The Dan Hotel in Jerusalem does not feel the same crunch the rest of the tourism industry has felt in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. The hotel continues to host guests even as many other hotels have closed down.
One common denominator characterizes the hotel's guests: all of them have tested positive for the coronavirus and are in mild condition.
This is because the Dan Hotel has been rented out by the Defense Ministry and the Home Front Command to house coronavirus patients under quarantine.
Major General Gilad Heller, the "Commander of the Hotel" on behalf of the IDF, has assumed command of the operation. "We want the patient to come to the hotel to be calm so that he goes through the event calmly," Heller told Arutz Sheva.
Heller sat inside the hotel room at the entrance to the hotel, briefing his men, reserve soldiers from the Emergency Rescue Unit. "Our job is to provide the most pleasant appropriate, and efficient response for each and every guest, the coronavirus patients who came here."
To date, the hotel has 18 guests, and the entire complex can accommodate a total of 400 patients in 200 rooms. "The first step is a phone call to match expectations," he said. "Even before the guest arrives, we have a long, detailed telephone conversation with him - why are we bringing him here? What does he get, what food allergies does he have, what medications does he take, what skills does he need? Anything that can help during his stay."
Every guest who comes to the hotel comes to the reception desk, receives a key to the room and minutes later receives a call from the Home Front Command personnel to make sure everything is tailored to their needs.
At present, every guest stays in the room alone, but if the hotel fills up, two will be combined in each room. "Guests can walk around in open spaces, hold a prayer quorum if desired and even prepare for the seder night. Here everything can be done and it's fine. The goal is to absorb the patients from the hospitals and their homes here to make it easier for them and the system.''
Home Front Command staff and hotel staff provide service around the clock, answering questions about kashrut, laundry, food, prayer and more. Heller concluded: “Our interface with the hotel is critical and it is important for us to give that feeling that things are as good as they can be. To that end, we have called up the reserves. We maintain our motto that this is life-saving, and we act accordingly."