Broome County hospitality industry braces for ‘new normal’

first_imgWik-Grimm says when she and her husband decided to open a Bed and Breakfast, they knew Binghamton was the place to do it. But, as discussions about reopening the economy ramp up that could soon change. “We need to eliminate some of the gathering spaces within the building so we don’t have groups of guests gathering together which has always been a big part of the B&B experience,” she says. (WBNG) — As of May 4, Broome County regulations don’t allow hotels and Bed and Breakfasts to book guests from outside the county. “We may end up providing that breakfast buffet but not allowing guests into the dining area so it’ll be more of a take it to go and eat in your room kind of thing,” he says. On the other hand, Wik-Grimm stresses that if guest houses like hers are going to survive in a post COVID world, they are going to need to work with event planners to make sure tourists feel comfortable coming to stay in the area. Now she says as the Bed and Breakfast is eyeing a June 1 reopening, the COVID-19 crisis has forced them to turn the classic business model for a bed and breakfast upside down. “It really comes down to lowering occupancy instead of ever allowing full occupancy at most we’re going to be doing a few rooms at a time that allows space between guests,” says Pamela Wik-Grimm, owner of The Park House Bed & Breakfast on Park Ave in Binghamton. center_img Marcus Peeples, manager of the Farfield Inn by Marriott Binghamton says the need to eliminate socialization is not unique to the Bed and Breakfast experience. Not only that, but with many big-draw summer events cancelled, Peeples says local hotels need to shift their marketing focus. “As an industry we need to communicate with event partners that we’re here to make their guests feel comfortable,” she says. “We’re not going to give up on that now and we’re not going to walk away from that now.” Experts in the local hospitality industry say for that to happen, operators need to understand that there is no going back to the way things were before. “We did a lot of market research and really thought about where we wanted to be,” she told 12 News. “I think there will be a greater need for health care travelers or even those who are in the construction industries,” he suggests. last_img

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