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Laura Marano

"Chilling out on the bed in your hotel room watching television, while wearing your own pajamas, is sometimes the best part of a vacation."
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Diane von Furstenberg

"When you get into a hotel room, you lock the door, and you know there is a secrecy, there is a luxury, there is fantasy. There is comfort. There is reassurance."
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George Bernard Shaw

"The great advantage of a hotel is that it is a refuge from home life."
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Bill Bryson

"I still enjoy traveling a lot. I mean, it amazes me that I still get excited in hotel rooms just to see what kind of shampoo they've left me."

Tips for Improving Your Hotel’s Service

clean hotel room

People have always asked me what makes my hotel so stellar, despite it being a relatively mid ranged budget hotel. My answer is that I give extra special attention to the service at my hotel. So, how do you improve the service of your hotel anyway?

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Staying Fit While Travelling – is it Possible?

E and D

We all know that travelling makes everyone (with almost no exception at all unless they’re one of the very very lucky ones that never ever gain weight no matter what they try) quite a bit prone to gaining a few pounds and perhaps growing just a bit more rotund.

It’s almost unavoidable really–most people when on vacation tend to eat since they want to taste local cuisine. Plus most of the time people just tend to let go and have fun when they’re on vacation. Drinks are had, food is eaten, and everyone ends up leaving happy…but just a slight bit more round.

3 Travel Training Tips for Working Out & Staying Fit on the Road

But of course there are some of us that don’t want to go home from vacation having destroyed all the progress we’ve made in the gym.

So those people who want to stay fit even while travelling have found ways to do just that. It is possible…I mean just going by these tips that people have told me when I asked them (believe it or not many guests at my hotel make remarks about gaining weight, so I figured it might be a good idea to have some advice at the ready), it obviously can be done…as long as you put in the work.

So if you’re travelling and staying at a hotel soon, have a quick read of this, maybe it might help you!

gym in the hotelStay at a Hotel with Fitness Options
It goes without saying that staying in a hotel with perhaps a gym or some brilliant outdoor fitness equipment can help you to stay fit when you’re traveling.

You would have to go there during your downtime, of course, when you’re not busy exploring or going about doing all the things you’d planned. But even just thirty minutes in a day can make a difference.

Bring Running Shoes
Something you can do that never requires any equipment whatsoever is run. Running as a matter of fact is a great way to see the sights of the city/town (or wherever you are staying) while you put in your daily exercise.

It may not completely burn off everything that you’ve eaten that day, but at least it should help minimise any weight gain. If you aren’t the type to like running then just go for a brisk walk. It offers similar benefits.

running shoesTaste Everything but Practice Moderation
I know it’s incredibly difficult to not just indulge in everything you see especially with how delicious everything looks. Well you should.

You should try everything and have fun tasting everything you want to taste. But do just that. Taste. There’s no need to go overboard.

Hotel Room Exercises
If you have no other fitness options, then you can always just do some calisthenics in your hotel room.

Jogging in place, squats, push ups, lunges, those are all things you can do within the comforts of your own hotel room. That makes it a bit easier on you!

I’m sure you’ll find some way to stay fit that will work out for you! Good luck!

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Amenities That Improve New Hotels

Hotels are not always equal to each other. Some are better than others–that’s why we have the ratings system for them after all. The star system is around specifically for that reason–for people to know the quality of the hotel.

There are amenities that improve hotels and make them better than others too, aside from the very simple fact that some hotels are really just better than others–by name, by design, by reputation and so on and so forth.

Quite honestly, a good way for smaller, newer hotels to get ahead is to get amenities that will improve their hotel.

Let’s talk about amenities for hotels that improve the value for the customer–beyond the usual amenities that is, like a pool, a gym, conference rooms, ball rooms and so on.

These are amenities (okay some are not amenities but requirements, but the truth is not all hotels implement these requirements–trust me, I have been to hotels far and wide) that I try to implement in my hotels and any hotels that I manage.

Handicap Access
One of the most important things in my opinion is the fact that there should always be handicap access. Not just the ramps for the people who need to be in a wheelchair, but also assistance for anyone who is blind or hard of hearing.

handicap

It is also a good idea to have braille translations on most if not all signs. This to me screams “we are a hotel that cares for its customers” and I’m sure that these touches help to make a hotel guest feel most welcome and at home.

Childcare and Entertainment
Chances are that when some guests travel, they also bring their children. Now, make it easier on your parent guests by providing entertainment for children in the form of childrens outdoor play equipment or an indoor playroom somewhere.

childcare

Even better if you can have a day care in your hotel, so that parents can leave their children if they need to attend to some business during their stay, or if they need to leave the children somewhere for a while while they see a movie, a play, and so on.

Kids should never be left unattended, even on vacation. And they shouldn’t be left bored either!

Laundry Service
You would be surprised how many hotels do not offer this. But laundry service is a service that many guests will truly appreciate a hotel for–especially when they have packed only a few items for a much longer trip, or if they stained their clothes while out and about.

laundry

I have had guests come up to me and personally thank me for having a laundry service available in the hotel because they stained their beloved and the quick laundry service saved it!

I can think of many others but these two are the ones that are top of mind. I try to give this advice to every new hotelier I meet.

If you plan to travel to London, watch this video of the best hotels you can pick:

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Vacations with Your Kids – Choosing the Right Hotel for Your Family

hotel-room

If you are like me, then chances are that you sometimes get stumped about coming up with activities for the school holidays for your children. It’s not always easy, trying to come up with something that will keep them happy and engaged. But sometimes you figure out exactly what you want to do for them–send them to camp, send them to some sort of lessons, or heck, even take them on a vacation somewhere they’ve always wanted to go.

As a parent, I’ve been asked a few times by my kids to take them to amusement parks. And of course, we all know which one in particular all children want to go to…right? ;)

hotel

So one day I decided to surprise my children with the fact that I was taking them to Disney World in the US. But before I did that, I had to make sure that everything was all pre-planned, just because I prefer everything to be set as soon as humanly possible. So I booked all manner of tickets…and then of course there was the matter of choosing the right hotel.

Choosing a hotel that’s the right fit for your entire family isn’t always the easiest thing in the world. But thankfully given the fact that I am in the hotel business, I know what to look for. So here are a few tips in case you’re also looking for a hotel when you go on a vacation with your kids!

Amenities
The first thing you need to do is look at the amenities. All hotels are going to have hotel rooms. And beds. And bathrooms. But you need amenities suited to your children. Does the hotel have a pool? A playground? A daycare service just in case mum and dad want to go out on their own for a day?

bathroom

Some hotels have other amenities too that would make life easier for you as well, like laundry services (believe me, not all hotels offer it). So look for the best fit for you and your family. Of course amenities for mum and dad aren’t bad too.

Comfort
The second most important thing I look for when it comes to hotels when I am taking my kids with me is comfort. The beds have to be comfortable. The rooms have to be black out dark at night. It has to be quiet.

bedroom

 

Everyone–mum, dad, and kids–have to be able to get a good night’s sleep. Because going on vacation with cranky children is never any fun. The better quality sleep everyone gets, the happier everyone will be.

Price
Naturally when traveling everyone has a budget, so if you want to stay within it you are going to have to look for a hotel that is within your price range, but still ticks the two boxes above.

And I know that it can be difficult to book a hotel when you’re not even in the place itself, so what you can do is look online for reviews and base your decisions off that. Best of luck to you and your family–as well as your vacation!

You can also refer to this video on how to find a cheap hotel in London:

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Checking Into Pet Friendly Hotels

hotel

We are all about hotels here and of course we want to talk about varying accommodations to suit every kind of traveller. Today, we will be talking about animal lovers who enjoy travelling with their pets, whether it is around the world or just to another city.

More and more people are choosing to bring their pets with them while travelling or while on holiday. So it is no wonder that there are now more and more hotels that are willing to allow people to bring in their pets, particularly, dogs.

pet-hotel

Dogs are by far one of the most common pets so it is no wonder that hotels will usually cater to dog owners in particular. If you need some tips for checking into a pet friendly hotel, here they are:

Check online for pet friendly hotels
One of the things you need to do is to check online for pet friendly hotels at your destination. While a quick keyword search will often get you good results, you can also try certain websites that specialise in finding you dog friendly hotels by listing. It really helps if you want to check for specifics too, as many of these places will include pictures of the room and such.

Always call the hotel directly for their policies about pets
However, always make sure that you call the hotel directly to inquire about their policies, even if you can book online. Hotels have the right to change their policies without prior notice so it is quite possible that they may suddenly not accept pets at all.

relaxed-dog

When booking, make sure that you ask for any extra fees and requirements, and if your stay will include a deep clean to get rid of any pet hair and the like.

Make sure your pets meet the hotel’s requirements
Usually, hotels have specific requirements for those who want to take their pets in. First off, your pet has to be house trained and not soil the carpets or other surfaces of the room. Next, your pet has to be proven to be free of fleas and ticks, which could cause a nasty outbreak of parasites throughout the hotel. Most hotels will require that you provide proof of a clean bill of health as well.

Your dog should also be non-aggressive and quiet, as dogs who bark incessantly are a bother to all hotel guests.

Meanwhile, here’s a cool video some celebrity dogs checking into hotels:

Bring your own dog food
You should always bring your dog food as most hotels do not have a reliable stock of dog food available. If they did have dog food available, it is often of the low quality variety that could make your dog sick. I always choose high quality, grain free dog food to give to my dogs, so I always bring my own.

My suggestion is that you purchase dog food sold at wholesale, so that you can get a bulky order for a much lower price than the usual. This way, you will be able to feed your dog a healthy diet, even while you are inside a hotel.

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