Hurricane Harvey left many people scrambling for comfort, but The Westin Houston, Memorial City, and SpringHill Suites by Marriott Houston Intercontinental Airport stepped up and helped those in need. Below is an account of how both properties accommodated so many people who needed a hand.
The Westin Houston, Memorial City
The Westin Houston, Memorial City, has provided a home to many affected by Hurricane Harvey—families who have evacuated their homes, expectant mothers needing to be near a hospital, out-of-towners, and hotel and hospital employees. It has, without a doubt, been a tough time for Houston.
Especially for the children. Seeing an opportunity to provide a bit of fun for the children, General Manager Kerry Ringham and his team converted their 024 Lounge into a kid-friendly space. They set up teepees from their indoor camping package and the front office director picked up movies (e.g., Moana, Boss Baby, Beauty and the Beast), candy, and some kid-friendly activities from the local Target to complete the experience. It was a great way for parents to unwind and let kids release some of their bottled-up energy from being cooped up in their rooms for almost a week.
Said Kerry Ringham, “After being in a hotel room for several days, many guests began to develop cabin fever and needed a place to escape. We wanted to create a way to not only take care of our guests, but to entertain them in a creative way as well.”
But it wasn’t just the children who needed a change of scenery. Employees of the Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center were also restless, having been sleeping in hospital rooms for several days. Partnering with the hospital, the hotel placed pre-function furniture in their Wisteria Ballroom, along with a TV, to create a lounge and resting area for doctors, nurses, and other hospital employees.
Police Disaster Command Center
And the hotel didn’t forget about the local police! The hotel also provided police personnel with space to set up a command center. This was a great resource for the police. Four officers have even taken up temporary residence at the property as well!
SpringHill Suites by Marriott Houston Intercontinental Airport
The SpringHill Suites by Marriott Houston Intercontinental Airport also came through in a big way for local first responders. With the rescue efforts running on a non-stop schedule, first responders needed a place to rest and the hotel was more than happy to accommodate them.
The hotel converted their lobby into a rest area so personnel could take a break as well as recharge their batteries, phones, and equipment. It was a big help; something small that made a big difference.
So many people (e.g., police, first responders, nurses, doctors, volunteers) have been selfless during this difficult time, so it’s great to see properties paying it forward.