In guidance issued yesterday (24 March) it says all businesses providing holiday accommodation should ‘take steps to close for commercial use as quickly as is safely possible’.
Bars and restaurants within hotels were already told to shut on Friday when the Government ordered a lockdown of many hospitality businesses.
Hotels can remain open if they are supporting key workers or vulnerable groups, providing emergency accommodation to the homeless, or are acting as the primary residence for families without a permanent residence.
Guests who live overseas and are unable to return home are also permitted to stay.
In these cases hotels will still be able to serve food subject to social distancing guidelines, such as offering meals to ‘grab and go’ or room service.
UKHospitality advises hotels encourage guests not in key specified groups to leave as soon as possible.
A number of hotels including The Grand in Brighton and GG Hospitality’s Stock Exchange Hotel and Hotel Football in Manchester have already closed to the public but are offering free stays to NHS workers.
Intercontinental Hotel Group (IHG), which owns brands including Hotel Indigo and Holiday Inn, announced yesterday it was waiving cancellation fees for new and existing bookings.
Premier Inn says it has shut its sites 'for a minimum of three weeks' and is also providing a full refund to guests.