Tiny Travelers Hero 2002: Barry Sternlicht - My Family Travels

Safe, clean and comfortable cribs give babies and their parents the best night sleep.

Barry Sternlicht, father of three and chairman and CEO of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. manages one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 750 properties in more than 80 countries. He serves on several charity boards including the Juvenile Diabetes International Foundation, Kids in Crisis and the Center for Jewish-Christian Understanding, and belongs to the World Travel & Tourism Council and the Urban Land Institute among others.

But Family Travel Forum honors him this year as the tourism professional who did the most for our Tiny Travelers by replacing more than 2,000 cribs in Starwood’s Sheraton, Westin and Four Points by Sheraton hotels across the United States.

“As a father of young children, I thought hotel cribs looked pretty shabby, weathered, cheap and not very clean,” said Mr. Sternlicht. “Most of the time my wife and I would carry our own crib with us on vacation, or end up putting the kids in bed with us to avoid hotel cribs [because] we often questioned their safety.”

In 2000, the Safe Kids survey confirmed that 82% of hotel and motel cribs and play yards were, indeed, unable to meet current Consumer Product Safety Commission standards. These findings spurred Mr. Sternlicht to action, and the plush Heavenly and Sweet Sleeper cribs are the offspring of his commitment.

According to a Starwood spokesperson, the new cribs feature 4-inch-thick flame retardant mattresses, a reinforced safety latch with special hardware fittings on the cribs’ underside, and custom-designed linens for extra comfort and safety.

“Hotels should be a treat even for our youngest guests,” gushed the proud father Sternlicht, “and we want parents to feel secure knowing their infant is sleeping in a clean, comfortable, safe and luxurious crib.”

For his commitment to child safety and implementation of meaningful services for family travelers, FTF honors Barry Sternlicht this year.

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