Sunday, January 10, 2010

Babyproofing Your Room

Now that we're going back to Club Med Punta Cana and our child is slightly older and able to reach more things, like door locks, I'm thinking more about room safety. Note that I don't think the rooms are significantly more "risky" than any other hotel room - they seem fairly typical to me in that regard.

Update: See additional post-trip babyproofing comments as well.

Deliciousbaby has some great tips on babyproofing your hotel room without packing the entire safety department of a baby products store. We'll definitely be bringing duct tape!

Club Family and Deluxe Room Info
We haven't tried the new family suites so not sure what issues these room may pose for curious little ones. The following relates to the Club Family and Deluxe Rooms, and is drawn from memory. I'll update this post after our next trip.

Layout: Room layout includes a lavatory that is in a separate room from the sinks and shower/tub. There is also a large luggage room. Room will most likely include a porch, and door leading to it, covered by long drapes. Several tables with pointy corners.

Locks: Two guests recently reported on Tripadvisor that their kids locked themselves in the bathroom (read more here and here), so while we will also just be vigilant and explain about the locks, we are also bringing duct tape (as recommended in the Deliciousbaby post). Bathroom door locks weren't a risk on our previous trips as we were still in the diaper stage and our child wasn't tall enough to reach the door knobs and turn them, but I can see this might pose an issue for this trip. The door knobs for the luggage/closet room, lavatory, and bathroom are all round with buttons that depress in; I've looked at various door knob covers (and own one type that I'm not happy with) so I'm bringing door stops and duct tape. The door to the porch is lever style. It does lock, but I'm pretty sure it could be undone. Some parents have complained about their small kids being able to open this lever door and get out on the porch.
Photo of door knobs - lavatory door knob to the right

Outlets: The electrical outlets are US-standard size, so you can bring outlet covers from the States or use duct tape. My primary impression is that outlets were actually rather limited and less of a risk than at home; we may bring a powerstrip to help on that front (for camera, phone, laptop).

Corners: Plenty of corners. There are bedside tables, a table for the coffee maker, and, depending on your room, a writing desk.
Table with coffee maker:

Floor Surfaces: Floors are tile -- so hard, but cool. The shower floor is a different type of tile or "wood" that we all found quite slippery. We take extra precaution with our child in the shower, and everyone wears flip flops/shower shoes.

Club Family Bathroom (with baby tub that we requested):

Overall, the layout for the Club Family room was simpler - the Deluxe room was more spacious, but had two separate bedrooms and many doors (including two doors that separated the master bedroom from the extra bedroom), all of which locked.

This post is not intended to make you panic - the rooms are no better or worse than most hotel rooms, but I'll try to take some pictures and post them for folks who have very active kids.