Holiday Inn makes light of the winter blues

November 21, 2008 // // Winter blues are a fact of life for millions of Brits during the dark, dank months between November and February. With the switch of British Summer Time to Greenwich Mean Time looming (26 October) and the clocks set to go back an hour, Holiday Inn is tackling the issue head on by making SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) alarm clocks available to hotel guests.

SAD, or "winter depression", is said to affect around two million of the UK's population each winter* and is recognised as a genuine medical condition that produces symptoms of depression, overeating and fatigue. The best cure to beat the symptoms is to expose the body to a regular dose of strong artificial daylight known as light therapy.

One method of light therapy is to use a sunrise alarm clock. Equipped with a computer controlled dimmer lamp, the bulb begins to light and the intensity is slowly increased until the alarm time is reached, simulating a natural sunrise and giving the body a natural light boost. Light therapy has been proven to brighten the lives of 85 per cent of users** putting you in a better mood, boosting alertness and helping you to feel more awake making it a great way to also improve your work environment.

Eleanor Conroy, spokesperson for Holiday Inn, said: "Light is vital to our wellbeing. As the days get shorter the body's clock can go out of sync with its rhythm of day and night and this can result in symptoms of depression. We want to ensure our guests have an enjoyable experience when they stay with us and, as this disorder affects around two million of the population, it was an issue we wanted to address. The SAD alarm clocks are now being trialled at a number of hotels across the country."

Holiday Inn will be making the SAD alarm clocks available to guests for free during their stay***. The clocks are available from reception desks.

*Figure taken from The Seasonal Affective Disorder Organisation

** Figure taken from

Notes to Editors:

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is the world's largest hotel group by number of rooms. IHG owns, manages, leases or franchises, through various subsidiaries, over 4,000 hotels and more than 590,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories around the world. The Group owns a portfolio of well recognised and respected hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites®, Candlewood Suites® and Hotel Indigo®, and also manages the world's largest hotel loyalty programme, Priority Club® Rewards with over 39 million members worldwide.

IHG has more than 1,700 hotels in its development pipeline, which will create 150,000 jobs worldwide over the next few years.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group's holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales.

IHG offers information and online reservations for all its hotel brands at and information for the Priority Club Rewards programme at For the latest news from IHG, visit our online Press Office at



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