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How about working from your own hotel office?

By LAI S. REYES, The Philippine STAR Published Aug 13, 2020 8:23 am

As the pandemic continues and more cases emerge in the country, the hospitality industry — one of the hardest hit by the pandemic — is bracing itself once again with the implementation of the stricter modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) in Metro Manila and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal. 

The industry struggles anew to find ways, not just to recover, but also to survive.

Robinsons Hotels and Resorts (RHR), for instance, is converting some of its hotel rooms into private offices and now offers long-stay services to stay afloat.

A typical Home-To-Go room measures 18 square meters, with twin beds (only two people are allowed per room) and a private bathroom.

At the launch of its Home-To-Go and Working-On-the-Go programs, the hospitality arm of Robinsons Land Corporation gave an update on how it’s addressing changing consumer demand amid the pandemic, while ensuring the safety of its guests in all its properties.

“Under the new normal, working remotely is the name of the game,” said Joy de Mesa, group director of sales and marketing at RLC. “The work-from-home setup has allowed many businesses to continue their operations while keeping their employees safe and sound in the comfort of their own homes.”

This inspired RHR, the company behind the Go Hotels and Summit Hotels chains, to come up with its latest innovative product: Working On-the-Go.

Robinsons Hotels and Resorts are converting some of their hotel rooms into private offices and now offer long-stay services.

Starting at P16,200 net per month, guests at Go Hotels in Ortigas and Mandaluyong can now enjoy the privacy of their own 18-sqm. office space. Should you wish to have the space furnished with office tables and chairs (good for up to two persons), just pay an additional P3,600 per month.

The Working-On-the-Go setup is also offered at Summit Hotel Magnolia in QC and Greenhills for those who need a more spacious office environment. Here, a bare unit measuring 30 square meters is available for P27,000 net per month, while a furnished office space for two persons costs P33,000 net.

Go Hotels Ortigas has 198 rooms, Go Hotels Mandaluyong has 223 rooms, Summit Hotel Magnolia has 82 rooms, while Summit Greenhills has 100 rooms. Around 30 percent of the rooms at these hotels will be converted into private offices for rent.

The top-of-the-line package, which offers an adjoining room and office measuring a total of 56 square meters, is available at Summit Hotels Greenhills for P48,000 net. You can start working as soon as you book the room. The rate is inclusive of utilities such as power and water. Free cleaning services are also provided each week. Wi-Fi access up to 1 mbps per person is included in the package.

Arthur Gindap, senior vice president and business unit manager, Robinsons Hotels and Resorts (RHR).

Your home away from home

RHR’s Home-To-Go program, on the other hand, was originally planned for its Bridgetowne township in Quezon City.

“Home To Go is how we envisioned Bridgetowne’s ‘dormitel’ (dormitory-hotel) to be. It’s already a product we were working on for Bridgetowne, but this was pushed forward because of the pandemic, the need and the demand,” explained Arthur D. Gindap, senior vice president and business unit manager at RHR, during the media briefing. 

RLC is set to open its first dormitory within its Bridgetowne township in QC by late 2021. The property will have 640 rooms and over 2,000 beds.

“Our five-year plan is to actually add about eight to 10 dorms countrywide,” added Gindap.

“Under the Home-to-Go program, Go Hotels Ortigas has 30 to 40 rooms occupied,” enthused De Mesa.

The reason why the product is very attractive is because of the proximity of the properties’ locations to Robinsons Malls.

“Most or all of them are actually located beside Robinsons Malls,” noted Roseann Coscolluela-Villegas, director of public corporate public relations, RLC.

At present, Home to Go is offered at Go Hotels Otis-Manila, Go Hotels Ortigas Center, and Go Hotels Mandaluyong. These facilities provide a practical solution for young professionals and university students seeking an ideal space near their offices and schools, and one that suits their budget.

Manila’s traffic conditions have gotten worse and because of the pandemic, taking public transportation under the new normal is even more difficult.

“By booking a Home to Go room at a Go Hotel near your office or school, you not only save on transportation costs, but also save hours of precious time and eliminate traffic-related stress,” added De Mesa.

Guests can access the Home-To-Go Pantry 24/7, where they can find a microwave oven, toaster, refrigerator, water dispenser, and iron/ironing board to conveniently serve their needs.

While cooking in the room is not permitted, long-staying guests can prepare their meals at the common area pantry found on each floor. However, meals for as low as P100 per set can be ordered online. Weekly meals can also be ordered in advance, as food order forms are provided via QR meal ordering to guests every week.

Summit Hotels and Resorts are also offering all-in accommodations for a minimum stay of one month at P22,000 net per room in Greenhills, Magnolia, Tagaytay, Galleria Cebu and at P20,000 net per room in Circle Cebu and Tacloban.

(For booking inquiries, call 999-994-2066.)

Be optimistic, but realistic 

According to Gindap, RHR’s expansion plans and the opening of its seven hotels “will be slightly delayed” due to the ongoing crisis.

These seven hotels are Summit Hotel Naga, Go Hotel Naga, Go Hotel Tuguegarao, Westin Sonata, Summit Gensan, H2G Bridgetowne, and Fili Hotel in Bridgetowne.

“Even if we went full blast, there just wouldn’t be people there to take our new hotels,” he added. “And because of this pandemic, we expect consumers to tighten their purses.”

With RHR’s portfolio of budget brands like Go Hotels and upscale brands like Summit Hotels and Dusit Thani Mactan, Gindap said he’s confident that they can still handle the business well.

“It would take as much as 12 months and might even be up to 12 to 18 months for the company to recover and return to our pre-COVID-19 numbers,” Gindap added. “We need to be optimistic, but also realistic.”