July 21, 2011 -- Sensitive sleepers and married couples may have a better shot at happiness -- at least when they're traveling -- now that Crowne Plaza hotels has introduced so-called "snore patrols" and "snore absorption rooms" in select locations.
At six British Hotels implementing the snore patrols, employees called "snore monitors" walk the hallways in designated quiet zones, listening for excessive noise. Noisemakers get a knock on the door and are asked to quiet down.
If the problem persists, repeat offenders may be directed to rooms away from the quiet zone for future stays.
The quiet zones are located on two floors in each hotel, in areas away from elevators and stairwells. The monitors are armed with volume measuring meters and trained ears. Some have reported snores exceeding 100 decibels, which is equivalent to the sound of a jet taking off from 1,000 feet away.
Crowne Plaza spokesman Ryan Jones said hotels in other regions may implement it as more feedback and information is collected.
"I think it's a bit of a reassurance for a calm, quiet night without interruption from other guests," Jones said.
Guests have responded positively, he said, and they're particularly popular with business travelers and families.
"We've all been there. Lying wide awake at three o'clock in the morning burying our head under a pillow to drown out our partner's snoring," said Tow Rowntree, spokesman for the Crowne Plaza in a statement. "There's nothing worse than being kept up all night and that's why we've designed this specific snore absorption room to help give our guests a great night's sleep."
Separately, the snore absorption rooms have been implemented in 10 hotels in the Middle East and Europe, including in Spain, Portugal, Britain and France. The rooms feature sound-proof walls, a specially-designed headboard, an anti-snoring pillow, a white noise machine and a wedge-shaped body pillow that helps guests sleep on their sides or upright to minimize snoring -- all in an attempt to ensure a peaceful, silent night of sleep..
The hi-tech rooms were extremely popular with guests throughout the initial trial period, the company said. "The room was fully booked throughout the trial week in many of the participating hotels across Europe. Some markets have even extended the service due to demand," said Caroline Counihan, a spokeswoman for the InterContinental Hotel Group.
Almost 50 percent of Americans who suffer from sleep problems say that snoring is an issue, according to the Center for Disease Control, so it may just be a matter of time before these attempts to control snoring make it stateside.