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Hotel group goes extra mile in Aviemore against Covid

By Gavin Musgrove

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Macdonald Aviemore Resort have described their clean bill of health on Covid as 'A testament to the strenuous efforts our team'.

The comment came today from Iain Miller, managing director.

“The inclusion of Macdonald Aviemore Resort and our nearby sister resorts Macdonald Spey Valley and Macdonald Lochanhully on the hospitality industry’s recently-published list of Safe to Trade venues is testament to the strenuous efforts of our team who have worked so hard to ensure that all measures have been correctly implemented.

“The health, safety and wellbeing of our customers and staff are always of paramount importance, particularly in current circumstances.

"We are very grateful to everyone, local and from further afield, who has supported us since we reopened in July.”

The resort has been deemed as going above and beyond Covid-compliant Government guidelines to ensure the safety of its guests.

Scheme gives assurances of the high Covid-19 precautions in place at Macdonald Aviemore Resort
Scheme gives assurances of the high Covid-19 precautions in place at Macdonald Aviemore Resort

The resort's hotels are on a list of 175 across the UK – with 31 in Scotland – to be given the assurance by the nationwide Safe to Trade Scheme.

Macdonald's Lochanhully resort at Carrbridge and the Spey Valley Golf and Country Club in Dalfaber have also been included along with The Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh and properties operated by Hilton, Malmaison and Hotel du Vin hotels.

The newly-launched initiative helps holidaymakers to identify which hotels, bars, restaurants and cinemas are going the extra mile to ensure the safety of both their staff and guests.

The scheme has been launched by top-ranking hospitality safety experts.

It is an independently verified safety standard for hospitality businesses that are not only compliant with, but also implementing measures that go above and beyond the government’s guidelines for trading during the pandemic.

Mark Flanagan, who chairs the Safe to Trade Scheme governance board, commented: “We are delighted to announce the first 175 UK hotels to meet our stringent standards and be deemed as Safe to Trade.

"For those customers looking to make the most of what’s left of the summer with a UK staycation but who want to do so as safely as possible, the Safe to Trade Scheme provides peace of mind. "Customers who consult our register of approved venues at safetotrade.org.uk can search for a hotel by name or location and be confident that every approved hotel that features on the list complies fully with the law.”

The hotels will now work with the experts at the scheme on an ongoing basis who will audit their safety practices against its safety charter to ensure that they are running a Covid-compliant operation.

This information made available to the public so that they can make informed choices about where they patronise.

Each of the 175 establishments now feature on a national register, that holidaymakers can consult to find a safe to trade venue, which is regularly updated following honest feedback – both good and bad – from staff and customers.

Mr Flanagan said: "If a customer sees something concerning at a venue or wants to share a positive experience, then they can simply scan the QR code on the venue’s Safe to Trade window sticker, or visit the Safe to Trade Scheme website, search for the business to feedback anonymously as well as rate the business.

"This is then fed back to the hotel, and outlet managers and owners are encouraged to adjust and adapt their practices to ensure that their business stays Covid compliant and safe.”

The Safe to Trade Scheme is spearheaded by Shield Safety Group, alongside a Governance Board of top-ranking industry experts including John Barnes, the ex-Head of Local Delivery at Food Standards Agency and Geoffrey Podger, the former CEO of the Health and Safety Executive and Food Standards Agency.

The register is also made available to local and national safety regulators, to assist with their requirement to risk rate businesses and a full list of current approved venues can be found at: https://safetotrade.org.uk/safe-to-trade/search/

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