I like staying in high-end hotels just as much as the next traveler. I have been fortunate (thanks to points) to have stayed at quite a few high-end hotels and always really enjoy my stays there.
But, there are many times that I stay at mid-range hotels as well. There are many reasons for that – savings of points/cash, availability, location – and many times my stays there are very pleasant as well. In fact, there are 4 things that mid-range hotels have that many high-end hotels do not have that make them even more convenient for me at times.
5 Things That Mid-Range Hotels Have That Many High-End Hotels Do Not Have
I understand that the reason that high-end hotels do not have these items in the rooms is largely because their typical customer does not want to have these things because the hotel provides services that are more convenient. However, I (and others) do not typically use those services because of cost so it is nice to know that you can normally find them at the mid-range hotels.
Standalone Heating/AC Units
This can be a huge annoyance – I know! Sometimes they may not work or they may be quite noisy, but there are some reasons I do prefer them.
One of the reasons is that I can control the heat/AC much easier. Many hotels may put controls on their control units to prevent the guest from making it too cool/too warm. Most of the time, I am able to simply turn the knob on the standalone units to get it as cool/hot as I want it.
It is also in a fixed location. Again, this can be a bad thing, but if I am trying to cool off after a very hot run, I can sit down/stand right next to the unit and cool down quickly. The same is true when I am working in the room and it is very hot/cold outside. I can move my station to a place that allows me to warm-up/cool-down quicker.
Finally, these units make excellent dryers for when I am washing my running clothes. All I need to do is to bring a chair over to the unit and drape my clothes over the chair/hanger hanging from the chair and position it in front of the vents. In little time, my clothes are dry and ready for the next day’s use.
This is a slight pet peeve of mine. I always bring my own juice/water/soda to a room. I like it chilled so I like to use the refrigerator. The high-end hotel will stock the fridge with beverages for purchase and, in many hotels, will have an automatic billing system. It is efficient for them and also can make them a little more money if you don’t pay attention. The way it works is when you lift a drink from the shelf, the system automatically dings your account for that drink and also notifies the staff so that they can replace it the next day. If you don’t notice the sign mentioning that, you can find yourself on the hook for several drinks just because you wanted to cool off your cans of Pepsi.
In mid-range hotels, they will either be sparsely filled as a mini-bar or will not have any drinks at all. Not only that, but the refrigerators provided are typically provided for the guest to make use of so they are larger than the typical mini-bar. Perfect for the guest that likes to bring their own drinks/keep food.
Ice Machines/Normal Sized Ice Buckets
Again, at higher end hotels, you may or may not find ice machines on your floors. If not, you can ask the staff to bring you some, but I again prefer to just do it myself. If they do have ice machines, often the buckets they give you are pretty small.
I like a nice sized ice bucket and an easily accessible ice machine. In the event that hotel I am staying at does not have a usable refrigerator, I use the ice bucket and the provided bag to fill the sink with ice and put my drinks in there. It is quick and easy to do and works very well.
When traveling with a family, it is not a rare thing to have pizza or something else for a meal during the stay, on the way to the hotel. Being able to keep that food and reheat it (or reheat anything else) is always a nice convenience. Forget finding a microwave at most high-end hotels! Most of their customers are going to utilize room service or the dining room, not a microwave! But, I do enjoy having one as an option (yes, I realize that some of them can be very nasty!).
Again, this is not something you are likely to find in a high-end hotel. The clotheslines are normally found in the shower and are made up of a retractable line in a disk on one end of the shower and a small disk on the other with a slit to slide the end of the line into.
If you are like me and you wash your running clothes (or maybe some other clothes) during an extended stay, having those lines can be a great help (especially if you do not have a standalone heating unit).
Are any of these things necessary? No, but they do help me during some of my stays and I appreciate their convenience. I fully understand that they are not present in high-end hotels because the hotel provides services so that the guests do not have to do those things themselves. But, I also know what it can cost to get a couple pieces of clothes washed by the hotel. In many cases, I did not even pay that for the clothes in the first place!
I know there are some that would say “then why are you staying in the high-end hotels in the first place?” Understand, I am not complaining about any of these things! I simply find that they add to my convenience for some of my traveling style. At the same time, I do enjoy being able to use points to stay at high-end properties and know going there that I am not going to find the larger refrigerator without any drinks in it. I am ok with it!
Is there anything you find helpful at certain classes of hotels that make them your go to categories?