Hotel beds are always kind of gross, even under the best of circumstances. But that's doubly true during a worldwide pandemic.
On that note, Inside Edition recently conducted a sting operation to determine just how much of a shit high-end New York City operations give when it comes to sanitizing their rooms during the time of the coronavirus. As it turns out, the answer is not a whole lot.
Here's how it worked.
The syndicated newsmagazine checked into three different hotels in Manhattan where they (in their terms) used a "harmless, washable spray" to ink their logo onto pillows, bed sheets, and towels. This spray was only visibile with the use of a UV light. They also put "a special washable gel" on the rooms' TV remotes, desks, and thermostats.
Producers for Inside Edition then mussed up the beds to make it look like they were slept in and then checked out. The next day they checked back into the same rooms under a different reservation/alias to see how thorough of a job each location did in disinfecting their rooms.
The first stop, The Hyatt Place Times Square, reportedly did a lousy job. Inside Edition says the logo was still glowing brightly on the bedsheets and pillow cases. The desk was wiped, and the towel was replaced, but the TV remote also still had the gel on it.
A Hyatt spokesperson responded to the report with the following statement:
“We are deeply concerned about the situation described, as it is not representative of Hyatt’s rigorous and enhanced cleaning protocols that have been deployed globally due to COVID-19. We are working with the hotel’s owner to ensure the hotel is implementing proper cleaning protocols that are consistent with Hyatt’s commitment to cleanliness for the safety and wellbeing of our guests.”
At the second stop, The Hampton Inn Times Square Central, IE found that the pillow cases and sheets were also the same (again, kind of gross, even without the coronavirus). The remote control and thermostat weren't wiped down either.
That place, which is independently owned and operated, also put out a statement regarding the report. In that statement they said:
“Our hotel's cleanliness is one of our highest priorities, especially during these unprecedented times. An internal investigation revealed that our housekeeping team relied on a visual inspection of the room’s cleanliness to determine which areas received attention, deviating from our protocols. This is a violation of our standards to thoroughly clean each room. Both our housekeeping team and management apologize for this mistake and we are retraining our team members to reinforce our procedures.”
The third hotel to be tested was the Trump International the overlooks Central Park. IE reports that the room they booked had a nightly price tag of almost $600. The room came with a PPE "welcome kit," which contained cleaning supplies and a mask. The report on that room said that the sheets and bathroom towel had been changed (so technically better than the last two) but the pillow case had not. Also the desk and remote weren't wiped down.
That hotel has not given a response.
Let this serve as reaffirmation for any existing traveling neuroses you had in relation to hotel beds.
Inside Edition's entire report is set to air on Monday night.