Best Western to consider turning hotels into temporary hospitals to provide beds for virus patients

Rob-Paterson x

Best Western Great Britain is to consider turning hotels into temporary hospitals if the NHS needs additional bedspace during the Coronavirus outbreak.

The independent hotel group is to discuss the move this week as it meets with its members across the country.

Rob Paterson, chief executive officer, Best Western Great Britain said: “We are in unprecedented territory so we would be willing to take unprecedented steps to support the national effort.

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“If the NHS wants additional bedspace, and we can partner with other companies to provide the right medical equipment and supplies and we can do it safely, then we would be willing to start having those conversations immediately. Whatever we can do to help.”

The Covid-19 outbreak hit at what was looking like a positive period for Best Western bookings.

The group had seen growth in year-over-year bookings for January and bookings by departure month for January and February were also up. The trend since the end of February has been the opposite.

Cancellations for February to March 7 have shown a ‘significant increase’ over the previous period and bookings by departure for March to July are showing varying degrees of decline.

This is reflected across the industry.

Best Western Great Britain portfolio currently comprises more than 280 hotels across the country.

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Zoe Monk

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