An Open Letter to Hoteliers: My Hotel Room Wishlist

Okay, being a travel blogger who is currently travelling full-time, I’ve stayed in more than my fair share of hotel rooms (over 70 in the last year alone!) I’m the kind of person who laughs at people who complain in hotel reviews about the air-con only working when they insert the room key. (What, have they never stayed in a hotel before??)

So I’m putting these smallish requests for what to include in hotel rooms out there for anyone who works in the hotel business or is thinking of working in the hotel business. Especially if you’re building or renovating a hotel soon. Nothing fancy (I’ve come across these in decent budget hotels), but just the little things that I and most travellers would appreciate.

1. Include a Powerpoint on Each Bedside

Love it or loathe it, virtually everyone has a mobile phone and is addicted to sleeping with it next to them at night. For this reason, we appreciate having a powerpoint next to each side of the bed. We know this wasn’t a consideration in this past, but if your hotel has been built or renovated in the last 5 years…

Also, it’s not good enough just having it on one side. Couples aren’t always good at compromising when it comes to mobile gadgets.

Bonus: Even better if it’s a universal socket! I always travel with a universal adapter, but sometimes everyone forgets it. And I’m probably not the only one who’s had problems keeping a universal adapter and large laptop plug from falling out of the wall.

2. Well Thought-Out Lighting

Firstly, I’m yet to stay somewhere without a bathroom mirror, but I’ve stayed in plenty of places with no decent lighting at the mirror. The mirror isn’t just for decoration! When applying make-up or shaving is handy to have sufficient light to ensure that no disasters are happening to your face.

And while on the subject of lighting, in my opinion there only needs to be 3 settings: lit up, mood lighting (perhaps just bedside lamps) and dark. We don’t need individual light switches for every light! (And because we can never remember which switch is for which light, we just turn every single one on.) The one exception are bedside lights: please ensure they have individual switches, accessible from within bed. And especially not one switch for both of them! (And if you don’t have bedside lamps in the first place, you’d better be an extra budget hotel.)

3. Always Provide a Duvet

Virtually every hotel room I stay in has air-conditioning. (Fan-only rooms on the beach can be excused from this point.) And I always make use of it, partially because if it’s not switched on, the room becomes so stuffy that you can’t sleep (the windows obviously can’t be opened). Now I know some people can sleep in an ice-cold room with just a sheet or thin blanket (I’m thinking about most men), but I can’t.

No matter how hot the outside temperature is, make sure you provide a duvet. I don’t appreciate needing to also sleep under the bathroom towel, to stop waking up shivering from cold.

4. Let’s Ban Clear Bathroom Walls

When I recently stayed in Hong Kong, like many small rooms with tiny bathrooms, the bathroom walls were glass. However, it was “atomised” glass, which could be switched between being frosted and transparent. And it defaulted to frosted for those people who didn’t notice the switch. Which was good – the best of both worlds.

But glass walls that are simply transparent? A big no! I can’t imagine what it must be like for friends staying together in a room, but even happily married couples like to have some private moments, especially if they’re eaten something that doesn’t agree with them. (Something not uncommon when travelling.)

Bonus: Another nice bathroom design feature at that same Hong Kong hotel: the bathroom door doubled as the shower door. (I told you it was small!) Meaning that if someone was in the shower, the rest of the bathroom was still accessible.

5. Provide Conditioner as well as Shampoo

This is mainly just an Asian thing, but so many hotels I’ve stayed in lately don’t have separate conditioner. Usually only “conditioning” shampoo. We’re provided with shower caps, and toothbrushes, and make-up applicators, and shaving kits, and everything possible, just not conditioner. Maybe most women in Asia don’t need conditioner? But if you saw my hair, especially without being conditioned, you would understand.

This is doubly important if your hotel is at the beach or near a beach or even has a pool. Multiple swims at the beach and long, thick hair that isn’t conditioned is a recipe for knots so bad you need a quick haircut.

Do you have any other essentials requirements that aren’t always met when staying in a hotel? Let me know below!

4 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Hoteliers: My Hotel Room Wishlist

  1. Have to agree with most of these Shandos. Haven’t had that glass door situation yet, would weird me out though!

    If there’s no universal plugs, always nice when reception has a bunch available (even if a deposit is required as they’re hot property!)

    Hehe at sleeping under a towel, good to be a guy 😀

  2. We first stayed in a hotel with switch glass in Basel and loved it. The last place we stayed (in Margaret River) actually had no glass between the living area and bathroom which was made worse by the fact the toilet was in the bathroom with no separate door. Not nice when we had guests and one of us had to use the bathroom. I hope hoteliers are reading this useful information on what we like (and dislike) in a hotel.

    1. Yikes, that’s very awkward! I can understand having a fancy bath out on display, instead of behind a wall, but the toilet!

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