When I was writing my review of Panoramica Heights last week – and while we were staying in it, actually – I got to thinking about some of the little, seemingly inconsequential things that can either make or break a hotel, depending on your point of view.
Now, I’m not talking here about either the absolute basics or the total luxuries. I mean, I think we can all probably agree that comfortable beds and clean rooms should be a given when it comes to hotel stays, while things like top class spas, say, or maids who turn down the bed for you each night and carefully arrange your makeup by size, while nice, don’t exactly fall into the “can’t live without it,” category for most of us. No, I’m thinking more along the lines of…
POWER POINTS NEXT TO THE BED
Seriously, though, is there ANYTHING more annoying on holiday than climbing into bed, then realising there’s no power outlet next to it for your phone, so now you’re going to have to charge it on the other side of the room, and how will you scroll through Instagram for three hours before falling asleep NOW? HOW WILL YOU, THO?
(Other than realising there’s a karaoke bar directly under your hotel room, I mean. That was WAY more annoying…)
A FULL-LENGTH MIRROR SOMEWHERE IN THE ROOM
I can’t even count the number of times I’ve had to climb onto the bed in order to try to see what my outfit looks like in the tiny mirror above the dressing table. GOD. Or the number of times there hasn’t even been a tiny mirror above the dressing table, so I’ve had to position a hand mirror on a chair, and then stand at the other side of the room, and squint at it for a while, before finally giving in and asking Terry to take a quick picture of me on my phone, so I could decide whether my outfit was passable or not.
Oh, and speaking of my phone, I once stayed in a hotel in which the only mirror in the entire room was a teeny-tiny one inside the dark, window-less bathroom, which meant I had to apply my makeup more-or-less in the dark – which, seriously, NEVER ends well for me. (Still smarting over that time in Clearwater when I emerged from the bathroom, where I’d been cheerfully applying bronzing powder in very bad lighting, only for Terry and my mum to instantly fall off their respective chairs because they were laughing so hard at me. Nope, still not over it…)
Neatly combining these two points, meanwhile, I also require…
A POWER POINT NEXT TO THE VANITY/DESK/OTHER SURFACE USED FOR MAKEUP AND HAIR
Because many are the times I’ve had to crouch awkwardly on the floor next to the only available power-point in the room, trying to curl/dry my hair, while staring into the reverse camera on my iPhone… which ALSO never really ends well for me, now I come to think of it. (Also, I try REALLY hard to avoid looking at myself in the reverse camera on my phone, unless I have that Instagram filter that smoothes out your skin and makes you look like you have amazing eyelashes switched on…)
So, lots of power points, is the takeaway from this one, I think. AAAALL the power points. Everywhere. Thank you.
LOTS OF CLOTHES HANGERS, INCLUDING ONES FOR SKIRTS AND TROUSERS
I mean, I like to over-pack, so I’m aware I’m probably being totally unreasonable here, but I don’t think I’ve ever stayed in a hotel room that’s had an adequate amount of hangers for my clothes, and that makes me sad – and also creased, because it means I end up having to drape things around the room instead of hanging them up, and I’m just not about that life. Oh, and while I’m on the subject, am I seriously the only person who likes to wear skirts sometimes? Because the lack of appropriate hangers for them would suggest that yes, I definitely am?
Speaking of being creased, meanwhile…
AN IRON. OR ACCESS TO ONE, AT LEAST.
Yeah, yeah, I know what you’re going to say: everyone else in the world is the owner of spechul, magic clothes, which the creases “just fall out” of, and thus has no need for an iron, like, EVER. Furthermore, YOU all have BETTER things to do with your time than iron clothes, so you just pull them out of your suitcase and throw them on, and no one can even tell they’ve not been ironed. It’s a miracle, truly!
Guys, I just… I don’t know what to tell you here. I mean, I roll my clothes rather than folding them. I try to pick fabrics that won’t crease too badly. I hang them in the bathroom while I’m having a shower. And still – STILL – all of my clothes look like I’ve spent two weeks sleeping in them, unless I iron them. I have no choice in the matter, I swear. (Because, yes, PEOPLE CAN TELL. Or they can with me, anyway…) This is why my favourite hotels are the ones which have an ironing board and iron in every room, and, failing that, I’ll settle for being able to hire one from reception. I’d continue to try to justify all of this, but, the fact is, I know that it honestly doesn’t matter what else I say in this post now, it’s just going to be about the whole “ironing/not ironing” thing, so I think I’ll just leave it there, shall I?
A DECENT HAIRDRYER
Because no one loves those odd, attached-to-the-wall ones that take 17 hours to dry your hair, do they?
Most hotels have wi-fi these days, but not all Wi-Fi is created equally, and I tend to find that (understandably, I guess), the larger the hotel, the less chance there is of getting online from your room. I’ve stayed in a few really nice hotels where the wi-fi in the room has been so dodgy that I’ve had to go down to the lobby any time I wanted to access the internet. And, I mean, I’m a blogger: I ALWAYS want to access the internet. Doesn’t everyone, though? Or are you all about to tell me that, as well as never ironing your clothes, you also never go online when you’re travelling? Oh God, you are, aren’t you? OK, well, that being the case, I really am going to stop here – although, not before I’ve asked you what kind of things you consider to be hotel room essentials?