Businesses as dependent on tourism as hotels are hurting badly during the COVID-19 crisis. Their rooms and restaurants are empty, and their chefs and concierges are furloughed. But some of them are making an effort to remain relevant during this time of isolation, reaching out the public to offer new virtual entertainment and education programs.
Dromoland Castle, a 16th-century castle-turned-hotel in Ireland, is a spectacular place to stay and imagine centuries long-past. Now, the hotel has teamed up with local artist Una Heaton and made a 5-minute video guide on how to build a homemade replica of the castle for home play, a great way to occupy children with cabin fever.
Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp and Resort in Thailand is a spectacular lodge overlooking elephant habitat on the Mekong River. During its closure, staff have put up webcams to livestream the elephants’ favorite bathing pools and feeding sites.
The Four Seasons Hotel in Washington D.C. is teaching life skills, with infographics showing how its staff do its world-renowned 12-step turndown service to make going to bed a relaxing experience.
The Resort at Paws Up, a wilderness resort in Montana, is using Instagram Live to teach travelers stuck at home a series of wilderness skills, including fishing, foraging, and the perfect s’mores. Obviously, some of these won’t be able to be practiced just now, but the resort’s tips do promise a return to normal, which is comforting.
The Monteverdi Tuscany Hotel, which often hosts performers in its lobby during ordinary times, is now helping to support artists who have had their shows canceled or postponed, sponsoring home performances from opera singers and musicians.
Many of us, even those of us who don’t travel regularly, are feeling cooped up by the necessary restrictions on travel and interaction. It’s comforting to see so many travel destinations reaching out to us at home, providing us with virtual entertainment and letting us build mental itineraries that take us around the world.
Photo: Dromoland Castle in Ireland. Credit: Shutterstock