Coronavirus Regulations – What national Lockdown 3 means for hotels

The New Year began with a great deal of optimism, but that early fizz felt a distant memory with the Prime Minister's sobering announcement on 4 January that England would, again, be subject to national 'lockdown' restrictions.

The implications for the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors are extensive and the determination, resilience and creativity that characterises the sector will again be required (along with financial support) in the weeks ahead.

Hotels have had a difficult time to put it mildly and may will again be closed for the next few weeks. Hotels are not able to open to paying guests; however it is worth remembering that there are some circumstances in which they may open – in other words they may remain open to receive guests in certain circumstances:

Hotels must only open for a person, who:

  • is unable to return to their main residence
  • uses it as their main residence
  • needs it while moving house
  • needs it to attend a funeral, linked commemorative event or following a bereavement of a close family member or friend
  • is isolating themselves from others as required by law
  • is an elite athlete (or their coach or parent ) and needs it for training or competition
  • needs it for work purposes, or to provide voluntary or charitable serve
  • is homeless
  • needs it to attend education or training
  • to visit a person who is dying
  • to care for a vulnerable person or seek respite from doing so
  • to attend a medical appointment or treatment

They can also open to:

  • to enable voting, including in an overseas election
  • to act as a women’s refuge or a vulnerable person’s refuge
  • for any purpose requested by the Secretary of State, or a local authority.

A Hotel's restaurant is required to close for guests dining in the restaurant or bar; however room service is permitted throughout.

We imagine that many hotels will decide that it is just not commercially viable to remain open given the limited circumstances in which paying guests may lawfully stay.  However there is a framework that allows for limited opening where this might be deemed desirable.

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