Regular hotel renovations are necessary to ensure that your property remains profitable and competitive over time. Unfortunately, those renovations that are meant to attract future guests can easily drive current guests away if the work isn’t handled conscientiously.
Use these strategies during a hotel renovation to ensure that guests have a positive experience despite the disruption to your normal business routine.
Hiring a contractor that specializes in hotel renovations is your best defense against unhappy guests. They will understand the unique challenges that come with remodeling a hotel and the importance of minimizing the disruption to guests. They can also help you determine practical strategies for minimizing those disruptions.
Of course it’s important to plan your hotel renovation thoroughly before the work begins. However, in order to remain effective once the remodeling starts, your plan must be fluid.
Unpredictable setbacks are common during any renovation, just as unpredictable guest situations are common in any hotel. When combining the two, you have to be flexible enough to modify your plan frequently—even on a daily basis.
While your hotel is under renovation, you should isolate the work to one floor or area at a time. This will allow you to create buffer zones between guests and the noise and mess of renovation. To do this, simply leave an empty floor or an empty block of rooms above and below the area being worked on.
This will mean doing less business, but the alternative would be to field countless demands for refunds, acquire damaging reviews and risk losing formerly loyal customers.
Even with buffer zones in place, remodeling dust and debris cannot be entirely contained. While the hotel is under renovation, schedule your staff to clean hallways and other common areas more frequently than usual so that guests will still be greeted with a pleasant environment.
It may also be necessary to contact your hotel’s waste disposal company to schedule increased trash collection during your renovation.
Guests who don’t know that their hotel will be undergoing renovations are far more likely to form a negative impression—and express it online—simply because they feel lied to.
So, let people know when they’re booking a room during a renovation and explain the steps you’re taking to prevent any disruptions to their stay. Do the same on your website, as well as online travel agency sites that allow announcements.
Give your staff the tools to make amends to guests who have renovation-related complaints. This might include the ability to comp days, waive certain fees, award extra loyalty points, or offer free access to an amenity you normally charge for. Be sure to provide clear guidelines ahead of time on how and when these tools should be used.
With an experienced contractor, a flexible plan for creating buffer zones, an empowered staff and some good old-fashioned honesty, you can plan the most headache-free hotel renovation possible for both you and your guests.