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Loren seeing demand for staycations

Ocean view: The Loren has been catering to local guests

Luxury hotel The Loren at Pink Beach has booked 150 staycation reservations since it reopened on May 28.Demand has exceeded expectations, Sebastien Maingourd, The Loren’s general manager, said.Encouraged by the programme’s success, the three-year-old hotel on the former site of the old Pink Beach Club in Smith’s has launched a special club membership offer which includes five complimentary nights at the hotel.Bermuda’s hotels have been largely shuttered since LF Wade International Airport was closed on March 20, leaving more than 2,000 of the industry’s employees laid off.The Loren was the first to reopen to staying guests on the eve of the Bermuda Day holiday, offering discounted room rates from $350 a night, to lure locals unable to travel, but looking to treat themselves.The deal applies to stays taken up until June 30.As soon as the offer was announced, Mr Maingourd said the phone started to ring.“I think a lot of Bermudians had already made the decision to stay on the island for the summer,” he said. “I think people were waiting for this type of offer from a place where they could go and relax.”Of the 150 reservations made so far, most were for two-night stays, he added, giving guests some time to enjoy the hotel’s surroundings.Guests and hotel staff have been complying with health ministry guidelines on combating the spread of Covid-19.One of the results is that facilities including the pool, spa and gym remain closed. However, the restaurant is open for outdoor dining.“I anticipate a second push in demand when swimming is authorised,” Mr Maingourd said. “Many people have called and asked whether the pool is open. I think there are a lot of people who are interested, but prefer to wait until the pool has been reopened.”He hoped that would happen in Phase 3 of the incremental easing of government restrictions.That has proved to be the case, as last night David Burt, the Premier, announced that pools would be allowed to open in Phase 3 which starts on Thursday. Mr Maingourd said the resulting increase in demand would allow the hotel to bring more employees back — now there are about 25 staff working of the hotel’s full complement of 65.He said guests were enjoying the beach and dining on their balconies and in the restaurants and appreciated the necessity of obeying the rules. “The Government has done a great job of communication, so no one coming to The Loren has been surprised about the protocols, regarding masks and social-distancing,” Mr Maingourd said.The demand from locals looking for a summer holiday option on the island spurred the hotel into offering a special club membership deal, which costs $3,250 per couple with five free nights at the hotel included, running through to December.To cater to families, a day pass for the same period costs an additional $1,000, or free of charge for a child under 7.Membership includes discounts on many of the hotel’s offerings, including the restaurant and spa.Mr Maingourd said he was heartened by last week’s comments by the Premier, who said he would not give up on the summer tourism season.“We cannot wait — there is demand from people wanting to come to Bermuda,” Mr Maingourd said.• To view a hotel brochure from The Loren at Pink Beach, click on the PDF link under “Related Media”