ORLANDO, Fla. – Club Wyndham Bonnet Creek is the first major resort to reopen near Disney Springs after the coronavirus pandemic shuttered thousands of businesses, and guests will immediately notice changes.
Senior Vice President of Resort Operations Kevin Maciulewicz said there is a new curbside check-in service.
"Via tablet we can check someone in as they drive up to the lobby and get them on their vacation without going into the lobby," said Maciulewicz.
News 6 took a tour of the property and noticed mobile handwashing stations at the pool.
“We’ll have a reservation system in the pool. There will be three hour periods our owners can utilize them and that gives us the opportunity to disinfect them in between and maintain social distancing measures,” said Maciulewicz
During the first phase of reopening, the resort is only allowing vacation club owners to stay there and they expect to fill the full 25% maximum capacity by the weekend. They are implementing new policies to abide by guidelines outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention like limiting the number of people in elevators.
Social distancing stickers and signs are posted throughout the resort. Plexiglass has also been installed and the staff is required to wear masks. The resort said its concierges will monitor the lobby and pool to make sure new policies are being followed.
Club Wyndham Bonnet Creek said the six-week closure due to the virus has affected their bottom line, but didn’t say exactly by how much. They did say they took advantage of the downtime with renovations including the pool deck and splash pad.
Just like Disney Springs - this resort says they will continue with a gradual approach to opening up - to maintain the safety of its guests.
"We're going to be cautious, we're going to do it right, and people will have a great vacation," said Maciulewicz.
Some amenities will remain closed including the arcade and food and beverage services. The suites have a kitchen so the resort is offering grocery delivery services for families who want to cook their own food.
With the reopening, the resort said it has brought back more than 25% of its staff so far.
Resort officials also reported bookings for August are only 1% off from reservations made in 2019, and September and October bookings are tracking 20% ahead of 2019 reservations.