How are you and your team and what are you doing during lockdown?
Well that depends on who of us you speak to. There are a dozen of us that have been working full time and then the other 210+ team members are at home under quarantine/curfew and have been there since 25 March. Those working are actually living in the Three Bedroom Hillside Pool Villas on site so that we can do our own cooking, cleaning and washing because all the laundry and culinary teams are at home. I have definitely channelled my inner domestic goddess in the last 2 months! When not gardening or cleaning the pools, we have been working on enhanced protocols for hygiene and sanitisation, ensuring that we read and consider every WHO, CDC, regional government, local government and tourism/hotel paper or discussion on protocols. We are taking everything into consideration and have come up with what I think are some very solid processes which will create a sense of safety and comfort for both guests and team members when they return (hopefully the latter before the former as we have much to do still in terms of a good spring clean).
How do you envisage travel in the region over the next 3-12 months?
Short term (3 months) I think it will be slow because people will want to wait and see, don’t want to have to go through too many checks and tests, or be on the beach in a mask etc and of course we are about to go into low season here in the Caribbean. I am hoping for a decent Aug – Oct and leaning towards a positive uplift and good demand from November onwards, especially for festive season.
What positive outcomes will you take from this crisis?
You mean apart from learning that I can cook, clean and garden? Jokes aside, it has been an excellent opportunity to assess our vision, mission and values and address some of the things we do not have time for when we are busy with our gorgeous house guests. I also feel that we have grown together as a team, leant on each other in the beginning when it was like some crazy dream, and now all just itching to get on with it and excited to almost see the light at the end of tunnel.
Narelle McDougall is the general manager at Silversands, Grenada.