CHLA Launches ‘Clean + Safe’ Reopening Plan

SACRAMENTO, CA—The California Hotel & Lodging Association (CHLA) has launched the “Clean + Safe” program, which provides the two essential elements needed for a hotel to successfully reopen—guidance for hoteliers and confidence for travelers.

The program directs hoteliers with a six-page checklist of protocols for properly protecting guests, staff and property. After meeting the requirements, a hotel receives a decal of compliance that can be prominently displayed in strategic locations throughout the property to reassure guests.

According to the CHLA, Clean + Safe is the first reopening initiative in the country that is customized for a specific state, and is available free of charge to association members.

“Coronavirus orders and restrictions in our state pose a real labyrinth for hotel owners because there is little consistency between California’s 58 counties and hundreds of municipalities,” explained Bijal Patel, chairman of CHLA. “Our program helps overcome this challenge by featuring lots of flexibility—it can be adapted easily by big and small hotels, for urban as well as rural areas, in both more and less restrictive communities.”

The program is also the first reopening resource that considers independent properties, according to the association.

“About 40% of our member properties are independent, non-branded hotels, so they cannot benefit from the reopening programs introduced in recent days by various brands,” added Patel. “While the brands have set the reopening standards for their properties, we at CHLA are setting the reopening standards for our state.”

CHLA’s members operate almost a quarter of a million rooms at properties that range in size from small “mom-and-pop” operations to hotels with as many as 3,000 rooms.

“Hotels are where travelers go to get ready for the next day on the road, expecting to find accommodations that are clean, comfortable, and dependable, especially in this new post-coronavirus world,” said Lynn Mohrfeld, president/CEO of CHLA. “Our new program will give guests the confidence and peace of mind they so desperately want and deserve because we are reassuring them that their hotel environment is safe and under control.”

According to Patel, another important feature of “Clean + Safe” is that it is proactive.

“We are showing the public and our legislators that the hotel industry can start returning to normal without undoing all the work and sacrifice that has been put in by all of us during the past few months—and especially without the need for excessive legislation and burdensome government regulations,” said Patel.

Added Mohrfeld, “The task of reopening a hotel is daunting, but hoteliers will get there by doing the work in small, manageable chunks. Our program helps by laying out a practical, low-stress way to protect the stay of guests and the investment of owners.”