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Hotels offer rooms as offices to boost business

New York 

NEW York City hotels, struggling to navigate the pandemic economy, are doing anything they can to drum up business. For the NoMo Soho, that means pitching its rooms to workers stuck at home.

The property is offering rooms with desks, snacks, WiFi and "views of the Manhattan skyline that are sure to upgrade the backdrop of your virtual meetings". The cost for the temporary office starts at US$89 for four hours.

"We are trying to see what's going to be the next demand," said Amir Richulsky, chief executive of Sapir Corp, which owns the hotel. "Office workers need larger space, social distancing - and we are trying to be there ahead of the curve."

The pandemic has battered the New York hotels industry, pushing occupancy rates as low as 15 per cent.

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While some Americans have started taking trips again, particularly to destinations within driving distance of their homes, New York's lodging market relies on corporate travel and international visits.

The prospects of a long recovery have led some owners to consider new uses, BLOOMBERG

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