Many hotels listed on FreshStay.com®
are finding success by going beyond providing smoke-free environments and
offering guestrooms, meeting rooms and public spaces with Indoor Air Quality
SAINT CHARLES, MISSOURI — OCT. 3, 2007 — You never have a second chance to make a first impression. The first impression many guests have of their hotel choices is how the properties smell ? because “the nose knows,” and it enters properties first every time! Whether it’s smoky or stagnant, a foul air impression sets the tone for an uncomfortable stay, and 0 repeat business/referrals.
That’s why many hotels listed on FreshStay® are working to make sure their guests’ first impressions are fresh ones. FreshStay (www.FreshStay.com) is an online directory and integrated booking process for more than 3,500 non-smoking lodging facilities in the United States, Canada and around the world. FreshStay is dedicated to promoting the improvement of Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) for “Frequent Breathers” worldwide who seek fresh air accommodations at resorts, hotels, motels, inns and B&Bs.
“Though being 100-percent smoke-free is a great and necessary place to start, there’s so much more that a hotel can do to improve its Indoor Air Quality, and consequently, the satisfaction of its guests,” says Ray Burger, President of Pineapple Hospitality, which founded and operates FreshStay. “Guests are looking for rooms with Indoor Air Quality improvements for the same reasons they choose non-smoking rooms and hotels. The rooms feel cleaner, healthier, safer for allergy sufferers and, quite simply, they can sleep better and feel more refreshed the next morning.”
From “Ick” to WOW”
Guests are noticing a change in the air at the Annapolis Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Maryland. The hotel is offering guestrooms and meeting rooms with air that has been treated to remove allergens.
By all accounts, the program has been a smashing success.
Tom Kammerer, Managing Director for Thayer Lodging, a private hotel real-estate investment firm in Annapolis, Md., that runs the Annapolis Marriott, said that a four-month trial to purify rooms at the hotel was so successful, Thayer is converting about 10 percent of the rooms at each of its 13 hotels into PURE Rooms by the end of this year.
Kammerer says there was an 180-percent return on investment on the 10 rooms of the 150-room hotel that were converted to PURE Rooms. And the PURE Rooms are running at full occupancy, even with a 5-percent to 10-percent premium for the service.
‘‘There is a lot of repeat business for PURE Rooms,” Kammerer said. ‘‘People love them.”
The growing trend toward PURE Rooms is partially for allergy sufferers, but it is also for anyone who wants clean, comfortable stays without having to think about the guests (and pets in some cases) who may have stayed there before them.
“We call it the ‘ick factor,’” says Kammerer. “The whole thing is geared toward ‘What about the guy before me?’ That’s why we have encasements over our pillows and mattresses. The natural human body sheds 150,000 cells a day. We’re trying to cut down on breathing in other people’s stuff.
“Being clean and smoke-free isn’t necessarily enough to separate yourself in the marketplace anymore. We kind of expect those things now,” Kammerer says. “We’re looking for things in our hotels that are extraordinary. We’re going from the ‘ick factor’ to the ‘wow factor.’”
Thayer’s hotels soon also will offer rooms with steam showers, aromatherapy and ‘‘chromo,” or light, therapy. Rooms also will have free spa minibars, with samples of organic body and skin products. “This is cutting edge now,” Kammerer says, ‘‘but it will become the standard shortly. People will come to expect this too.”
The PURE Process
The PURE feeling at the Annapolis Marriott and many other lodging facilities is come from PURE Solutions, NA.
PURE Solutions’ PURE Process:
According to a Cornell University Survey Research
Institute study, 31 percent of the travelers
That is nearly one in three people checking into a hotel.
“Improved Air Quality greatly increases the likelihood that guests will wake up refreshed, without being congested or having scratchy, puffy eyes,” adds Brault. “With PURE Rooms, the purifiers used are registered by the FDA as Class II medical devices. This means that between 98-100% of bacteria and viruses have been eliminated from the air.”
Similarly, the Cornell survey found that 83 percent
of travelers prefer to stay in properties treated to
“We receive quite a bit of feedback that guests love the rooms and ask for their guest profiles to reflect their preference for PURE Rooms,” says Brault. “One guest, Tim Daggit, indicated that a night’s stay in an Annapolis Marriott PURE Room was ‘great,’ and that he ‘didn’t have any of the normal allergy symptoms that he usually battles.’ He was happy to pay the $20 premium, and said ‘frankly, I would have paid more.’ From a business perspective, we have several hotels that are making quite a bit of money with the PURE Rooms by charging a premium.”
Another PURE success comes from the Seaport Hotel in Boston which has been smoke-free since it opened in 1998.
Director of Rooms Matt Moore says, “We believed from the onset that providing a smoke free environment would appeal to a number of travelers and provide us with an advantage over our competitive set. In hindsight, we were correct in our assumption that we could improve our Indoor Air Quality without alienating our guests. This non-smoking policy has been further validated as many of the national chain hotels have followed our lead and are now 100% smoke free.”
In 2007, the Seaport went one step further and added four PURE Allergy-Friendly Rooms as an option for guests who suffer from allergies or respiratory problems. The Seaport was the second hotel in Massachusetts to offer this type of amenity.
“It’s been great,” Moore says. “We don’t field guest complaints regarding smoky rooms. We receive praise from first-time guests for keeping a smoke-free property. The introduction of the PURE Allergy-Friendly Rooms also has been well received. The program will only become more popular as more guests realize thanks to FreshStay.com that they have more options and begin to choose hotels based on a variety of amenities like 100-percent smoke free environments and allergy-friendly rooms.”
Moore says he is glad there are resources like FreshStay.com to reach out to travelers who increasingly prefer to stay in cleaner, fresh, non-smoking hotels, and that have taken additional steps to protect guests’ and employees’ health by investing in Indoor Air Quality upgrades.
“FreshStay.com allows us to reach a broader audience
than we could reach as an independent hotel,” Moore says. “I believe they
will continue to be used as a worldwide reference for Indoor Air Quality
About Pineapple Hospitality
Headquartered in Saint Charles, Missouri, Pineapple Hospitality™ is an EPA ENERGY STAR™ partner bringing fresh ideas to hospitality guests’ doors and owner/operators’ bottom lines — including FreshStay® (www.freshstay.com), EcoRooms & EcoSuites (www.EcoRooms.com)
Environmentally Sensitive Amenities™, the greenSPA™ luxury amenity and dispenser system, Custom Linen and Towel Re-Use Programs, Guestat™ programmable thermostats, high-performance energy- and water-efficient showerheads, the Nature’s Mist™ deodorization system, and dozens of other products and programs. To get a taste of Pineapple’s sweet planet-friendly solutions helping thousands of hotels bolster business and cut costs, please visit www.pineapplehospitality.net, or call Ray Burger at 636-922-2285.
FreshStay® is a registered trademark of Pineapple
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|200 Smoke Free Hotels Join the www.freshstay.com Online Directory in 1st Month / March 2006|
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|Fresh Air: The New Hospitality Amenity; Pineapple Hospitality Launches FreshStay™, an Online Directory of Hotels Offering Better Indoor Air Quality / January 2006|
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|Pineapple Hospitality is Now the Exclusive U.S. Supplier of Environmentally Sensitive Amenities™ / November 2005|
|Got Pineapple? Hotelier-turned-industry-innovator Ray Burger Launches Pineapple Hospitality™ — bringing fresh ideas and business-building products and programs to your guests’ doors and your bottom line / September 2005|