DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Binghamton GM Michael Pemberton told 12 News he’s lost close to 90% of his business due to a lack of traveling and guests staying at the location. Additionally, any room that is occupied by a health care worker, traveling nurse or doctor is closed off for 4-5 days after checkout to give the room time to breathe and keep the cleaning staff safe. Over in the Town of Dickinson, the Fairfield Inn by Marriott in Binghamton GM Marcus Peeples was forced to let go of all but four of his employees, and estimates the total revenue lost so far is around half a million dollars. But while the hotel business may be struggling now, Peeples and Pemberton are optimistic about the future. “Thankfully we have money saved in the bank that we can used for rainy days, and this is certainly one of them,” Pemberton said. “It is unprecedented because look, I’m in the hotel business. The last thing I want to do is turn a guest away,” Pemberton said. “If they’ve got a pandemic that’s pretty high in those areas, absolutely [I turn them away] because I can’t take the chance on my other guests or my employees.” Both general managers added the hotels have been made available for essential workers at discount prices Pemberton told 12 News the DoubleTree has added hand sanitizing units for guests and employees to use, in addition to wiping down common touch points throughout the day. “This isn’t a time to look for how much money we can make,” Pemberton said. “This is a time to be smart and be available for people who need lodging.” At the Fairfield Inn, Peeples is having a plexi-glass shield installed at the front desk, is allowing any employee to wear gloves and/or masks, and has eliminated hand-to-hand contact with guests. But despite the lull in guests, the hotels are still keeping the areas clean and safe for any guests that may arrive. But both hotels have taken an even deeper measure, going as far as to deny guests a room if they are coming from a highly contaminated COVID-19 area. With the advisory, hotel general managers have been forced to make tough decisions over the last few weeks in order to keep their businesses going. “Times like now you’d have a sold out hotel. Now it’s like a ghost town,” Peeples said. Broome County is currently under a travel advisory, in which County Executive Jason Garnar asked the public to travel only if it is essential. (WBNG) — Hotels in Broome County have not been immune to the coronavirus crisis, and the impact it has left on many small businesses. “Things will be greater later, for sure,” Peeples said with a smile.
“It’s like a ghost town”: Hotel GMs speak out on recent struggles