Castaneda Hotel Offers Creative Covid-19 Safety Solution

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Installing a creative safety partition in the Castaneda Hotel

The Covid-19 pandemic has certainly taken its toll on the travel and hospitality industry. For the most part leisure travel has been discouraged, and in some cases even prohibited for the past two months. And let’s face it, even if it were permitted, I expect there would have been a high vacancy rate. But now that some counties are beginning to open up, hoteliers are tasked with yet another hurdle — they must create policies and procedures to keep both their guests and their employees safe. Continue reading

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Does Filing an ADA Complaint Really Work?

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onaeg news agency [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)]I get a lot of e-mails about access failures, and unfortunately in this day and age these things still happen. Why? Well part of the reason is that even though we have access laws on the books, we don’t have any entity that goes around and inspects facilities for compliance. And even if we did, there are some things – like providing reasonable accommodations – that you really can’t inspect. Continue reading

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Buyer Beware – Not All “National Park” Lodges are Equal

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As a writer who has spent the last 20-some years visiting and writing about wheelchair access in our US national parks, (and just released a book about accessible national park lodges — www.BFNationalParkLodges.com), I’ve seen a lot of changes in the parks over the years. Some of the changes are due to the availability of new technology and equipment, but the bulk of them have been spurred on by increased visitation to these national treasures. Continue reading

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What Exactly is an Accessible Hotel Room?

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Part of a gigantic bathroom in an accessible cabin in remote Mineral King

What exactly are the ingredients of an accessible hotel room? That’s a question that I get asked a lot – from both travelers and people in the hospitality industry. And to be honest, there’s not one simple answer to that question. Continue reading

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In Case of Fire

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Emergency evacuation instructions in the right place — at wheelchair height.

Imagine the following scenario. It’s the middle of the night and you are sound asleep. Then you hear a loud noise – a fire alarm. You jump to attention and sit up in bed, and then you realize that you are not at home. You are in a hotel. You think you are on the second floor but you are not sure – you’ve been on the road for a week and all the rooms kind of meld together.

Oh yes, did I also mention that you are in a wheelchair and traveling alone? Continue reading

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Is This Really an Accessible Room?

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A low-step shower in a standard — not accessible — hotel room

Thanks to modern technology it’s now possible to share your travel photos with friends and family with just a few swipes and a tap or two. And I absolutely love seeing those smiling faces enjoying cruises, beaches and  luxury resorts. But lately I’ve also been seeing another kind of travel post – it usually features a photo of an obviously inaccessible room, with the caption “Really? This is an accessible room?”

And the truth is, well, maybe it isn’t. Continue reading

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Looking for a Hotel with a Ceiling Track Lift?

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Finding an accessible hotel room can sometimes be a chore, but imagine trying to find one with a ceiling track lift. Now if you live in the US you may be surprised to learn that such accommodations exist; however they are more common over in the UK. And that’s because of CHuC – the Ceiling Hoist Users Club. Thanks to their advocacy they have encouraged many properties to install ceiling track lifts. And they created a website that lists them all at www.chuc.org.uk.

This handy resource lists properties by location, and includes useful details – like if you need to provide your own sling – about the listing. The bulk of the hotels, self catering properties and B&Bs are located in the UK, but there are also a few in the US, Mexico, Australia and Continental Europe. There’s also a spot for visitors to leave comments or reviews about the listed properties.

Sadly the founder of this site passed away in 2008, but thankfully her works lives on today. So check out this site if you’d like to stay in a property with a ceiling track lift – especially if your travels will take you to the UK.

 

 

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Grand Canyon Maswik Lodge Renovation Project Breaks Ground

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Great news – Xanterra broke ground this month on their massive $30 million renovation project at Maswik Lodge in the Grand Canyon. They will totally demolish and replace the five buildings that comprise Maswik South, and repair and replace the infrastructure around them. Continue reading

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No Accessible Room at the Inn? Tell the DOJ!

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s-l640I’ve been getting a fair share of mail from travelers who booked an accessible room at a US hotel, but then arrived to find that the room had been given to another guest. Basically the all ask me “How can we get hotels to actually save the accessible rooms for people who need them?” Continue reading

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Deal Directly with National Park Concessionaires for Best Access

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Lake Yellowstone Hotel

Lake Yellowstone Hotel

Researching national park access can be tedious, especially where lodging is concerned. National park lodges are operated by concessionaires, who operate under strict guidelines, and are responsible for the repair, improvement and daily operation of the facilities. Continue reading

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