The Wyndham Hotels & Resorts chain has made history by being the second hotel in the United States to install autism-friendly rooms.
Two months ago, the Wyndham Garden Hotel in Austin, Texas, made their five new autism-friendly open for reservation. Tony Sahyoun, the hotel’s general manager, said that the idea was sparked after he had met with officials from a local autism research center. The conversation that they had opened Sahyoun’s eyes to the special needs traveling community and how they require additional assistance to have comforting stays. Sahyoun, sales manager Anna Roberts, and the local autism research center began working on a design plan shortly after. Sahyoun said that his staff was ecstatic about the idea when he first proposed it to them, since many of his staff members had friends or relatives who were autistic.
The five rooms all have door alarms, so parents don’t need to worry about their child wandering off. They also placed cushions on the corners of tables, put locks on the drawers, and made the strings on the blinds shorter so the children can’t endanger themselves. Lastly, the rooms have outlet covers on all power outlets, and each room has a set of toys and books to help make the children feel at home.
However, in order to fully cater to the special needs community, Sahyoun revamped both the rooms and the restaurant options that the hotel offers. The restaurant at the Wyndham Garden Hotel now has special menu options for children who may have diet restrictions or be on a particular diet.
The autism-friendly rooms available at the Wyndham Garden Hotel have hosted 48 visits so far. We, at the International Center for Autism Research and Education, say thank you to this autism-friendly hotel chain.