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August 2020

Wynn Resort Leads The Way With Clean Re-Opening

By Steve Eubanks

Many courses remained open throughout the nationwide coronavirus shutdowns. But those that did close, particularly in resort and hotel operations, found that the re-opening process required creating and implementing new procedures to ensure the safety and comfort of customers once they returned to the first tee.

Las Vegas was among the first major cities to re-open fully. The intention was for the casinos and resorts to dip their toes into the water and slowly wade in from there. But when the city, which survives almost exclusively on tourism and convention business, reopened, it wasn’t with a trickle. Fears that the contagion might keep tourists away drowned quickly as people flooded the gaming floors and restaurants. The city plunged into the re-opening quickly and fully from the first of June onward. 

Golf was a big part of that. The Wynn Resort, which boasts a spectacular Tom Fazio-designed golf course, the only one on The Strip, re-opened with full tee sheets and ample enthusiasm.

This presented a number of challenges. In addition to the Back2Golf protocols, operators at the Wynn had to make sure that guests coming out of the hotel and onto the course or vice versa were not endangering others. To achieve that goal, the resort changed its protocols and procedures to include:

The use of thermal cameras at every entry point of the property. These high-tech cameras (the stuff you see in spy movies) detect if any employee or guest who has a temperature greater than 100 degrees F. Anyone who shows a temperature over that level is taken to a private area for a second temperature check.

Single golf carts and social distancing advisories that are posted throughout the property. Accommodations have also been made to all the amenity areas to keep guests at least six feet apart.

Hand Sanitizer is now available at all entry points, as well as near the counter in the golf shop and on the first tee. The locker room, spas and other amenity areas have ample and well-placed sanitizers as well.

The resort re-trained all employees, including its golf staff, on COVID-19 safety and sanitation protocols.

Like everyone in this time, Wynn monitors and informs all its staff on the latest COVID-19 data every day.

Signage has been added throughout the property to remind everyone to avoid touching their faces, to wash their hands and to wear and dispose of masks properly.

The resort also increased the frequency of cleaning public spaces, including all surfaces in the golf shop and locker rooms as well as the restrooms and other outdoor areas where golfers tend to congregate and touch things.

Every guest is provided with an amenity bag when they check in. The bag includes masks, sanitizers, wipes and a COVID-19 awareness card.
“We will continue to refine and update the plan as our experts provide us more advice,” said Wynn Resort CEO Matt Maddox. “I understand that if we incrementally reopen, we might have to pull back if a spike in cases occurs that jeopardizes our healthcare system capacity. However, the only way to cross this river is one stone at a time, and we need to put our feet in the water before it is too late.

“This plan presents what we are doing to keep our guests, employees and our community safe. Each operating department has its own customized set of procedures.” 

The plan was expensive, and the re-training proved arduous at times. But the influx of guests into Las Vegas required a lot of preparation and painstaking detail.

Other operators could learn from the Wynn. Not everyone has to reconfigure their floorplans and triple their cleaning budget. But those who do it right can provide lessons, good and bad, to the rest of the industry.

 


 

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