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New Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach Designed with Turtles in Mind

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Wyndham Hotel Group just opened its new-construction, 343-room Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach in Clearwater Beach, Fla. The two-tower resort, owned by Florida philanthropist Dr. Kiran Patel and managed by Wyndham Hotel Group, sits just steps from Pier 60 and the white sands of Clearwater Beach, one of the best beaches in the United States. Interestingly, the hotel was designed with turtles in mind. According to Alexandra Piscitelli, a spokesperson for the property, an exterior glazing was designed to meet various requirements including the need to comply with a 45 percent light transmittance standard that is specifically established in order to reduce light levels on the beach due to nesting sea turtles. The west coast of Florida is a prime area for turtles that nest along the beach during the summer months beginning in May. The season lasts through the end of October. By reducing the light levels of the windows and glass sliding doors of the hotel as viewed from the beach, the hatchlings that emerge from nests buried in the sand and dunes are able to differentiate the light created by the stars over the Gulf of Mexico and head for the water. High levels of light confuse the hatchlings who can be found headed in the landward direction if attracted by the bright lights of the buildings close to the beach. The glazing effectively reduces the level of lighting visible from the beach and is an eco-friendly nod to the endangered turtles that frequent the Clearwater area. There were 1,499 loggerhead turtle nests in seven Florida Gulf Coast counties in 2015.

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