NEW YORK—American Express (NYSE:AXP) and Hilton (NYSE:HLT) recently partnered together to donate up to 1 million hotel room nights to medical professionals on the frontlines fighting COVID-19. Since April, hundreds of thousands of room nights have been booked. Now, the two companies are extending this important work through a $1 million contribution from American Express to José Andrés’ World Central Kitchen (WCK), to provide healthy, freshly prepared meals to the frontline healthcare professionals who are staying at participating Hilton properties in cities across the United States during the coronavirus pandemic.
World Central Kitchen began this free meal program at select Hilton properties in Los Angeles in April and is now expanding to New York and Washington, D.C., with additional cities under consideration. Healthcare workers staying at participating Hilton properties as part of the free room program are able to pick up meals delivered daily to the hotels. The donation made to World Central Kitchen as part of this effort will enable the organization to cover both the price of the ingredients and the wages for the restaurant employees who may have previously been out of work.
Across the country, local restaurants have also been significantly impacted by COVID-19, with many having to close their doors and reduce operations and staff. In line with its mission to use the power of food to heal and strengthen communities, World Central Kitchen, in partnership with American Express and Resy, is integrating local restaurants into its existing model, allowing the restaurants to hire back some workers to prepare the meals for the medical professionals staying at Hilton properties as part of this program. Some participating American Express and Resy partners include Jon & Vinny’s, Osteria Mozza, Angler, Legacy Records, ATLA, Café Altro Paradiso and Estadio.
The donation to World Central Kitchen will provide a fresh meal, delivered daily, to healthcare professionals, while helping to support the restaurants and their employees.