Instead of home, why not work and learn from luxury hotels, vacation homes

Six months into working and learning from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some families are taking advantage of the opportunity to tweak the “H” in WFH to “hotel.”

With vacation travel decimated by the coronavirus, luxury hotels have been limping along with only 25% occupancy, says CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg.

“They needed to pivot, and figure out a market that was never there before. That market is people literally moving to hotels and resorts, staying in suites with their entire families, working there, living there and learning there.”

Greenberg said with hotels offering rates of about $120 per night, an extended stay in a city besides “your hometown” is both enjoyable and financially viable.

“You’re not in your car, you’re not commuting, you’re not spending money dining out,” Greenberg said. “It can make it financially worthwhile, in the short term, or at least for maybe four or five months at a time.”

Another option: spending a week or two in a luxury rental home.

“Marriott is very quietly managing a portfolio of 10,000 vacation homes, much like Airbnb,” Greenberg said. “We’re talking about homes in Cape Cod, on the rivers and lakes, like Keystone, Colorado — beautiful locations.”

Greenberg said those luxury vacation homes start under $250 per night for a home that will sleep up to 10 people.

“A lot of families are getting together with other families, and two families at a time are moving to these homes, and living there, working there and learning there. If you average out the actual costs, it’s about $20 a night per person, which you couldn’t afford to do if you were staying home.”

A home away from home — and avoiding close contact with strangers — fits well with public health guidance.

“You have all the social distancing you need, you have your wireless, and you have your basic social responsibility and medical protocols in place,” Greenberg said. “So, it becomes a viable alternative.”

“As long as the schools are not really opening en masse, and kids are learning remotely, it becomes a win-win for everybody,” Greenberg said.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a reporter at WTOP since 1997. Through the years, Neal has covered many of the crimes and trials that have gripped the region. Neal's been pleased to receive awards over the years for hard news, feature reporting, use of sound and sports.

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