I have travelled a lot throughout my career. My mother was right: I should have been a medical doctor, then I wouldn’t have had to “chase” my living (but that’s another story for another time).
When I was a corporate honcho, I stayed in very expensive upscale hotels, e.g., the Intercontimental chain. As an entrepreneuer, with my own money, I’ve tended to stay at budget hotels (Holiday Inn Express, Sheraton 4 Points). On a project, I will usually follow the client’s hotel guidelines, which generally tend to the mid-upper range (Sheraton, Westin). I have also stayed in some “boutique” hotels, renovated or built along some innovative architectural concept.
I have come to realize that there are a series of mathematical relationships, both direct and inverse, related to hotel price and amenities. Here are a few for your consideration:
- The higher the price of the hotel, the more asslickers there will be with their hand out to “help” you. In an upscale hotel, I always feel as if the change in my pocket is rattling very loudly! Notice the extended hand.
- The higher the price of the hotel, the more likely that the shower will be a nightmare designed by an architect who never stays in hotels, e.g., no glass door so that you wind up flooding the bathroom, an overhead shower head so that you can’t actually hose down your nether regions without assuming an inverted yoga assana (Oh, wait, maybe that’s where the word “assana” originated, from “ass in the air”!), or an “economizer” head that spritzes a gentle mist that will save the whales while leaving you with a sticky film of soap on your body all day.
- The higher the price of the hotel, the higher the likelihood that everything will be “extra”, and exorbitantly so. Parking will be in the $50/day range, while internet access is treated as if it were a rare metal and priced accordingly, metered out at $14.95 for 10 minutes or, much more affordably, $24.95 for a full day’s access. It does however, make the porn channels look quite attractive at only $16.95 for a 60 minute rumpy-pumpy. Local phone calls will be billed at $3-5 each. At the Westin Bayshore Vancouver last week, the kitchen didn’t have any decaf ready for breakfast, so the waitress offered me a decaf from the espresso machine instead. I asked for a refill of the miniscule amount. When the bill came, the two tiny cups cost $16 on top of the $30 for an egg white omelet!
- The higher the price of the hotel, the greater the likelihood that your bed will be so high that your feet will dangle on the edge and you’ll get a nosebleed while sleeping (And I’m 6’2”). It will also come with a proportionally high number of unusably thick, heavy pillows, most of which you will hurl across the room during the night and still wake up with a sprained neck from sleeping at a steeply craned angle. The duvet will be so thick it could be used for an Antarctic expedition, and it will be so heavy, you’ll feel like a convict strapped down on a gurney ready for the needle. You’ll wake up schvitzing in the middle of the night and pop open one of those $7 bottles of water placed as a “courtesy” on your night table. Hmmmmm……
- The lower the price of the hotel, the greater the likelihood that the hangers will be attached to the closet railing with that abominable and nefarious metal clip system that precludes you from using the hanger elsewhere in the room, or more importantly, putting it in your luggage on the way out. Do people really still steal hangers from hotels? So burn your logo into the wood and use it as a promotional item! Why drive the customers nuts?
- The lower the price of the hotel, the greater the likelihood that room service, if it exists, will be served on paper plates and with plastic cutlery. The “fresh” vegetables and fruit will be well past their prime, and the salad material will have wilted, brown edges.
- The lower the price of the hotel, the greater the likelihood that the shower will be terrific, with enough pressure to hose down a circus elephant. After all, nobody wants an angry 6’2” hairy gorilla barking at your front desk staff!