VISIT FLORIDA Coordinates Lodging for Florida NICU Families Displaced After the Storm
Throughout the state’s response to Hurricane Ian, VISIT FLORIDA has worked closely with authorities and travel brands, such as Expedia, AirBnb and hoteliers throughout the state, to connect displaced Floridians with resources for finding suitable short- and long-term accommodations.
Earlier this week, VISIT FLORIDA learned of 23 families, who evacuated from their homes in Lee County while their newborns were in NICU care, were urgently in need of temporary housing in Broward County as their infants were being transferred to nearby hospitals. Thanks to the Broward hospitality industry, VISIT FLORIDA was able to secure accommodations for every single family in need of assistance.
The donated rooms, spanning across 19 hotels in Broward County, will be provided to the families free of charge while their babies receive life-saving medical care from Broward Health, Joe Dimaggio, Memorial Miromar, and Memorial West Hospital.
Hotels donating rooms include:
Conrad Fort Lauderdale Beach
Diplomat Beach Resort
Embassy Suites Fort Lauderdale 17th Street
Four Seasons Ft. Lauderdale
Fort Lauderdale Marriott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa
Hilton Garden Ft. Lauderdale Airport
Hollywood Beach Marriott Hotel
Maren Curio Collection by Hilton
Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort
Marriott Ft. Lauderdale Airport
Renaissance Fort Lauderdale West - Plantation
Ritz-Carlton, Fort Lauderdale Riverside Hotel
Sonesta Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort
The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort
The Pelican Grand
W Fort Lauderdale
“We are humbled to be able to help Floridians recover from the devastating impact of Hurricane Ian,” said Dana Young, VISIT FLORIDA President and CEO. “This incredible act of generosity from our hotel partners ensures that some of Florida’s most vulnerable residents are still able to get critical medical care despite being displaced by the storm. We sincerely thank these hotels for their donations to Florida’s NICU families and making such a positive impact on our state.”
"When Dana Young contacted us to help these Southwest Florida families in need, the answer was an immediate "YES" and we mobilized,” said Heiko Dobrikow, The Las Olas Company / Riverside Hotel, EVP / GM said. “Within less than 12 hours, the Broward County Hoteliers committed to take care of our fellow residents and provide a small sense of peace during their difficult times."
Businesses Supporting The Sunshine State
There has also been an outpouring of support from private sector partners nationwide. A full list of businesses providing services and assistance for Floridians impacted by Hurricane Ian can be found at floridadisaster.biz/CurrentDisasterUpdates
A sampling includes:
- Airbnb: AirBnB has launched a website to help Hurricane Ian Relocation efforts for impacted residents at Airbnb.com/hurricaneianflorida. It is also working with its nonprofit partners to offer vouchers for temporary housing at Airbnb properties. To learn more about how the voucher program works, see Airbnb’s full press release linked here.
- Expedia: VISIT Florida has activated the Emergency Accommodations Portal at Expedia.com/Florida with the latest available hotel listings. Expedia reached out encouraging their partners to waive cancellation fees and to waive pet restrictions.
- Rosen Hotels & Resorts: Rosen Hotels and Resorts is activating their Florida Residents Distressed Rates to give Floridians a safe, affordable place to ride out Hurricane Ian. Evacuees can call 866-33-ROSEN (76736) to reserve a room.
- Uber Technology: Uber, is offering round-trip rides to and from Southwest Florida shelter locations in Orange, Brevard, Seminole, Volusia, and Osceola counties listed here. Riders can enter promotional code IANRELIEF in the app to redeem a free round-trip up to $30 each way. Rides must be requested to or from any state-approved evacuation shelter in Florida.
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