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Hotel helps guests fight jet lag

Travel & Tourism

Back in January we wrote about an effort at the Aéroports de Paris to provide travellers with light-therapy breaks to stave off jet lag during the holiday travel season. At the time we suggested it might be a good idea for hotels to consider offering something similar, so we were gratified when one of our spotters called our attention to a hotel that’s doing just that. Through a partnership between Westin Hotels & Resorts and Philips, guests at The Westin Chicago River North can stay in a specially designed Concept Room aimed at helping guests combat sleep troubles and jet lag. Among the amenities in Westin’s Concept Room are Philips‘ new blue-light ActiViva lamps, which provide phototherapy and help people feel more alert, awake and energized. (In Philips’ field tests, participants reported an increase of 10 percent or more in their performance after using these lamps, the company says.) The room also contains a light therapy box at the work desk station, and guests can further awaken their senses with the eucalyptus shower fizzer in the room’s “Heavenly Shower”–sister amenity to its Heavenly Bed, which we wrote about a few years back. A guided-meditation sleep TV program, a room-service menu filled with calming snacks such as banana-milk smoothies, and Philips’ LED “stumble lights” to keep guests safe when getting out of bed are also on offer. Finally, running maps created in partnership with Runner’s World magazine are designed to encourage guests to go outside for fresh air and exercise. Sue Brush, senior vice president at Westin, explains: “Thanks to our global economy and ease of travel across time zones, jet lag is an increasingly common complaint. A recent Westin study revealed that 55 percent of our guests suffer from sleep deprivation, and more than 900 guests contact our staff each month in search of medical attention. Feedback from the Concept Room will help us in our ongoing mission to bring a sense of renewal and wellness to guests.” Indeed, the Concept Room is being used to test such therapeutic offerings on travellers who have recently crossed two or more time zones, with the goal of helping Westin’s designers introduce wellness-inspired components into the next generation of the brand’s guest rooms. One result so far, for example, is that all newly built Westin Hotels now feature custom blackout shades, which debuted in the Concept Room. Sleep TV, the channel offering guided meditation to lull guests into a deep slumber, will soon be available at most Westin properties in North America. The bar is inching upward for hotels hoping to attract global travellers, and airlines, airports and cruise ships could all benefit from the same example. One to emulate in destinations around the world! Spotted by: Hans Hazes

Website: www.westinchicago.com

Contact: www.westinchicago.com/contact

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