Winnipeg, MB October 30 2020 -- The Best Western Plus Pembina Inn & Suites in Winnipeg received the coveted M.K Guertin Award, Best Western® Hotels & Resorts’ most prestigious honor recognizing top-performing hotels within the company. The award was presented this week at Best Western’s first-ever Virtual Convention in front of a large virtual audience consisting of hoteliers across the company’s brand portfolio, corporate staff and senior leadership, and industry partners and peers.

The M.K. Guertin Award is held in high regard as hotels that receive this award best represent the vision of Best Western’s founder and demonstrate exceptional levels of quality, guest satisfaction and dedication to the brand. The hotels must also meet other brand standards and membership requirements to qualify for this award.

The Best Western Plus Pembina Inn & Suites is one of only 60 hotels out of more than 2,200 Best Western-branded properties in North America to receive this award.

“The M.K. Guertin award holds a lot of meaning to our brand, as it is named after our founder, and recognizes properties that best demonstrate our foundational commitment to providing superior customer care,” said Peter Kwong, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Best Western Hotels & Resorts. “It’s a privilege to recognize the Best Western Plus Pembina Inn & Suites with this award, as this outstanding hotel team delivers extraordinary guest experiences and serves as a leading example of our brand.”

Best Western Hotels & Resorts’ Virtual Convention presented a unique opportunity for the company to gather and celebrate its many success despite the unprecedented challenges of 2020. Award recognitions such as this one were among the many meaningful highlights of the event, and reinforce the brand’s unwavering commitment to lead the industry in superior customer care.

Located at 1714 Pembina Hwy, the Best Western Plus Pembina Inn & Suites features 104 rooms and From laundry services and airport pickups to pet-friendly rooms, it's our unspoken goal to exceed your expectations and make your stay with us a memorable one.

Each of our newly renovated rooms is air conditioned and includes a complimentary hot breakfast, free WiFi access and free outdoor parking.

For reservations, call the hotel directly at 204-269-8888 or call Best Western’s 24-hour, toll-free number at 1-877-269-8811. Reservations are also available through


ST. PAUL, Minn. – Oct. 30, 2020 –Ecolab, the global leader in water, hygiene and infection prevention solutions and services, received approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer. The product is the first registered by the EPA to kill the virus that causes COVID-19 in 15 seconds – the fastest product available. The Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer is one of the innovative solutions powering the new Ecolab Science Certifiedprogram, advancing the program’s mission to help deliver a higher level of cleanliness to the places people stay, eat and shop, like hotels, restaurants and grocery stores.

Ecolab’s advanced chemistries, including Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer, are key to helping restaurants and other businesses meetheightenedexpectationsforcleanliness and more stringent regulations to help reduce the risk of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19 and other viruses. Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer is a concentrated, no-rinse, 2-in-1 cleaner and sanitizer designed for use on any hard, non-porous food contact surface – from the front of the house to the kitchen.

Leveraging Ecolab’s extensive expertise and science-based public health and food safety knowledge, this versatile cleaner sanitizer has been tested and proven effective against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Ecolab offers the concentrated product for use in spray bottle or electrostatic spray applications. It is one of only three electrostatic spray products proven effective against SARS-CoV-2. 

“Restaurants, hotels and foodservice facilities are working harder than ever to ensure cleaner, safer environments that help protect people and build consumer confidence,” said Michael Johannsen, Ecolab executive vice president and general manager of Global Institutional, the Ecolab division that serves the hospitality industry. “In addition to simplifying hygiene procedures, Ecolab’s Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer provides unmatched sanitizing efficacy, killing the virus that causes COVID-19 faster than any other product on the market.”

Ecolab’s Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer, one of the innovative solutions powering the new Ecolab Science Certifiedprogram, simplifies restaurant hygiene procedures by combining an effective cleaner and sanitizer into one solution without the need to rinse between cleaning and sanitizing or before contact with food. When used in an electrostatic spray application at a disinfection concentration, it can disinfect large indoor spaces efficiently and effectively, from destination dining locations and hotel restaurants to food prep areas behind the customer counter.

Developed using insights from proprietary Ecolab consumer research and informed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)guidelines,Ecolab Science Certified is a comprehensive,science-basedprogram that combines hospitaldisinfectants, food-contactsanitizersandothercleaning products with a detailed training program and a periodic auditing process conducted by highly trained Ecolab field specialists. After meeting rigorous program criteria, customers can display the Ecolab ScienceCertifiedsealtoletconsumersknowabouttheircommitmenttoworld-classhygiene.

Ecolab has one of the broadest product portfolios for use against SARS-CoV-2. Including the Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer, Ecolab offers 12 products tested and proven effective against SARS-CoV-2 and registered by the EPA. And Ecolab offers more than 50 products that are listed on the U.S. EPA List N for use against SARS-CoV-2. In addition, Ecolab products are proven effective for use against SARS-CoV-2 in dozens of countries around the world, including the U.S., Canada, Australia, Brazil, and throughout Europe.

For more information about Ecolab’s Sink & Surface Cleaner Sanitizer or to order, contact your local Ecolab representative or visit To see how the Ecolab Science Certified program works, visit


Washington (October 28, 2020) —  Support for the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s (AHLA) Safe Stay initiative continues to grow with endorsements coming from leading scientists, physicians and public health experts in epidemiology and infectious disease.

The new endorsements come from the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the Association for Linen Management which represents the personnel involved in the textile care industry, as well as a certified industrial hygienist andformer infectious diseases epidemiologist with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention and World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Murray CohenSafe Stay is an industry-wide initiative focused on enhanced hotel cleaning practices, social interactions, and workplace protocols to meet the new health and safety challenges and expectations presented by COVID-19. 

The latest version of the Safe Stay protocols includes newly-released CDC guidance on hotel operations including meetings and events. Safe Stay includes enhanced guidance on elevator operations, food service operations and workplace health safety plans.  The Safe Stay guidelines also feature the latest CDC recommendations on daily room cleanings to limit in-person contact. The CDC recommends, “guestrooms occupied by the same customer over multiple days should not be cleaned daily, unless requested.” 

The top priority for the hotel industry has always been the health and safety of guests and employees. Through Safe Stay, the hotel industry continues to be recognized by public health officials and industry partners for our leadership on implementing rigorous health and safety standards,” said Chip Rogers, president and CEO of the American Hotel & Lodging Association. “As we continuously update our safety protocols to ensure the safest environment, new guidance from the CDC on hotel operations, including daily room cleanings, will meet travelers’ expectations while also helping to further limit contact between employees and guests.”

“The Infectious Diseases Society of America has endorsed the hotel industry’s Safe Stay program because it sets comprehensive health and safety requirements necessary to meet the current public health crisis. With these rigorous standards, the hotel industry plays an important role in helping to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19,” said Barbara Alexander, MD, MHS, FIDSA, president of IDSA.

The new guidance around room cleaning is also in alignment with traveler priorities, as nearly nine out of ten (88%) frequent travelers say that limiting in-room housekeeping to “by request only” would increase their comfort level. This is according to a recent national surveycommissioned by AHLA conducted by Morning Consult. Additionally, nearly three-in-five (58%) guests do not want daily housekeeping; and 58% would not be comfortable with housekeeping staff entering their room without advance permission.


“As the only professional trade organization providing training and guidance to both in-house and contracted hospitality laundry service providers, ALM endorses AHLA’s Safe Stay initiative because it is a comprehensive program rooted in CDC guidelines which will keep hotels clean and employees safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve been proud to work alongside AHLA in their dedication to keeping those who support the hotel industry--who we both represent-- safe and healthy during this challenging time,” said Linda Fairbanks, executive director of the Association for Linen Management.

Dr. Murray Cohen, a certified industrial hygienist and former infectious diseases epidemiologist with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention and World Health Organization (WHO), said the updated AHLA Safe Stay guidelines are comprehensive and reflect the advice of leading health agencies. “Based on my 45 years in public health practice, especially prevention of workplace infection transmission, I have reviewed the hotel industry’s guidelines and they are directly aligned with the public health guidance provided by the CDC for the hotel industry in ensuring the safety of both their workforce and guests,” stated Dr. Cohen. “The Safe Stay program adheres to rigorous hygiene protocols, social distancing and contactless options to further limit unnecessary interaction between employees and guests.”

AHLA also recently released the “
Safe Stay Guest Checklist” for guests on how to travel safely while also creating a standardized safety experience nationwide, which includes several requirements such as the use of face coverings and limiting daily room cleaning. This checklist is part of AHLA’s Safe Stay guidelines, an industry-wide, enhanced set of health and safety protocols designed to provide a safe and clean environment for all hotel guests and employees.


COAST SALISH TERRITORY (Vancouver, BC) –  October 27, 2020 – With the COVID pandemic shifting travel domestically in 2020 and more than likely also for 2021, Indigenous tourism businesses can significantly grow their local Canadian traveller base, according to a study by Insignia Marketing Research.   

The Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (ITAC) commissioned Insignia earlier this year to conduct a study aimed at understanding both the relevance and potential relevance of Indigenous tourism and cultural experiences within the domestic travel market. The survey’s findings show that COVID-19 disruption has created an unprecedented, industry-wide opportunity for Indigenous tourism and cultural experiences.

Conducted in August, the market research noted that COVID has induced travel-related attitudinal and behavioural shifts that have made Indigenous experiences more favourable to the Canadian domestic visitor. The study also determined, however, that Indigenous tourism experiences were not yet top of mind with travellers who were now turning to explore Canada, while international borders remain closed. 

Together, these findings indicate that the ideal time is now to leverage these shifts by supporting and showcasing ITAC and its members. This supports the need to continue rolling out a comprehensive domestic awareness and education campaign - leveraging the launch of Destination Indigenous and this summer’s Escape From Home marketing campaign - as originally outlined in ITAC’s four-year, $50 million Strategic Recovery Plan presented in March.

“Although COVID-19 has been devastating to our Indigenous tourism operators, as it has been for most tourism operators across Canada, it is heartening to know that the demand among local travellers has grown for Indigenous tourism experiences,” says Keith Henry, ITAC’s President and CEO. “In the past, Indigenous tourism has been a huge draw for international visitors but domestically we have been overlooked. COVID-19 has caused a shift in people’s attitudes toward travel; what they are looking for in a destination or experience is more aligned with the authentic, down-to-earth, mindful experiences that our members offer across the country.”

With the report finding that travellers believe that Indigenous experiences can outperform non-Indigenous ones and that they are actively searching for “hidden gems”, the biggest obstacle is that many travellers do not have a clear idea of what Indigenous tourism and cultural experiences are or where/how to find them. These findings will be of great help to ITAC's marketing department shape their upcoming consumer campaign, which will again inspire locals and Canadians to travel and learn about Indigenous people and experiences.

It is in this spirit that ITAC has put forth requests for federal and provincial funding to support the Strategic Recovery Plan to respond, recover and rebuild the Indigenous tourism industry across Canada to levels experienced in 2019 by 2024. “It is critical that the Government of Canada support our full Recovery Plan to be able to train, educate and execute on key items within the research as this will be vital for the survival of our industry,” says Henry. Until then, ITAC will continue to advocate for Indigenous-led solutions and stimulus funding that can save the Indigenous tourism sector from collapse, help it recover and develop resilience against further impacts from COVID-19. 


On Friday, October 30 at 10 a.m. PDT / 1 p.m. EDT, Henry will be hosting an informative webinar presentation on his personal Facebook Live account discussing the latest Insignia Marketing Research findings and diving into the perceptions of Canadians towards Indigenous tourism and the opportunities for the industry. Henry will welcome Lydia Zorn, Co-founder and Partner of Insignia Marketing Research Inc., to present the results. Watch the webinar presentation on Henry’s Facebook Live account here

The Insignia Marketing Research summary can be viewed here; the full report can be viewed here.

To view all of ITAC’s communications around COVID-19 and the resources available, click here.


23 October 2020

“A year-on-year (YOY) RevPAR decline of 53.4% and an occupancy rate down 30% on the previous year highlight how tough Q3 has been for IHG. Despite this, there is reason to be positive as the hotel chain has reported that occupancy improved from 25% to 44% in Q3, signalling a light at the end of the tunnel.

“IHG’s recovery is being driven by domestic tourism. According to GlobalData’s COVID-19 Recovery Consumer Survey (16–20 September), 41% of respondents globally would consider booking a domestic trip this year, compared with only 31% considering booking an international trip. This exhibits the greater demand for domestic tourism and gives hope that the domestic market will help hotel companies navigate this difficult period.   

“The European market was hit particularly hard during Q3, with RevPAR down 72% YOY, as a second coronavirus wave is starting to take grip across the continent. The Chinese market could be crucial for the company in the comings months as the country is showing the best signs of tourism recovery globally, highlighted by an occupancy rate of 57%.

“The coming months will be incredibly challenging for IHG, however, the signs of a slow recovery are beginning to become apparent.”


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