Whilst I am prepared to pay for a luxury hotel when I go on holiday (or at least use rewards points to bag an upgrade), I am not so fussy that I demand, diva like, to receive white doves and rose petals when I travel on business. I have a simple rule. The hotel must at least be up to the standard of my own home.
The mattress in my home bedroom is not made of stone. I do not buy rough toilet tissue and my towels are not made out of bleached iron wool. So I don’t want these features when I’m travelling.
Unfortunately these days a grubby hotel with spartan furnishings may be all the corporate travel budget can bear. If I do get landed with a grim hotel I usually console myself that it is only for one or two nights. But it’s not a hard bed and lack of fluffy towels that upsets me most though. My three main gripes with hotels throughout the world, but mainly in the UK, are as follows:
- Extra charges for WiFi
- Cold, congealed breakfast buffets
- Outrageous charges for mini-bars
In addition I am also put off by sprawling mega-hotels with endless check-in and check-out queues, which teem with masses of humanity fighting for space in the bar or the restaurant.
So I am delighted to have found a hotel chain, Indigo, which hits the spot in almost every way and succeeds in these 3 ways to improve hotels. Indigo Paddington, for example, is a flawless diamond hidden down a street about 2 minutes walk from Paddington station. This makes it a perfect base for business and pleasure trips. It only has 60 or so rooms so it feels intimate and cosy.
The rooms are quite small but they are brimming with lovely colourful fabrics, pictures and decorations. The bed is liberally covered in throws and cushions and is delightfully comfortable. In the bathroom is one of those showers with a head the size of a plate so you feel as if you are standing in the rain. If this is too much for you just use the second hand held shower head.
All rooms have free WiFi and soft drinks from the mini-bar are complimentary.
At breakfast you order from a menu and your plate is prepared fresh and brought to your table by the waiter. This alone would set Indigo above the majority of hotels in London. And they are appearing in other UK cities.
Over to you: What are your hotel grumbles? Have you found a hotel or chain that provides a great service at a good price. Please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts.