Over the last two weeks, hoteliers from eighteen REMOTE members in eleven Brazilian states welcomed local travel designers and shared how they have been dealing with the current situation and preparing for the future. The series of video calls Rediscovering Remoteness in Brazil represented an opportunity to strengthen the domestic market and get up-to-date information on how travel and hospitality protocols will be instated in the first moment after the pandemic.
Except for hotels in the South of Brazil, all lodging is currently closed, dealing with their community and staff, renovating hygiene protocols, purchasing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), investing in infrastructure improvements, training and updating their teams. “We’ve been closed since the end of March and we’re taking great care with the local communities and our employees”, said Augusto Costa Filho of Anavilhanas Jungle Lodge and Villa Amazônia hotel, both in the state of Amazonas. Claudia Baumgratz of Comuna do Ibitipoca in Minas Gerais has shared similar worries: “We believe we’ll take longer to reopen because we have an enormous responsibility to the local community”.
“We’re waiting to see the exact procedures that the health departments will indicate, but we started to study ideas of specific hours for the use of common areas, a la carte dining, social distancing and longer stays”, mentioned Luciana Sestari, commercial manager of Banana Bamboo Ecolodge in Ubatuba, São Paulo. “Everything is very new and there’s no use in taking any measures beforehand”, said Laura Ramallo of Maitei Hotel in Arraial D’Ajuda, Bahia, explaining that the staff is carefully studying all new protocols and procedures. Ahead of Parador Cambará do Sul, a hotel that have already reopened, and another one set to reopen soon (Hotel Wood), Rafael Peccin shared some of the measures they have adopted, highlighting that communication and transparency with clients has been imperative. “We are gradually opening the hotels, respecting government decrees. We are looking at it as soft openings”, he said.