality is the impact of COVID-19 on lobby space in hotels. While there are those who believe that the lobby is now a redundant space, there are others who think that it is an important area that must be adapted. Imad Dajani, CEO of FEBC International, shares his observations..

The lobby has a charm to it, and it can be what makes or breaks a hotel; it’s the first area that guests experience: a place to meet, drink coffee or wait. It is one of those spaces that brings people together. The question is how can we bring people together while maintaining a safe protocol?

Our procurement team has debated this topic with some of our clients and had whiteboard sessions that have yielded some interesting suggestions:
• More reception desks to speed up the check-in process
• In-room check-ins are a must, especially for hotels that attract business travelers
• Sourcing materials that are easier to clean and COVID-19 safe
• Greater emphasis on and higher budget allocation for an effective and larger cleaning team
• Budget hotels and boutique properties could introduce a fully operational online check-in and have less furniture and minimal entrance/lobby space.

With regards to procurement, it is essential for hotel owners to hire a procurement company that begins the entire process with a well-defined strategy. The factories and suppliers that are invited to bid for FF&E, OS&E and other items must be well versed and adaptable to the market trends.
Procurement companies today should have offices and production experts in key locations where pre-qualified suppliers are stationed. The reason this is so important is to ensure that all goods are monitored thoroughly before leaving the factory and being sent to site. This set-up enables procurement companies to save their clients a substantial amount of money on travel as well as conduct value engineering, variation

Imad Dajani,
CEO of FEBC International
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About author

Rita Ghantous

Rita Ghantous is a hospitality aficionado and a passionate writer with over 9 years’ experience in journalism and 5 years experience in the hospitality sector. Her passion for the performance arts and writing, started early. At 10 years old she was praised for her solo performance of the Beatles song “All My Love” accompanied by a guitarist, and was approached by a French talent scout during her school play. However, her love for writing was stronger. Fresh out of school, she became a freelance journalist for Noun Magazine and was awarded the Silver Award Cup for Outstanding Poetry, by The International Library of Poetry (Washington DC). She studied Business Management and earned a Masters degree from Saint Joseph University (USJ), her thesis was published in the Proche-Orient, Études en Management book. She then pursued a career in the hospitality industry but didn’t give up writing, that is why she launched the Four Points by Sheraton Le Verdun Newsletter. Her love for the industry and journalism led her to Hospitality Services - the organizers of the HORECA trade show in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan, as well as Salon Du Chocolat, Beirut Cooking Festival, Whisky Live and other regional shows. She is currently the Publications Executive of Hospitality News Middle East, Taste & Flavors and Lebanon Traveler. It is with ultimate devotion for her magazines that she demonstrates her hospitality savoir-faire.

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