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Friday, August 15, 2008

10 things that annoy us about hotels #7 Power to the people!

If we go out to dinner one more time leaving laptops, cameras, phones, and batteries supposedly charging, only to find that the power goes off five seconds after we leave the room, we’re going to collectively scream. We don’t have a problem with the lights and the TV going off, but these days, surely just about everyone has at least a couple of devices that might need charging while they’re out. We’ve discovered recently that many ‘credit card’ style room keys even have microchips in them so that we can’t just insert any card in the slot to keep the power on (we have quite a collection of them, you see). Even getting two cards from reception and leaving one in when we go out has also failed recently because housekeeping has come in and turned down the bed anyway, removing our card on the way out – which didn’t do much for our hard drive backups that were underway! And yes, we did have the ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign on the door…
We recently stayed at the Ripa Hotel, Rome, a property boasting a contemporary design and decent amount of technology (and endearing old-fashioned extras such as champagne on ice!), that somehow still gets it right, so we asked General Manager, Arianna Roscioli, to respond: "One of the reasons guests don't have problems with doors and with the power at the Ripa is because we still use normal keys and we have a jack to turn on the power. We are not so hi-tech, yet we still provide guests with the latest technology, in-room internet access, a flat screen television, and a CD player. Personally, I think we should all try not to be so dependent on digital gadgets when travelling. I have three children from 9 to 18 and when we travel now we need a trolley just for all our cameras, laptops, ipod stations and cell phones. I guess that trying to save on utility expenses is important for any hotel in the world as well as being good for the planet, but I understand that some hotels are just a bit too much, and the rooms are more like a golden jail than a nice place to live and stay. I also don't like the electronic key system too much because it's not good for the health. I like to suggest that all travellers travel with a black tourmaline crystal to put near their laptop to neutralize the effects of electromagnetic radiation."

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