My fellow BA blogger Ben a.k.a. Lucky is still testing living in hotels full time. I could never ever do this for one simple reason – noise – party noise. I HATE noise when I am trying to sleep. Light is no problem, I am used to Swedish summers after all, but noise is something else.
“Believe it or not, I don’t really care about suite upgrades anymore. When I’m traveling alone I care about a great desk, fast wifi, and a comfortable bed.”
I agree with him as someone who spends over a month a year in hotel rooms and who needs to work in the room each day that a good chair, desk & wifi are a must. Then a soft bed, to me, is another must if I want to not wake up with back pain the next day. But I strongly disagree with the suite upgrades because…
A suite is a noise buffer!
I really don’t care much about a ton of space and a view is nice but not a must. But having another set of doors between me and the hall just rocks. Or, as is the case with my recent stay at the Westin ATL airport they have a suite that is sorta an “L” that also creates a buffer. I was not, this visit, upgraded to that lovely suite.
Then, my last night, there was a party next door (or one door over – hard to tell). I called down to security twice. With each call the party got, not quieter, but louder. Then, to top it all off, the party is SO loud that a dude has to step out into the hallway to make a cell phone call. Perfect. The dude paces back and forth up and down the hall so the noise from his call goes from quite-ish to louDER AND LOUDER TO THen again softer and then repeat. Just PERFECT! I tweet to SPG, since I was up anyway, and was told it would be fixed. Party went on.
The next morning I was offered 2,500 SPG points as an “I’m sorry” effort. You know what, had I as a Platinum who will soon again re-qualify as Platinum been upgraded this would not have happened. Now I have stayed at the Atlanta airport Westin MANY times and I will be back again. I like the hotel overall.
What do you say? Do suite upgrades matter to you? Do you have one thing that is a deal breaker for you during a hotel stay? – René
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I agree with regard to suites and noise buffer. Often the location of suites is more conducive to a quieter room (end of hall, a bit further from other rooms). My largest number of stays are at casino hotels; and their security tends to be pretty good about breaking up parties. If I had to call more than twice, I would probably resort to
(a) insisting that security contact me directly after dealing with the noise issue or (b) call the local police directly (I would avoid this if possible); and of course, keep a log of all complaints.
Now, here is a twist. We had the largest top floor penthouse at Delano (formerly TheHotel in Vegas) a few years ago. There was a connecting room next to some of the suites (ours was close to 3,000 sq/feet and multiple rooms). We had a large suite party (20+ guests); nothing crazy, but 20+ people tends to be loud. The people in the single room next to this suite (which could further add a bedroom) kept complaining to the front desk about our party. The hotel solution was to have those people move. But, then again, casinos deal with things differently. They are not going to break up a party in a comp 3,000 sq/ft suite for someone who requested a room on a high floor. So, a reminder to folks. Avoid connector (single rooms) on floors of luxury suites. Sure, might sound great to be on a high floor; but often those floors have the largest number of “party suites.” You have been warned.
I’m hit and miss on which is louder – I’ve been in plenty of suites where adjacent suites were partying beyond bufferability. OTOH, I generally dislike suites overall – I travel alone most of the time, and feel weird knocking around in more than one room. Even with a companion, I usually decline a suite unless I’m trying to make an impression. Where I do appreciate a suite is on business trips with colleagues, where we can have meetings in the morning without my having to make the bed.
Depends if it’s a real hotel with real suites. Sadly, most of the big chains have pretty pathetic suite offerings, unless you’re at a flagship property. I’ve been at a Marriott a couple blocks from the White House and only had Murphy-style bed suites offered as a Marriott Platinum Premier.
At hotels like the Peninsula, I want a suite. At Courtyard, Hyatt, Sheraton or Marriott, not so much. As long as it’s clean.
I hate that Westin. I had a similar issue, midweek. People were doing pot in the hallway late at night. You would think they would at least be quiet about it but you would be wrong . The pool was so disgusting that my kid wouldn’t even get in it, and she has a very low standard of what’s acceptably clean.
To Lucky, I remind that a gilded cage is still a cage. To René, I say, ditto. That second door is a lifesaver. In those rare cases when it still does not muffle every stray sound, I place a towel under the outside door and inside door. Night, night!
Earplugs! Don’t leave home without em!
Sorry! My room was super quiet! Guess I was on the ‘right’ floor for once.