Please take time to read this important information.
Whilst the vast majority of the country went into lock down we were already making preparations for you to return to The Downs. For the first 12 weeks Ed worked full time refurbishing the exterior of the building and made big inroads into refurbishment of the public areas.
Ever since we were given our opening date we have been studying and evaluating the ever changing guidance so that we can give you the same levels of service and closest experience you enjoyed prior to this massive change in society, whilst adhering to advice and guidelines to keep our guests, colleagues & community safe.
Our sole aim is to help you to enjoy a safe and comfortable break. We hope that by working together we are able to do this.
As you know, we work hard with our experienced staff to have comprehensive cleaning routines and protocols. We are pleased to note that many of these are already in line with COVID-19 secure procedures.
Using government guidance and resources from UK Hospitality, AA and Visit Britain, we have now completed our COVID-19 specific risk assessment. All actions & procedures have been implemented to ensure that we are safe and compliant. We are currently working with our employees to ensure they complete their training in COVID19 mitigation & transference prevention before we welcome you back.
We are aware that the situation & guidance is continuously changing, we are committed to reviewing & updating procedures where necessary.
To give you confidence that we and colleagues are working together with guests to keep you safe whilst you visit us,we want to share with you a little information about how things are changing to deal with COVID-19. This may change at short notice so please do keep checking the website.
We would ask that you show understanding and work with us, for us all to own the responsibility in this newly changed environment. So that together we can continue to make The Downs a comfortable welcoming retreat where we all feel relaxed, safe & comfortable.
Our Guests & your bookings.
We are working hard to be as flexible as we can whilst being ever mindful of our responsibility to our staff, guests & suppliers to remain as financially viable as possible. Therefore all bookings for the time being will remain fully transferable without charge. A small non-refundable deposit will be required to secure your room which will remain against your account should you need to transfer. We are currently unable to take bookings without this non-refundable deposit.
If you or any of your household are notified as a close contact & therefore have to self isolate, or if you experience COVID-19 symptoms such as a high temperature, a new persistent cough, or a change to your sense of taste or smell, we must ask that you do NOT travel to us, follow government guidance and contact us immediately to reschedule your visit. If you are displaying symptoms we are not allowed to accept you.You are not allowed to self isolate at the Downs Hotel.
We ask that any guest arriving to the UK from overseas within 14 days prior to their arrival at our premises contact us before travelling to us, to discuss their booking.
We ask that all guests adhere to social distancing guidelines at all times.
We have installed regular hand sanitising stations throughout the premises at strategic points for you to sanitise your hands when moving from one area to another, and we ask you regularly wash your hands using the 5 step technique. Notices are displayed around the premises. We have installed sneeze screens at the main face to face points.
Other ways we are keeping everyone safe; this is not an exhaustive list.
Keys,pens & flat surfaces will be cleaned between guests/customer use.
Our staff will still show you to your rooms, but we ask that you let them lead and observe social distancing at all times.
We shall still offer a daily housekeeping service to all guests should you require it. You can also choose a simpler replenishment service, or have no servicing at all. This question shall be asked when we carry out our pre-arrival calls to you and reconfirmed again upon check in should you reconsider in the meantime. If you choose to have the room serviced the room must be vacated whilst servicing is carried out.
Good ventilation is also seen as best practice to limit risk. We therefore ask that all guests open balcony doors and/or windows to aid ventilation where practicable before leaving for the day.
Ornamental cushions & comforters are viewed as 'collateral' so have been moved as directed. Blankets remain in the wardrobes, but should you use them we request these are placed in the shower or bath tub at the end of your stay so they can go through the laundry procedure. For the time being we are unable to offer slippers and dressing gowns, so please bring them with you should you require them. Everything else in your room is disinfected between guests.
We shall still offer assistance with luggage but we request that bags do not exceed 20kg (if you struggle to lift it we certainly will), luggage can be delivered to your room door only (we shall knock to advise its arrival).
We ask that priority is given to people coming down the stairs.
Our staff will carry cleaning kits and will disinfect touch points when they move through public spaces, stairwells & corridors.
Whilst the public toilets will be available, we would ask residents use the toilet facilities in their room where practicable to reduce the risk of transference.
In the restaurant, you will as usual have a table allocated to you for the duration of your stay. Seats will be at least 2 metres apart when facing another party, seats less than 2 metres apart will have the risk of transference mitigated by being placed back to back or side to side.
Tables & contents will be disinfected after every sitting.
Please use the hand sanitiser before ringing the restaurant doorbell to let us know you have arrived.
The buffet tables have been removed. We will still offer these items but you will now need to order them from our staff at your table before we take your hot food order. Cutlery will be delivered once you are seated.
Our staff will not wear face masks as they will adhere to social distancing. Interactions will be courteous yet brief. They will be happy to help so please ask do not hesitate to ask should you require anything. We understand this may, at busy times, prolong your breakfast service, but we did not want to diminish the experience of a Downs full breakfast. We would thank you for being patient whilst these directives are in place.
At the bar we ask that once drinks are ordered guests return to their seats and our staff will deliver drinks to you. We would also ask that empties are left for our staff to collect. Guests are currently not permitted to sit or stand at the bar.
The bar will be open to residents only, non residents will be asked to order at the window.
We ask that all guests adhere to social distancing between parties whilst in the bar.
In order that you get the best from your holiday we strongly advise you to pre-book activities & restaurants, as currently very few are operating walk -ins.
Full details of where to look to see what is open can be found by following these links.
As usual Kate is available from Mon-Sun 8.30-4 so please contact her by phone email or social media to discuss availability. All booking deposits, will remain non refundable but will be fully transferable to a future visit should we be locked down again.
We look forward to welcoming you back to The Downs. Call Kate now on 01803 328543.