In response to hotel owners’ request for a fresh start following major renovations, TripAdvisor added a review removal policy last October, and updated the policy for clarity in July 2013. The odds are big for hotels: In exchange for proof of major renovations, a hotel’s old reviews are wiped clean - a fresh start.
Hotels must produce proof of structural changes including the installation of new guest rooms or bathrooms, alterations to hotel layout, or complete property overhauls. Cosmetic changes like new paint or curtains do not count.
According to TripAdvisor’s Help Center, hotels need to provide building permits, materials invoices, or press releases to prove that the renovations were indeed structural and completed.
All old reviews are then deleted from the live site and cannot be accessed by travelers or hoteliers. Any removed reviews are no longer factored into the hotel’s Popularity Index.
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