In the middle of march the general ban on tourism was imposed in bavaria. Exceptions are allowed only for business travel. In bad kissingen, therefore, the grandhotel kaiserhof victoria continues to offer such travelers its rooms, complete with service, without any skimping. At the same time, the 70 employees decided to support all helpers and people in need in the spa town as much as they can, free of charge, during the current crisis.
The very day after the state government’s decree, assistant director sandy berthold therefore wrote to the city hall, the health department, the bavarian red cross (BRK) and all the city’s doctors and pharmacies on behalf of all the employees, offering "you and our fellow citizens" the possibility of a return to germany the support in the form of in-house material and services at. "We are not doctors and we are not physicians, but we want to do our part where we can", began this two-page letter.
Employees of the state government and health authorities as well as medical staff are allowed to stay at the hotel free of charge until further notice. Overworked employees in doctors’ offices and pharmacies can have snacks delivered from the hotel kitchen if needed. The hotel team would also be happy to provide a hot meal every day for those who are particularly at risk from the corona virus (senior citizens, nursing cases), should it not be possible for them to provide for themselves. The employees of the grandhotel kaiserhof victoria are also happy to take care of necessary errands such as grocery shopping or pharmacy visits free of charge.
So far, however, no use has been made of this generous offer, sandy berthold reported when asked by this newspaper. Since the position of hotel director is currently vacant, the assistant manager is currently in charge of the grandhotel opposite the wandelhalle together with hotel consultant lars von der wettern (solutions HI). Doctors and pharmacies had expressed their gratitude for the generous offer, but had not yet taken advantage of it. The BRK has announced that it will still be able to provide care for the needy with its own resources.
Also oberburg mayor kay blankenburg (SPD) thanked all employees of the hotel immediately after the letter arrived, added lars von der wettern. "It was very emotional for our team", such thanks are, after all, an acknowledgement of the selfless helpfulness of all the employees.
Although currently only one or two of the 166 hotel rooms per night are booked by business travelers, and the occupancy rate of the usual room occupancy in march has dropped from 60 percent to just over ten percent, all 70 employees are still on duty in shifts. From the witter: "we really want to keep our team together. This also applies to employees on probation."
However, the kaiserhof victoria also had to announce short-time work for half of its employees. The management is still waiting for approval. But even at half strength, the aforementioned offer of help from the employees is to remain in place until further notice, assure sandy berthold and lars von der wettern.
The hotel business has collapsed almost two weeks ago. But at least this way the renovation work that started months ago can be completed unhindered. After demolition work during the winter months, work is currently being carried out on the inside of the hotel. The remaining 50 rooms will be completely renovated and refurbished from scratch. A new Ã la carte restaurant will be built to the left of the foyer, while the old one will be converted into a library. The previously two-story spa area will in future have three floors for an expanded wellness offering, and the inhalatorium, which was closed down years ago, will be converted into a conference building with five rooms. Although this work is also progressing more slowly at the moment, as not all the workmen can be active at the same time due to the required safety margin, hotel consultant lars von der wettern hopes that all construction work will be completed in april.
Because the tourist season was supposed to start at easter time. But whether vacationers will be allowed to stay in the grand hotel on kurhausstrabe again is still in question. "We don’t turn down bookings", lars von der wettern explained in response to a query. "But always under the reservation of the legal permission. So both sides are in the know."