Seeking to clear the air, hotels deploy purifiers in guestrooms

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A Molekule air purifier in an Ocean House Management Collection guestroom.
A Molekule air purifier in an Ocean House Management Collection guestroom.

As research increasingly indicates that airborne transmission of Covid-19 is a threat, improving indoor air quality has become a priority for many hoteliers.

"Air is a big part of the challenge," said infectious diseases specialist and epidemiologist Dr. Ravina Kullar. "If you're indoors, you might be cleaning the surfaces well, but if the virus is still lingering in the air, then that's a problem. A lot of hotel rooms have older air filtration systems that just circulate in and out, so they're having to think about ways to upgrade their air filtration systems."

To this end, AtmosAir Solutions is upgrading HVAC systems in select Hilton, Loews, Kimpton, Doubletree and Gaylord hotels as well as in casinos across the U.S. 

According to Tony Abate, vice president and chief technical officer at AtmosAir, the company's bipolar ionization devices are designed to "saturate the air with ions," and the company says that reduces the presence of airborne coronavirus by 99.92% within 30 minutes.

"When the ion finds a virus, it disturbs the protein surface of the virus," Abate explained. "It actually puts a hole in the virus, and the virus loses its viability."

Earlier this spring, Rhode Island properties Ocean House and Weekapaug Inn, both part of the Ocean House Management Collection, announced that they'd be adding Molekule Air or Molekule Air Mini air purifiers to their 100-plus rooms and suites. Molekule, whose purifiers retail in the $399 to $799 range, claims that its technology can destroy up to 99.99% of SARS-CoV-2 proxy virus concentrations in two hours.

"We knew that a high quality of air in guestrooms would help provide peace of mind for our guests," said Daniel Hostettler, Ocean House Management Collection president and group managing director. 

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