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Creating a safe Mauritius holiday environment

13/05/2020

Beachcomber Resorts & Hotels is gearing up for the post-COVID-19 recovery phase and reopening of its resorts with a SAFE PLACE label which the Group has developed for its eight hotels in Mauritius. The initiative stems from a partnership with LIBA, an ISO 17025 accredited international bioanalytical laboratory that already carries out regular unannounced food safety and room hygiene audits, accompanied with sampling and testing, across all hotels of the Group. These audits from now on will include certain additional control measures.

As a pioneer and leader in the Mauritian hospitality industry, Beachcomber Resorts & Hotels’ is committed to providing its Artisans, Guests, Contractors and Visitors with a Safe and Healthy Environment. This is clearly set out in the Company’s Safety & Health Policy and part of our numerous safety protocols and procedures with comprehensive monitoring analysis by trusted agencies like SGS, QuantiLab and LIBA. The Group is taking a major new step in terms of safety and health requirements with the SAFE PLACE label. The aim is to better reassure guests and Artisans alike of all health, hygiene, safety and environmental requirements in place while meeting changing needs, especially against the backdrop of the COVID-19 health crisis.

The SAFE PLACE label showcases strict safety, hygiene and cleanliness standards. This benchmarking programme promotes reinforced practices in all Beachcomber hotels. New measures implemented include: health checks for all hotel Artisans; the presence of an infirmary within our hotel with a nurse or a doctor on call ; ongoing training programmes on preventive health measures for all our Artisans; the application of a cleaning and disinfection protocol in line with World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendations, including specific procedures with particular attention to cleaning and disinfection of frequently touched surfaces in rooms coupled with SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) PCR tests.

To better reassure guests, Beachcomber Group is also redefining certain aspects of the guest journey. Masks, for instance, are recommended in situations where social distancing cannot be adequately maintained. The layout of the restaurants’ tables and chairs will be reviewed to promote adequate social distancing and à la carte service will be prioritised over self-service buffets. Furthermore, guests will be required to take a shower before a spa treatment and a limited number of them will be allowed at any one time in our fitness centre studios and classes.

“Our responsibility as a hotelier is to safeguard the health and wellbeing of our guests and Artisans; this is the case now more than ever with the pandemic. This labelling scheme, developed in conjunction with LIBA, will enable us to welcome our hotel guests and teams in the best of conditions and ensure their health and safety are adequately taken care of. It is clear that health and safety requisites will be of the greatest importance when choosing a hotel and holiday destination in the future. It is therefore important to take the necessary steps to make travellers feel safe and confident,” says Beachcomber Resorts & Hotels’ CEO, Gilbert Espitalier-Noël.

The SAFE PLACE certification builds upon a set of health and safety measures that are already in place in the Group’s hotels. “Safety & Health has always been a major concern and requirement for Beachcomber. With this new SAFE PLACE label, we are taking another step in meeting enhanced guest expectations in these times of COVID-19 pandemic,” says the Group’s Chief Officer Operational Excellence, Geraldine Koenig. The Group, as part of its risk prevention approach, has implemented over the years a comprehensive safety programme including HACCP certification for its hotels, annual Legionella Risk Assessments, water sampling and testing, as well as Indoor Air Quality monitoring, coupled with unannounced food safety audits and hygiene checks, whether that be by SGS, QuantiLab and LIBA, and as part of a continual improvement approach.

ABOUT LIBA

LABORATOIRE INTERNATIONAL DE BIO ANALYSE LTEE (LIBA) is an ISO 17025 accredited independent, multidisciplinary testing and research laboratory.

LIBA is a Mauritian company that was founded in 2013 following the buyout of an existing laboratory. Drawing on two decades of expertise, it brings together local and international professionals. The company’s fields of activity are microbiology, chemistry, serology, parasitology and molecular biology. The laboratory provides specialist support to hotel operators and food and beverage producers who are concerned with food quality and safety and the environment as well as healthcare facilities and health monitoring services.

LIBA has leveraged its recognised technical and scientific capabilities as well as its strong values to rapidly expand through adding audit, training and consulting to its laboratory services in the food industry. The range of expertise provided covers product development, sensory testing and root-cause analyses of process deviations to help strengthen quality systems and ensure lasting improvements.

The ISO 17025 accreditation and LIBA’s interdisciplinary scientific strengths also position the company as an accredited provider for clinical and preclinical testing. Regular studies are conducted with international institutions in the context of research projects to advance healthcare treatment innovations. In these times of health crisis, it is worth noting that LIBA has the required equipment and expertise to contribute to the fight against COVID-19 (PCR and serological tests).