The Student Hotel, has kept all its locations
across Europe open since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic providing a
safe haven for students and others guests stranded and unable to get
home, or choosing not to return to their own countries, as well as health
workers and others, TSH founder and CEO Charlie MacGregor said in an
online operational update video interview.
“We’re going to be open until we don’t have any customers. And then to be
honest, we expect not to close. We’ve reached out to embassies, we’ve reached
out to NGOs, to the Salvation Army and the Red Cross in some cities. We’ve
reached out to the army, local hospitals, of course, doctors and nurses, providing
accommodation for them. We’ve been able to really utilise the fact that we have
resident guests, so we’re not going to close for them, they’ve got nowhere to
go,” Charlie MacGregor said.
“We’ve been able to provide accommodation to people who have been kicked out
of other hotels and we’re trying to help this situation in any way we can, because
it’s a time when everybody’s stepping up,” he added.
The Student Hotel has a total of 14 operating locations across six European
countries including The Netherlands, Spain, Germany, Austria, Italy and France,
with more than 5,000 rooms. Although occupation numbers are fluctuating
considerably day-to-day due to varying local pandemic conditions, MacGregor
said there were between 25 to 400 residents staying at TSH locations in
European countries in the week before Easter.
He emphasised that safety is the number one priority for TSH personnel and
guests, with the company putting screens into its receptions, instigating extra
sanitizing of all touchpoints, such as lift buttons and door handles, and enforcing
deep cleaning of rooms and communal areas. All restaurants have been closed,
but TSH still provides breakfast bags at designated pickup tables, or drops these
off outside people’s bedrooms.
“One of our main roles for all of our guests is in really providing a listening ear.
They are in lockdown in quite small spaces, but social distancing is still important
even in the hotels. So, all the activities we normally do in our common spaces,
we’re now doing on our online platform,” he said.
Each TSH hotel has ‘connectors’ who organise community events and this
platform has been taken online and greatly extended from local locations across
“We have language lessons, cooking workshops, mindfulness sessions and stress
relieving clinics. We’ve got keep-fit sessions and parties with DJs holding mini
virtual nightclubs. We’ve had hundreds and hundreds of people signing up to
over-capacity on the online sessions. Everything we did offline we’re now doing
online, which for us as a company is also really interesting, because it’s given us
the opportunity to test these virtual and online tools and really see that they can
work,” MacGregor concluded.
Source : Company