Travelodge Targets Families With New Room Concept

Reed Travel Features

LAKE BUENA VISTA -- Sleepy Bear's Den, Travelodge Hotels' new guest room concept for families, was launched at the 325-room Travelodge Hotel at Walt Disney World Village.

The room, which incorporates the chain's Sleepy Bear mascot as a theme, is being tested in 12 North American cities.

Once the test is completed, or by May, Travelodge expects to extend the program to its 470 properties, but hotels in resort areas are likely to be the major participants.

Participating hotels would convert up to 5% of their inventory to Sleepy Bear's Dens under the program. The rooms' modular design makes reconversion to a standard room during off-peak periods easier, the chain's Parsippany, N.J.-based corporate office said.

Two guest rooms at the Lake Buena Vista property now feature a Sleepy Bear theme, with special bedspreads, curtains and a custom-designed children's chair.

Other characteristics entail an in-room videocassette recorder with a library of children's videos available at the property's front desk; a small refrigerator; Sleepy Bear posters; Sleepy Bear drinking cups, and a free Sleepy Bear plush toy (a $5 value) for children to take home.

"The Sleepy Bear's Den truly sets us apart from the competition," Robert Zapletal, Travelodge's president and chief operating officer, said during ceremonies here.

The Sleepy Bear's rooms at the Lake Buena Vista hotel are priced from $119 a night, double, through April 7, and $119, Dec. 21 to 31; $109, from April 8 to June 14; $119, June 15 to Aug. 25; $109, Aug. 26 to Dec. 20.

Other properties participating in the test are in San Diego; Los Angeles; Monterey and Anaheim, Calif.; Seattle; San Antonio; Toronto; Edmonton, Alberta; Cambridge, Ohio, and Ogden, Utah.

For additional information or to make reservations, call (800) 578-7878.

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