I’ve been traveling a ton lately and been very fortunate to stay at many stellar hotels. While some stuff tends to become one luxurious blur, others tend to stand out in the sea of hotels. Recently I started to take mental notes of things that truly grab my attention within my hotel rooms. I’m not talking about the special treats I usually find waiting in my room, but instead, something that is standard in the hotel. None of these items are particularly grand, but they do make me a happy hotel guest. Here’s a rundown of what I think should be standard in all luxury properties and the places I’ve seen it.
Spray Starch: The majority of hotel rooms, let’s say, three stars and above, come with an ironing board and iron. That’s just as basic as a phone these days. However, in all my years of traveling I’ve never seen a can of spray starch to accompany. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve pulled a pair of pants from my over-stuffed suitcase only to find them in need of a serious pressing. The only thing that will properly remove the wrinkles is a hot iron and a squirt of starch. Instead, I’m forced to fill the iron with water and hope the steam is powerful enough to make my clothes look presentable again. I ask you, how expensive could a can of starch in each room cost?
Who has it: Four Seasons Hampshire
During my short, two-night stay at the Four Seasons Hampshire many things impressed me, but none stood out more than the red and white can of spray starch sitting next to the iron. Oh, there were many stellar things about this property, but that one little touch differentiated itself from all the other five-star properties I’ve stayed in. Although nothing needed ironing on this trip, I was happy knowing that should I need to press a wrinkled shirt, I had the starch to do it with. What can I say? I’m easy to please.
Electrical Adapters: Any traveler worth their salt carries a litany of adapters. I’d say that I’m never without universal, UK, and Europe adapters. But sometimes even the most seasoned traveler forgets, loses, or breaks their adapters. I happen to have done all three. When I spent a month in Europe last fall, I was loaded down with European adapters; after all, Prague, Italy, Barcelona, and Paris all use the same plugs. Problem is that I forgot the three-night side trip to London. My two-pronged adapter would do me little good there.
Who has it: Four Seasons London Park Lane
I’ve professed that Park Lane might be my favorite hotel in the world, and the availability of adapters in my gorgeous suite was just one of the reasons. Imagine my relief when I saw the adapters already plugged into various outlets just waiting to reenergize my iPhone. I must say that Park Lane is not the only Four Seasons property that has this amenity. I’ve seen them also at Hampshire, while Canary Wharf and Paris have power strips built into desks that fit various size plugs. It’s the little things that mean the most.