Press Coverage

New Orleans is known for its hospitality, rich cultural heritage, and fortitude in facing natural calamities. 2020 was no different as the city was on the front lines of the COVID-19 battleground.
Chris owns and self-manages about 70 properties in the New Orleans area, including 25 short-term rental properties in Louisiana and some self-storage, industrial, retail, and mixed-use facilities.
Chris saw a way he could be part of the solution.

“These are new times for many. During an ever-changing landscape of emergency response during the COVID 19 pandemic our medics are amazing us daily with their strength and fortitude in the face of increased call volumes, challenging response scenarios, and the ever-present anxiety surrounding everyone during this time. And through all of this, New Orleans is banding together to reach out and support each other and everyone’s efforts during this time. New Orleans EMS – we’ve got you. In addition to this, we have countless people to thank during this time. We’d especially want to mention our new friends below who continue to blow us away. We just want to say thank you.”

A few local hotels, such as The Troubadour and the Higgins Hotel and Conference Center have offered rooms at discounted rates for first responders or their families.
And recently a New Orleans real estate company has started to offer empty rental properties as free places to stay for quarantining first responders.
Real estate developers Chris and Ashley Genard — who operate the Genard Company, which oversees short- and long-term rentals through the couple’s property management firm, Stay Redamo — say they thought their rental units would provide more comfort than a hotel, as guests staying in them can go from room to room and spend time on porches and decks. 
As social distancing measures took effect last month and would-be travelers canceled their visits, the Genards’ short-term rental properties sat empty. Like many of the community relief efforts in the age of the pandemic, the idea sparked through social media.
“One of my employees sent me a post [on Facebook],” Chris says. “It said 28 paramedics possibly need to be quarantined. So I said, I’ll donate [my units].”
After talking with some first responders he knew, Genard says, “I can tell they’ve been going through a lot — they’re on the front line, there’s fear of them going home to give [the virus] to their kids, or spouses — that’s weighing heavily on them. … They need to quarantine from their loved ones, but be in a comfortable atmosphere.” 

Local property owners Chris Genard and Polly Watts are letting EMS staff stay at their vacant rental properties free of charge as some are nervous about spreading the virus to their families. “We are going to get through this,” Watts said. “New Orleans is very strong.” Genard described the conversation he had with one paramedic. “It was a breakdown, an emotional breakdown, for him saying man I didn’t expect this you don’t know how much we are appreciative of this.”

Chris and Ashley Genard, owners of New Orleans short-term rental company Redamo, were all set to have a record spring. NOLA’s festival season was approaching, and their properties had around 85% occupancy scheduled from March through May.
That quickly fell to 0% when the COVID-19 pandemic struck.
“All of a sudden, we were scrambling, going, ‘We have all these vacant properties. What do we do with them?’” Chris said.

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