How Big Hotels Are Keeping Themselves Clean for Travelers in the Summer of 2021

Courtesy of Goodstone Inn.

Mountain cabins, RVs, and other accommodations where travelers can socially distance are booking up. Meanwhile, some large hotels are dangling promotions to fill rooms. What’s a big hotel to do? Come up with a badge of honor, of course.

In December, Forbes Travel Guide began awarding “Sharecare Verified” badges to properties that self-report meeting more than 360 standards, including cleaning and ventilation (and that pay for the Verified evaluation tool).

Along with DC hotels such as the Willard InterContinental and St. Regis, destinations in this region that have earned a badge include Boar’s Head Resort in Charlottesville; the Tides Inn in Virginia’s Northern Neck; Goodstone Inn and Salamander Resort & Spa, both in Middleburg; the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond; Inn at Perry Cabin in St. Michaels; Nemacolin in Pennsylvania; and the Williamsburg Inn and Williamsburg Lodge.

Is a seal of approval the best way to predict risk? Who knows? By February, Forbes—the same media company behind the badges—suggested other ways of figuring out what’s safe in an online article “The Top Ten Best Places in America to Travel Right Now and Avoid The Pandemic.” Using then-current data on Covid, it recommended locales that had seen few virus cases. On the list—with, at the time, a seven-day rolling average of zero new cases—was Hot Springs, Virginia, home to the Omni Homestead Resort.

This article appears in the May 2021 issue. 

Editor in chief

Sherri Dalphonse joined Washingtonian in 1986 as an editorial intern, and worked her way to the top of the masthead when she was named editor-in-chief in 2022. She oversees the magazine’s editorial staff, and guides the magazine’s stories and direction. She lives in DC.