Somewhere in the middle of Minnesota, we began to feel hopeful. The sun was shining for the first time since it dropped below the clouds of a misty sunset near Spokane, WA. We’d been tested by storms in Montana, Wyoming, and North Dakota. Our windshield washer lines were still empty and frozen, but we had a full tank of gas and quality tunes on the stereo.
We could afford some time to be philosophical.
With family in Pennsylvania and NY(not C), and with Kristina attending college in upstate NY, and now this recent road trip, we have a lot of punches in our hotel/motel ticket. We have opinions. We know a little about what we like and don’t like. However, I prefer to focus on the positive.
Between us, Kristina and I developed a list for the hoteliers of America to compare with their offered services. Holiday Inn Express, Hilton Garden Inn, Courtyard Inn, Best Western (Plus), and the rest of you, please take note. Some of you are doing a better job than others.
Things we love to see in hotel rooms:
- glass glasses in the bathroom
- ceramic cups for coffee/tea
- quiet fans on in-room HVAC units
- rolling carts for luggage
- extra blankets
- actual hangers (not the kind you have to wrestle pieces from, like possessed tinker toys)
- free wi-fi in the room
- room for yoga stretches
- curved shower curtain rods
- shower heads with good pressure and an abundance of hot water (even higher-end hotels can suffer on this one)
- high shelf for toiletries in the shower (melty soap = ew)
- separate switch for bathroom fan
- the existence of a bathroom fan
- high toilets (maybe not a factor for others, but we are tall people)
- room on the vanity for toiletries
- several outlets for charging electronics
- accessible outlets for charging
- luggage stand
And these total bonus items items are welcome additions:
- variable bed firmness (bliss for sore backs)
- a comfy chair (although I’d give it up in a heartbeat for room to stretch before hitting the road again)
- two sinks – one inside the bathroom, one outside (I know – I said these were bonus items)
(I know this is not on the order of world peace or clean water for all. But if you travel and stay in hotels, these things can matter – or at least, make a difference.)
Of course, it’s not economically feasible in all markets to offer all of these amenities. But man, it’s wonderful when they are there. It makes a solid welcome for road-weary travellers.
And in case you are wondering – over the last few years, Hilton Garden Inn is winning.