The joys of room service are usually 90% fantasy and 10% based in reality. Sitting in a plush hotel room in an oversized robe and calling down to room service (while resisting the temptation to call whoever answers the phone Jeeves) is exactly the kind of luxury we want from a hotel stay; it’s an escape from the everyday. But the reality of room service has been a much starker thing with cold, chewy food and hardened bread rolls wheeled in to the bottom of your bed as you hold the door open with your foot.
Well, it seems that dry pastry baskets are a thing of the past, with hotels around the world coming around to the fact that if, in this day and age (or “in this economy,” take your pick), people are actually booking a room and paying for it, they’re expecting much more than a weight-sensored mini-bar with stale, unsalted peanuts. Take Beverly Hills’ SLS Hotel. Their very Spanish-inspired room service menu is trumped only by the roving cotton candy foie gras and caviar cone cart that penthouse guests can take advantage of.
And it’s not just high-end hotels adopting this new trend. The Ace Hotel in New York will send a hot or iced cup of super hip-and-delicious Stumptown coffee to your room 24 hours a day. At the Mandarin Oriental hotel in Miami, you’ll adopt a “hate to go, but love to leave” attitude when your stay comes to a close with a whimsical and tasty “Ready to Fly” meal.
If the London fog becomes too thick for you to leave your hotel, join the Charlotte Street Hotel’s Sunday screenings with a three-course meal just downstairs. Or let’s say you feel like a wine tasting but can’t possibly be bothered to leave your room? Hope you’re staying at the One and Only Palmilla, where the room service wine list reads like oenophile’s dream.
Now where to plan my next in-room mixology lesson?