A Day in the Life of a Hotel Room - The Swiss Cheese Story

You see all sorts as a hotel room. You’ve heard the saying “If these walls could talk”? It’s very true.

However, I’m a very discreet room – what happens in this hotel stays in this hotel. But, I am going to open up about our sanitisation routine. For me, it’s the most interesting thing that’s ever happened.

You’ll have heard about this thing called Covid-19, I suppose? At first it looked like the end of the hospitality industry for a long time but as science has rushed to catch up, we’ve been listening and learning. It’s not enough to just keep a hotel clean; we have to make sure guests understand everything we’re doing to keep them safe. Then they’ll visit and they’ll come back again, too.

That’s why we employ “Swiss cheese” methodology to ensure that I am clean and safe at all times. I’ve seen guests eat their way through a fair amount of room-service Emmental, so I understand the idea.

Take a look at the table below. No single measure will be enough on its own to keep Covid out. Each measure has a loophole that Covid can exploit. But when used together, Covid doesn’t stand a chance.

Surface cleaning

Here come the housekeepers to spray and wipe all my hard surfaces. They have a cleaning product approved to kill Covid, as well as other nasty bugs that humans spread. They are very thorough, but this on its own will not be enough to make me safe.

You see, traditional surface cleaning is the first slice of cheese. So long as an appropriate cleaning agent is used, it’s very effective at killing microbes on surfaces that guests might touch. It can leave surfaces disinfected and safe.

Surface cleaning is most effective when the cleaning fluid is allowed its “dwell time”: the time the surface should be left wet before wiping off. This allows the disinfectant or sanitising agent enough time to kill microbes. It can typically be as little as 30 seconds or as much as 10 minutes, depending on the product used.

BUT, the first person who touches the surface afterwards might contaminate the surface again. That is the first hole in the cheese. Also, surface cleaning can do nothing about contaminated vapour droplets in the air from coughs, sneezing and ordinary breathing. That’s the second hole.

But I’m not worried.

Anti-microbial surfaces

Before the housekeepers turned up with their trolley, the hotel management had installed anti-microbial bioactive surfaces. That sounds technical but it just means that touch points like light switches, door handles, taps, even fabrics used for curtains have been impregnated with long-lasting biocide that keeps on killing germs for up to 4 months!

This is the difference between cleaning and protection.

Also, surfaces treated with anti-microbial technology can be effectively cleaned with just a microfibre cloth and water. So, you can lessen your impact on the environment and reduce risks of aggravating guests’ allergies with increased use of cleaning agents.

One major UK supermarket is now using anti-microbial coatings on trolley and basket handles. I haven’t seen it myself: I don’t get out of the hotel much.

So, this is the second layer of cheese laid on the first to block some of the holes. We’re making progress, but there is still the issue of contaminated air to deal with. A significant amount of people who are infected with Covid catch it through droplets expelled by an infected person sneezing or coughing.

My management team thought of that, however.

24/7 Air Sanifier

The air that my guests breathe is continuously improved, so they enjoy better quality with me!

The 24/7 Active Air Sanifier unit that my hotel management team installed gives my guests peace of mind and brings them back for repeat visits.

The great advantage is that it’s safe to use while guests are in the room: it just works away quietly in the background, as a low-level continuous treatment, killing nasty microbes as it goes. This is protection again.

The only disadvantage, and this is the last hole in the cheese to block, is that, while it is completely safe and very effective, it is not guaranteed to kill 100% of all airborne pathogens.

It’s time for the last slice of cheese:


Full Room Ozone Purge

There’s one last measure to use, to be 100% certain of a completely clean and safe environment: Full Room Ozone Purge equipment.

This is a medical-grade, eco-friendly way to sanitise. It generates ozone to kill bacteria, moulds, fungi, remove bad odours, and is the only product on the market that inactivates viruses, including COVID-19. It completely sanitises all soft and hard surfaces and kills all germs in the air.

My management team has the option of deploying Full Room Ozone Purge equipment in here daily, weekly, with each new occupant or whenever they choose. And because the equipment is portable, they can target areas of the venue as and when they need it. The room next door to me had a full purge this morning and had a new guest safely checked in before lunch.

It is very powerful, so it cannot be used when there are occupants in the room. However, the equipment automatically converts ozone back to ordinary oxygen as it goes, so rooms and spaces are safe to use once the equipment is switched off.

So, there you have it: the multiple-layer, Swiss-cheese approach to keeping your guests, staff and visitors safe, generating trust with customers and boosting your occupancy and repeat business rate.

Free Assessment

To book your free venue assessment with the sanitisation experts at Elytraa Group, contact us on 01786 439839 or info@elytraa.com.