Southwest Florida hotels staying ahead of supply chain issues

Reporter: Emma Heaton Writer: Joey Pellegrino
Published: Updated:
Hotel room. Credit: WINK News

Your holiday travel plans may fall victim to supply chain disruptions, as hotels across the country can’t keep things in stock. But the impact is barely noticeable at some Southwest Florida hotels that have stayed on top of ordering necessary items well in advance.

The Pink Shell Beach Resort & Marina, located at 275 Estero Blvd. in Fort Myers Beach, typically orders the wristbands to which it attaches keys 30 days in advance; it now has to order 120 days ahead of time.

According to an article from the American Hotel and Lodging Association, 86% of hotels say supply chain issues are impacting their operations. There are a variety of items hotels must constantly order on time or they’ll run short—imagine not having shampoo, conditioner, or even straws and cups during your next hotel stay. These are just a few examples of what might be missing if owners don’t stay ahead of shipments.

Melissa Schneider, marketing director of the Lani Kai Bay Inn at 1400 Estero Blvd. in Fort Myers Beach, says supply issues have been a struggle, but her team has been able to stay on top of it.

“Just being prepared… we’ve been very fortunate, our team has been so good at, like, staying on top of our inventory and making sure that we’ve always got that particular inventory in stock, whether it’s what we normally carry or whether it’s a new version of that based on what we’re able to obtain at that time,” Schneider said. “I feel like we’re surfing, you know, in this pandemic, it’s just… you got to take the waves and stay on top of the board.”

Schneider says this is the unfortunate reality most businesses have to deal with, but rather than getting upset, she’s optimistically rolling with change. While it’s a change using different brands, she’s glad they’re able to continue providing guests with items they need and love.

“They’re having a lot of different products we’ve just, again, had to adapt with,” Schneider said. “So, for instance, instead of getting customized little bottles of shampoo and lotions now, our distributor, they’ve got a bunch of surplus of just random lotions and shampoos that they’ve been providing. Instead of customizing our products, which is fine. Cups, we just had to… we weren’t able to get our normal cups that we get, so we had to turn in and get different cups. I mean, we go through these things like water.”

The general manager of the Pink Shell says that resort has also been forced to become more resourceful, ordering things earlier than usual and from other suppliers.

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