Lessons from a hotel stay

When I was in elementary school I saw a news story about an NBA coach who negotiated a permanent hotel room into his contract.  By that I mean it was simply that the team was putting him in hotel rooms when they traveled, but his residence in the team’s home town was a penthouse suite in an upscale hotel.  He was the first person I had ever heard of living in a hotel.  I thought it was brilliant, and I decided one day I too would live in a hotel.

There’s no place like home, no better place to sleep than your own bed, and I would hate to give up the benefits of ownership, but I do still very much enjoy staying in hotels.  Last weekend we stayed at The Signature at MGM Grand in Las Vegas.  Some of the amenities and the configuration of the suite got me thinking about things hotels just seem to get right.

The first thing that always catches my attention about hotel rooms is how little they contain.  I mean, there are piles of stuff in my house that I think I might need some day, so I can’t get rid of it. I go to throw something away and I think, “Some day I might need this and I’ll be mad when I realize I once had it.  Then I’ll have to buy it again.  Keeping this is like saving money (in the future).” I know that’s silly, but that’s pretty much how it plays out in my head.  I’m not just a general pack rat, but there are certain things I never throw away.  But if I go stay in a hotel I don’t have any of these things, and I seem to get along just fine.  When I return from a stay in a hotel I’m tempted to get rid of anything I haven’t used in the last 6 months.  I never do it, but I think about it.

The Signature was the first hotel room I can remember staying in with a flat panel HDTV.  That alone would have been pretty impressive, but they topped that with the TV in the bathroom.  That was pretty nice.  The bathroom also had a jacuzzi and you could see the TV from there.  I turned up the volume up on that TV and watched SportCenter through the glass door of the shower once, just because I could.  The only place in the suite you couldn’t see a TV from was the toilet, which was in it’s own little room, but it did have a phone.  It was a two line phone so I was tempted to call Chrissy from the toilet room, but I decided she wouldn’t think it was funny.

A few other things I made a note of in our last hotel stay, but won’t go into so much detail about:

  • There’s a button you press when things need to be cleaned. This is the Signature’s answer to the little sign you normally place on the door knob.
  • Large mirrors around the suite really open up the room.  And there’s this one crazy mirror on a boom in the bathroom, just in case you need to see your face at the sub-atomic level.
  • High-end appliances from Sub-Zero, Miele and Bosch.
  • The iHome clock radio was convienent for charging my iPod.
  • Two sinks in the bathroom.  I got used to this at our last house and we don’t have it any more.  Next house.
  • June Jacobs soaps.  Even though it’s really wasteful, I like the tiny bottles in hotels.  I’ve nver heard of June Jacobs, but the products did smell pretty good.
  • Robes.  I didn’t use a robe, but I liked knowing it was there.  Every time I opened the closet it made my think of a gi, which was nice.
  • The lights in the closet turn on when you open the door.
  • Every light switch was a dimmer.
  • A selection of Numi teas, which are really nice.  The coffee in the suite was good, too.  In fact, it seemed like every cup of coffee I had in Vegas was exceptional.
  • Marble and Granite.

Leave a Reply