Have you ever walked into a hotel lobby after a long day of travel, took a deep breath, and something smells off. Maybe you noticed a stain on the carpet or water marks on the ceiling. Hotels can withstand a lot of daily wear and tear but over time these little flaws accumulate and negative issues begin to show.
Moments like these demonstrate why maintenance is a core component of hotel management and one that directly affects the guests’ experience. Within the first 60 seconds of being in the hotel an impression is already being formed and you want to make sure it’s positive. So how can responsible hotel owners keep guests from forming these negative perceptions? Stay on top of maintenance! Knowing what is most likely to fail in your hotel and being proactive to address those issues will help ensure that your guest’s first 60 second impression is positive.
What are some common aspects of hotel maintenance that can make or break a guest’s experience? Here’s a short list of things to keep top of mind:
Want to make a good first impression before guests even walk through the hotel doors? Make sure maintenance of the hotel exterior is a top priority. A clean exterior, landscaping, clear signage, ample lighting, and even the condition of the parking lot all contribute to an aesthetic that will draw guests in and keep them satisfied. Chipped paint, poor lighting, and other unsightly issues can instantly diminish a hotel’s reputation and your guest’s experience. Maintenance tasks may include having the exterior power-washed, freshening up the paint, replace lighting, and ensuring that landscaped areas are properly watered.
Guest safety is a top priority. Ensure that sprinkler systems are working properly and that all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors have fully-functioning batteries. Nothing ruins a good night’s sleep faster than a smoke detector beeping and begging for batteries. Routinely monitor locks on the exterior doors, bedrooms, conference rooms, storage closets and other areas in the hotel. Other security measures include checking to make sure the alarm systems and fire extinguishers work properly.
A power outage can disrupt a single household, let alone a hotel full of guests. Aside from having to deal with disgruntled guests, you are losing money in finding them new accommodations. By periodically checking electrical panels, plugs, outlets and circuit breakers, you can prevent large electrical problems in advance. If you have an aging system it may be time to consider an upgrade. And, routinely check that all of the electrical outlets in your hotel rooms function properly. Guests now plug in more devices than ever before!
A lamp with a bad light bulb can leave an unfavorable impression on hotel guests and pull the maintenance staff away from prior obligations. That’s why it’s important to implement a system where staff consistently checks the hotel’s lighting needs. Also, with so many consumers and businesses adopting green lifestyles, stay up-to-date on the most energy-efficient lighting solutions for the hotel. Whether it’s keeping the lights dim during the early hours of the day and increasing the intensity during the night hours or installing automatic timers in locations, these measures can help you reduce costs and keep guests satisfied. Perform routine inspections of lighting in guest rooms, common areas, and outdoors.
Heating and Cooling Systems
By performing routine checks and maintenance of the hotel’s heating and cooling system, you are ensuring the guests’ comfort all year round. Issues like inefficient filters, blocked heat ducts, and HVAC leaks can set your budget back by unexpected and expensive repairs. Do inspections on all possible issues, whether is deficient temperature, reduced air flow, or unfamiliar noises and smells. Inefficient or broken PTAC units are not only expensive to replace but they also directly affect a guest’s experience and overall impression of your property.
Plumbing issues can cause a lot of damage and represent some of the most costly and unsightly maintenance failures. Hotel maintenance plans should include inspecting plumbing lines on a regular basis for any sign of rust, leaks, cracked pipes, toilet malfunctions, water pressure, as well as water damage to the floors and ceilings. Also, make sure housekeeping staff have a reliable way to report any possible plumbing malfunctions or water damage they may notice upon guest check-out. The plumbing maintenance plan should also include preventive measures for mold and mildew.
Maintaining flooring isn’t just about keeping things clean. With many high-traffic areas involved you need a tough, durable and solid flooring that can withstand a lot of foot traffic and luggage carts wheeling back and forth, and still look good over time. Keep a running list of unsightly chips, bumps, or stains. Or, consider polished concrete floors using a durable concrete sealer, which protects the concrete floor from dirt discolouration as well as moderate erosion.
Do any of these maintenance issues seem too big to address? GLR specializes in hotel renovations and can find the best solution for your property both now and for your long term investment.