A group of zoo-dwelling western lowland gorillas will be sleeping in comfort with the donation of some ageing luxury hotel bed linen from a Chicago Hilton hotel, according to the Chicago Tribune.
The Hilton Chicago/Oak Brook Hills Resort donated the 250-thread count bed sheets to the Lincoln Park Zoo, solving the issue of how to recycle hotel bed linen as well as how to comfort the captive gorillas.
The western lowland gorillas will use the luxury sheets for nesting according to Sharon Dewar, spokesperson for the Lincoln Park Zoo.
“Gorillas build up their nests each night in the wild, using everything from leaves and grasses to branches. In the past, adding sheets to their bedding material has been well-received by the gorillas”, said Ms Dewar.
“It’s just a way of providing something a little bit different to construct their nests.
“Different is interesting for the animals in our care. It’s a way of keeping them stimulated,” she added.
Ed Bell, director of housekeeping at the Hilton Chicago said, “It was just kind of nice to help them out.”
“It’s a world-class zoo, so we want to make sure the animals get world-class treatment with our linens.”
Bell told the Tribune that the hotel normally replaces its sheets annually if they are in good condition. The hotel has recently been rebranded the Hilton Chicago, with the rebranding prompting the property to completely change the linen and creating a need to repurpose the linen. The company sent most of the old sheets, towels, pillows and bedding to homeless shelters, but also sent around 100 sheets to the zoo for the comfort of its gorillas.
“We let the gorillas make their own beds,” Ms Dewar added.