Sunday, February 25, 2007

Hotel chain goes smoke-free

SILVER SPRING, MD.—Choice Hotels International has announced that its 433 Comfort Suites hotels in the United States will go 100 percent nonsmoking as of May 1. The 433 properties represent 34,000 rooms. According to Kimberly Shells, Senior Director, Brand Strategy for Choice, the decision to go smoke free was driven by research.

“We conducted research among guests and franchisees,” Shells says. “The vast majority of them supported it. It really is for our guests. We found that the vast majority of guests prefer a smoke-free environment.”

Ten percent of U.S. Comfort Suites hotels already are 100 percent nonsmoking. The other properties will transition to that status by the end of April.

“We are extremely excited about this opportunity to increase guest satisfaction,” Shells says. “It is an opportunity to differentiate ourselves and attract new guests to the brand.” Source.

The move follows similar decisions by Westin and Marriott. Source.

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