Sacramento Hotels Get Creative to Survive Corona

Countless businesses have been shattered by the coronavirus pandemic and Gov. Gavin Newsom’s  “stay at home” order  The hotel industry might be hurting most of all.

Travel has come to a complete standstill. Weddings have been postponed or held at private venues. Conferences have been canceled. All this leaves Sacramento’s hotel owners struggling. According to Visit Sacramento, the city’s convention and visitors bureau, this time of year, owners expect properties to be at 85% capacity; now they are seeing occupancy rates as low as 6%.

Sacramento hotels are finding creative ways to fill their empty rooms.

Some hotel owners have found creative solutions to fill their rooms and generate revenue. The Hilton Arden West is offering rooms as temporary office space for workers who are finding it difficult to work from home. The Hampton Inn closed, and the owner moved the guests to a nearby sister property, a Holiday Inn Express. He is rationing limited work hours among the housekeeping staff. The owner of a California Inn in Rancho Cordova is in negotiations with Sacramento County officials to lease the rooms as housing for the homeless.

Thousands of hotel workers have lost their jobs. Before the crisis, the hospitality industry employed more than 10,000 workers in greater Sacramento. John Kehriotis, owner of the Embassy Suites in Old Sacramento, and part-owner of the Sacramento Kings, said he had to let go of three-quarters of the riverfront hotel’s employees. 

New Home of Cambria Solutions Brings in New Workers

The Sacramento based technology firm Cambria Solutions has moved to its new location, at Eighth and K streets, after a transformational renovation. The new building is an innovative and inviting venue, which is being leveraged with potential hires looking to join a fun, driven, and top-notch firm.

Cambria is leveraging its newly renovated office space to attract employees

Cambria is a Latin-Welsh word meaning “the people.” Cambria Solutions is focused on bringing people closer to technology that can revolutionize their life. Recognizing that technology is only as good as what people to do it and with it, Cambria is focused on recruiting, training, and inspiring consumers to work with the most up-to-date solutions for business.

Fashion Forward Sacramento

New York’s Fashion Week is winding down and Sacramento’s style scene is upping its game. The city is filled with clothing spots offering unique fashion finds. Here is a list of just a few local businesses worth checking out.

Sacramento’s trendy fashion businesses have a lot to offer

1st Go 2nd (hand)

The Article Consignment Boutique in East Sacramento is a vintage and consignment store that is a must for any shopping fan. Buying second-hand is not only fun, but it reduces the environmental impact of clothing, saves a lot of money, and creates a style that is unique and authentic.

Know Your Heart

Heart Clothing Boutique is a favored women’s clothing spot, offering a practical and whimsical wardrobe for any occasion. Comfort and style come together seamlessly in this cozy store where the staff is eager to help customers find just the right look.

Go Krazy

Krazy Mary’s, also in East Sacramento, offers up-scale fashion that is forward-thinking and user-friendly. It’s sister store, Sugar Shack Boutique, networks with local artists and designers to curate an affordably unique collection of clothing.

Find an Outlet

Folsom Premium Outlets has more than 80 different outlet stores. With something for everyone, this is the perfect place to go for shoppers only looking to park once. There are also a few cafes and shake shops on the campus perfect for an energy boost during shopping sprees.

Sacramento’s Salvation Army Celebrated

The Sacramento Salvation Army received the city’s highest honor, induction to the Centennial Hall of Fame, at the 125th Annual Dinner and Business Awards. Held on February 1, 2020, hundreds of community leaders, business owners and stakeholders, and people of import gathered to recognize the nonprofit’s work to curb homelessness and poverty in the Sacramento area for over 130 years.

Sacramento’s Salvation Army honored by the city

Sacramento: Keeping Local Employees Safe

One of the most important components in a job is safety.  Not job security per se (although obviously that is a factor) but being able to go to one’s job every day and feel safe.

Unfortunately, in the hospitality industry that has often been lacking, especially for those dealing with hotel guests.  it is hard to offer protection to employees cleaning rooms.  until now hotel owners have hoped that guests would behave with respect and kindness and left it at that.  But that is not enough to prevent hotel guests assaulting or harassing staff as they clean their rooms.

According to local organization United Here Local 49 President’s Chris Rak:

“Too many housekeepers have to worry every day about inappropriate guest behavior that could be lurking behind any hotel room door. We’re glad the city of Sacramento is taking steps to make these jobs safer.”  

Thankfully in the new year, there may be a solution for that for those in Sacramento since an ordinance has been approved by the Sacramento City Council Committee to require hotels to have panic buttons.  According to retired architect and frequent traveler Moshe Victor Keinig, this is definitely a great first step.

“I’ve seen so many types of people check in and out of all sorts of hotels and I’ve often wondered how staff are being treated behind the scenes by these individuals.  Giving them a mobile panic button is a great idea.”

Another retired frequent flyer, Victoria Vans-Queys, who often comes to Sacramento to see her mum re-iterated this point. She said:

“Since you can’t vet the people visiting your hotel there simply has to be some kind of protection for staff members.  I’m shocked that they have been left unprotected for so long and am just glad that at least the Sacramento City Council is starting to take action.”

Hopefully this action will have a significant impact and will result in all employees feeling safe to attend their jobs each day.

New Innovation Coming to Sacramento

The City of Sacramento announced a partnership with Berkeley SkyDeck, the startup accelerator program from the University of California (“UC”) Berkeley. Through this cooperation, SkyDeck will introduce seven startup companies to Sacramento to pursue investment and advancement opportunities.

SkyDeck accelerator to work with City of Sacramento

SkyDeck will work with the Sacramento Urban Technology Lab (SUTL) to navigate the city’s business landscape, aiming to establish new, local, high-paying jobs.

When SUTL launched in 2018, it focused on developing, piloting, and growing technology in the city environment. According to the agreement, Berkeley SkyDeck will refer program alumni to the city at no cost. All of the founders of SkyDeck are alumni of one of the UC campuses. Startups accepted to the program go through a rigorous screening process.

Sacramento Welcomes Odd Cookie

Downtown Sacramento is now home to a new – and eccentric – bakery.

Odd Cookie Bakery Cafe and Bar has moved into the old home of the Bar Rouse on 9th Street near J Street. An opening is set for mid-December.

cupcakes topped with crispy bacon

The locally owned business will offer unexpected food and drink combinations: cupcakes topped with fried chicken, deep-fried calzones, sweet and spicy cocktails, and so much more. Traditional treats will also be available for less adventurous eaters. Yum!

Sacramento Incubator Calling for Businesses to Join Spring Accelerator

The CoWo Sacramento Campus is looking for companies to apply to be part of its spring accelerator, offering a $10,000 first place price to the most deserving company.

The accelerator will have a limit of 15 companies. They will participate in a 10-week series of courses to prepare them for investment so they can scale into larger firms. Founder of the CoWo Campus, Kuks Singh, explained:

“We are open to any feasible business idea that is working and making money,” he said.

He added that the accelerator will also help the businesses find ways to grow successfully and quickly. All kinds of companies are welcome to join, including fashion, art, technology, food and beverage. Singh said, “It’s kind of cool to see what everyone is doing.”

Cash prizes of $10,000, $7,500 and $2,500 will go to the first, second and third place businesses. The final pitch by each business will be made in front of an audience composed of possible investors in June.

Interested businesses have until January 31 to sign up. The participating firms will be picked in February, and the accelerator will begin in March.

Raley’s Closing Many In-House Pharmacies

November 5 is the deadline to close about 30% of Raley’s in-store pharmacies. The grocery chain, based in West Sacramento, said the closures are permanent, and will begin on October 26. The store added that about 100 employees will be affected by this move, providing transfers to other Raley’s locations and transition support when needed.

“This was a proactive decision so we can avoid bleeding and long-term challenges to those stores,” said Chelsea Minor, a spokeswoman for the company. “We remain committed to operating at those 69 locations.”

Minor said the pharmacies were facing pressure from “industry consolidation, low reimbursements and high operating costs.” In addition, high drug prices and low Medicare and Medi-Cal reimbursements and private health insurers made it extremely hard to stay competitive and turn a profit.

People with prescriptions in the Raley’s pharmacies affected by the closures will have them transferred to Walgreens, CVS Pharmacy and Rite Aid nearby. Out of the 27 pharmacies scheduled to close, about 15 will be either next door to, or across the street from, one of those stores.

Sacramento’s Best Farmers Markets

October 12, 2019 was National Farmers’ Day across the U.S. It was a day to honor all farmers and pay tribute to great agriculturalists of the past.

Farming contributed $132.8 billion to the U.S. economy in the previous year, according to Business Insider, and according to the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) one American farm feeds 166 people annually. So farming is definitely something worth celebrating.

Fresh produce and great prices at Farmers’ Markets

Sacramento boasts some of the greatest Farmers Markets including: Sunday Farmers’ Market, Midtown Farmers Market, Davis Farmers Market, Farmers’ Market Thursday, and Oak Park Farmers Market.

Besides the fun of a Farmers Market, filled with glorious colors and friendly people, there are many additional benefits to buying from farmers. You will get the freshest seasonal ingredients; produce purchased from a farmer is always fresher and usually organic. When buying directly from Sacramento local farmers, you are contributing to the local community and economy. Your money goes directly to people living in Sacramento and ensures that local businesses continue to thrive. Shopping locally also means that the environmental costs of the products you consume is greatly reduced. The produce doesn’t have to travel to get to you and you aren’t paying too much in gas to get there. The best products to buy from farmers are: eggs, milk, honey, jams, fruit, vegetables, cheese, flowers, grains, and organic soaps.