Franklin-based Mars Petcare announced Wednesday a new partnership with Hilton Hotels and Resorts to make two of Hilton’s extended stay brands fully pet-friendly with abnormally broad pet amenities.
The new collaboration is the fruit of Mars Petcare’s Better Cities for Pets program, and the novel ideas thereof will feature in both Homewood Suites by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton throughout the United States and Canada.
Homewood is expected to make its 300 locations entirely pet friendly by Jan. 1, 2022, and Home2 is projected to do the same for its 500 hotels, leaving only about 200 extended-stay locales to become fully pet friendly. In total, the 1,000 pet friendly hotels will offer travelers and their pets 110,000 rooms throughout North America with another 500 hotels and their 55,000 rooms under development.
“We’ve seen first-hand the undeniable bond that pet parents have formed with their pets particularly over the past year,” said Ikdeep Singh, Mars Petcare North America regional president citing data from an online survey administered by KRC Research that found 65 percent of pet parents to be likely to bring pets with them when they travel in 2022.
Nashville, however, is one of five cities scattered across the U.S. to participate in the pilot program to launch these services, which means certain locations in the Greater Nashville area will begin participating early. Other such cities include Dallas, Texas; Jackson, Wyo.; Miami, Fla. and Phoenix, Ariz.
What the McLean, Va.-based hospitality giant calls pet friendly programming will make Mars pet health experts available to patrons who have pets to provide information on not only wellness but also behavioral questions germane to their stay according to a release. Both brands will also introduce consistent pet fees at $50 per stay, which applies to two Cool Springs locations including Home2 Suites at 107 International Drive and Homewood Suites at 2225 East McEwen Drive.
Homewood and Home2 both have all-suite guest rooms in which living and sleeping areas are separate with kitchens included. This creates considerable space for pets and makes them ideal brands for implementing the new program.
Travelers with pets typically have to avail themselves of boutique hotels like Nashville Airport-area Hotel Preston. Hilton’s new offering gives them a plethora of new options.
Pet services are costly amenities for hotels due to the number of customers who want rooms that show no signs of pets having been there. Cleaning processes are rarely fastidious enough to reliably eliminate all trace of pets, so some hotels that offer such amenities designate certain rooms, blocks or floors for pets to ensure that pets only ever end up in the same rooms while travelers without pets never wind up in rooms with any recent pet history.
The Mars, Inc. portfolio includes Pedigree, Nutro and Iams. Hilton’s operates 6,600 properties in 119 countries and territories. Homewood Suites are spread out across North America with 515 locations in Canada, the Caribbean, Mexico and the U.S. Home2 Suites is Hilton’s fastest-growing brand with 500 locations and another 450 under development.