Pooping In Public, The Newest Hotel Trend

open plan bathroom hotel
Bentley Smith, Flickr

They say traveling together will either bring you closer together or destroy your relationship, and the latest hotel design movement is certainly putting that concept to the test.

According to The Guardian, open-plan bathrooms are a growing trend in luxury hotels. Instead of hiding in a separate room, showers, baths and even toilets are now being placed right inside the bedroom. Occasionally, you’ll find walls separating the wet areas from the bedroom — although see-through glass does little to shield you from the eyes of your travel companion.A few hotels that have embraced this concept include the Lloyd Hotel in Amsterdam, the Renaissance Beijing Capital Hotel and the Ecclestone Square Hotel in London (though at least here you can flip a switch to turn the glass walls opaque).

While some couples might get a kick out of the less-than-private baths or showers, the placement of the toilet leaves a lot to be desired. After all, no matter how close you are with your partner, do you really want to be in on each other’s bowel movements? And what exactly do you do if you’re traveling with a relative, friend or business partner?

Making matters worse is the fact that some of these open-plan bathrooms are not just “open” to your roommate, but also to the public. At The Standard Hotel in New York, one suite features a floor-to-ceiling glass wall in the bathroom that faces out onto the street. And yes, people are watching. One hotel specialist told The Guardian that while staying at a different hotel in New York with a glass wall that faced the outside, she “could see a guy standing in a building looking at me having a shower.” Creepy or what?

Would you stay in a hotel with an open plan bathroom?

San Francisco Hotels Ripping Off Stranded Travelers?

san francisco golden gate bridge
Jeff Gunn, Flickr

Hotels in the San Francisco area have come under scrutiny for price gouging following the Asiana Airlines plane crash on Saturday.

Thousands of flights were postponed or cancelled following the tragedy, leaving many travelers stranded in the city. Apparently, the sudden surge in demand for hotels led many establishments to up their prices – in some instances, dramatically so.

According to an NBC News report, mid-range hotels in San Francisco (which typically charge around $100-200 per night) were listing their rooms for ten times the usual rate. One example included a Best Western hotel, which had bumped its sticker price from $149 to a whopping $999 for a one-night stay.When later probed about the sky-high room rate, Best Western claimed that the advertised rate was a “mistake” and told Hotelchatter that no guests were actually charged the $999 rate. Instead, they were charging $309 versus the usual $149 rate.

NBC found many other hotels in the city were also charging significantly above the usual tariff.

We want to know, have you seen or been asked to pay an exorbitant price for a San Francisco hotel room following the plane crash?

Check the alarm upon arrival – Hotel tip

I don’t know if it’s the maid setting the room’s alarm clock as a prank, or the occupants prior to my stay. In any case, too many times I have been abruptly awakened to a blaring alarm or loud music booming at my head from the nightstand.

Not the best way to start off a relaxing vacation.

Therefore, it’s become my custom to check — and turn off! — the room-provided alarm clock when I first arrive so there will not be any surprises at dawn. Or worse: at pre-dawn.

[Photo: Flickr | Robert S. Donovan]

Get an upgrade if it’s a special event – Hotel tip

To get the most out of what you pay a hotel, you may need to work your way into getting a better room. This particular trick really only works for couples. When checking into a hotel make sure to cling to together, be very physical, energetic, and happy. A clerk may ask “Are you here for any special occasion?” You must then say something like —

  • “Yes we are on our honeymoon!”
  • “It’s our wedding anniversary!”
  • “It’s my birthday!”

Any one of these must be said by the woman for it to be more touching and convincing, because the clerk knows that those are very special occasions for her.

Claiming a honeymoon or anniversary may score you a room upgrade. Claiming a birthday may just get something special sent up to the room.

Pay for windows – Cruise tip

Living on ship is a completely different experience than living at home, so why not have the best experience possible? I suggest splurging on a room with windows.

Although cabins in the center of the boat may have a more attractive price tag (read: cheaper), the beauty doesn’t extend much further. Waking up to total blackness in the middle of the day can be confusing and not very pleasant.

Rooms with windows allow natural light to shine through and wake you gently from your slumber — a big factor if you choose to cruise for an extended period.