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Whine list from recent trip to NM.
Old 07-08-2017, 01:36 PM   #1
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Whine list from recent trip to NM.

Just got back earlier this week from a trip to Southern New Mexico - 12 nights - 7 hotels.

We had a great time. Too many wonderful experiences to relate so I'll just mention the bad stuff and one good thing.

1. At one hotel I had the worst hotel experience I have ever had and I have traveled quite a bit. Fortunately, we were only booked there two nights and ended up staying just one. The hotel was actually really nice. The rooms were better than what we normally get and the landscaping around the hotel was beautiful and the only real problem was that the doors opened directly to the outside rather than into a corridor.

After the first night I got up early and stepped outside to take some shots of the sunrise. When I went back into the room - my girlfriend said "What are all these dead bugs on the floor?". There were literally hundreds of dead bugs on the tile floor between the door and the carpet. They looked like some kind of beetle. I stepped outside and there were even more on the floor there.

Just at that moment a hotel employee was passing so I showed him the bugs and he said that it happens a lot in the summer. I asked him how full the hotel was, wondering if we could switch rooms. He said it wouldn't matter and then walked me along the entire row of rooms on that floor. There were hundreds of these things outside each door. He said they keep spraying and they keep coming back.

I go back into the room and start looking around. Here's a live one on the air conditioner and another on the light stand and oh crap here's one on my pillow. So we decide to check out immediately.

We load up the car and go down to the front desk and explain the situation to the girl working there. She admits there's a problem and that they have pest control spray every week. I tell her that I'm checking out right now and I want a discount for last night. She says we still have to pay for both nights and she can offer a 10% discount. I ask to speak to the manager, who of course is not there (It is only 6:30 or so). He'll be there about 8am.

We decide to have breakfast (which is free) and wait for him to arrive. Eggs, bacon, toast, yogurt, coffee and orange juice all lined up ready to eat when I see another of the bugs crawling across the table! All the food goes in the trash and we drive to the nearest McDonalds. As we are walking out the door I hear one of the cleaners give a little yelp. I ask her what's the matter and she says with a list in her hand - "All these people checking out today". Gee - no kidding!

Later that morning we come back and have a chat with the manager who is fairly unsympathetic and claims it has only been happening for the last three days. His attitude changes when I show him the pictures I took (pictures of the bugs that is - not the pictures of the sunrise - my photography is not that inspiring) and we end up getting a huge discount. It got to the point that I felt sorry for him and promised I wouldn't post a bad review on line.


2. This is nowhere near as bad as the previous one, but I have to ask why do they build hotels right next to freeways? sometimes on hills overlooking freeways. I don't understand why they think I want to be re-acquainted with the Doppler effect early every morning.

In a similar vein why do so many hotel rooms have noisy air conditioning units? especially in the Southwest where they are really necessary. Sometimes it can be impossible to sleep while they're on. The trick seems to be to turn the AC on full blast and get the room into the low 60s and then turn it off just before you go to sleep. Inevitably though, it means waking up in the middle of the night sweating like a pig and having to turn it back on again.


3. This happened on our last night at an airport hotel. I'd made sure the hotel was far enough away from the airport and any nearby freeways for any noise from those sources to not be a problem. Furthermore, the air conditioning was exceptionally quiet. Looking forward to a good night's sleep and bang. Was that a gunshot? It sure sounded like one. No maybe it was a firework. I fall asleep only to be woken up a few minutes later by police sirens. About 45 minutes of flashing lights and random shouting later it quietens down. Fast asleep again.

Suddenly, at 5am exactly, I'm woken from a dead sleep by a very loud fire alarm? No, maybe it's my cell phone? No - it's the clock radio! In my groggy state I decide to unplug it. Damn that was the lamp. Try again. Got it. I just unplugged it and it's still beeping! but it's a different tone. It must be the low battery warning now. Plug it back in and we are back to the original problem. Finally get it turned off properly.

Neither of us got back to sleep after that.

I realize this is my fault and I should have checked that was off before going to sleep but, come on - who uses a clock radio as an alarm in this day and age? I haven't checked for that in about 10 years or so.

Finally down at breakfast, there are two male kids from the same family - not babies but still fairly young, that seem to think it is a good idea to have a competition to see who can scream in the most annoyingly loud high pitched tone. Their parents don't seem to care. If they are not careful those kids'll grow up to be social media stars or something. (Look at me! Look at me! Look at me!)

Maybe I'm showing my age, but if I had tried that as a kid - my parents would have at first been concerned that I was in extreme pain, quickly followed by my dad questioning my masculinity and then giving me something to scream about.

4. Finally, our flight was late getting into Chicago and we almost missed our connection. The flight reached the gate at 5:09 and our next flight left the gate at 5:28. We had to run across to the other terminal which at my age is always a bit comical and involves lots of heavy breathing and pains in usual places.

This is actually the good thing though. I was so sure that our checked bags had not made it that I went straight to the United baggage office rather than wait at the carousel. But the bags made it!

I've had my share of bags not showing up in the past but when you think about it, imagine how difficult it must be to schedule all the baggage handlers and baggage carts when flights are arriving early and late and often at a different gate than planned. Plus the baggage carts have to travel back and forth across an area shared by moving planes with limited visibility, and shuttle buses and random airport staff. I'm guessing that the bags from our plane probably had around 20 or so different destinations and yet they still managed it in less than 19 minutes. Hats off to United Airlines!
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Old 07-08-2017, 01:47 PM   #2
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All in all, an average quick getaway! Ah, travel
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Old 07-08-2017, 01:56 PM   #3
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All in all, an average quick getaway! Ah, travel
Isn't it lovely? And forum people wonder why I'd rather stay happily at home, where I can sleep in my own bed, eat the healthy foods that I want to eat, and enjoy retired life to the max here where everything is exactly the way I want it to be (NO BUGS! for example).

Oh well, guess I'm just not cut out for travel. My family thinks I'm nuts too, due to my lack of interest in traveling. Maybe one of these days a light bulb will appear over my head, and I will get it.
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Old 07-08-2017, 02:05 PM   #4
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I always check the alarm clock when we check in, we have had similar experiences. And when your in a dead sleep in a new place it takes longer to find and disable.
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Old 07-08-2017, 03:26 PM   #5
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Were the bugs Cicadas? Show us the pics. Those emerge in droves that cover the sidewalks and trees and are a force of nature that can't be managed.
I used to live across a one lane road from farmland, grass fields of fescue. When that was harvested I would get swarms of flying insects. Then when they burned the fields I would get mice. I had a great picture once of about 6 neighborhood cats lined up at the ditch waiting for the run off.
For the second question. Sure freeways are noisy and polluted but how far away would you go to stay if you are just traveling through. It is a money thing.
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Old 07-08-2017, 03:43 PM   #6
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Yes, sounds just like travel ;^> We've had several threads about travel annoyances that are familiar to everybody.

The loud a/c is everywhere we've stayed, even higher-priced places. I use ear plugs to shut out the noise.

Motels are built near freeways because of zoning laws, because land is cheaper there, and because it's easier for travelers to find the places. Again, higher-priced places (e.g. Four Seasons resorts) are generally farther from the roaring roads, and consequently more peaceful.
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Old 07-08-2017, 04:29 PM   #7
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Since this seems to be the b*tchin' about hotels thread, let me jump onboard...

It has always bugged me that hotels waste so much money on the damn lobbies that could be better spent on the rooms. Ohh, marble dolphin statues spitting water at each other in the foyer ?!! How about you repaint my damn room instead.

After a recent trip to Europe, I was reminded how much better they are over there at noiseproofing hotel rooms than we are in N. America too. For instance, they use SOLID and HEAVY doors with overlapping jambs to block noise from the corridors. And the corridors are thickly carpeted to drown out the noise of someones precious little darling running up and down them.

We had to have a shortstay at a hotel that was part of CDG airport. Our room was honest to god 6 feet above and beside the arrivals access road with cars and buses zooming by. I could have leant out and touched a bus but you could have heard a pin drop in that room. Triple paned windows and a heavy lexan overwindow beyond. We slept like babies.

Customers stay in hotels to sleep. If you can't manage to provide that essential part of the stay, you shouldn't be a hotelier.

Another reason we are using Airbnb and the like more and more.
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Old 07-08-2017, 04:43 PM   #8
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I'll add some whine. We stayed at a hotel in Astoria, Oregon next to the Columbia River where seals barked 24/7. We asked the desk clerk to change rooms - she handed us some ear plugs. So we slept with ear plugs on.
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Old 07-08-2017, 04:51 PM   #9
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Since this seems to be the b*tchin' about hotels thread, let me jump onboard...

It has always bugged me that hotels waste so much money on the damn lobbies that could be better spent on the rooms. Ohh, marble dolphin statues spitting water at each other in the foyer ?!! How about you repaint my damn room instead.

After a recent trip to Europe, I was reminded how much better they are over there at noiseproofing hotel rooms than we are in N. America too. For instance, they use SOLID and HEAVY doors with overlapping jambs to block noise from the corridors. And the corridors are thickly carpeted to drown out the noise of someones precious little darling running up and down them.

We had to have a shortstay at a hotel that was part of CDG airport. Our room was honest to god 6 feet above and beside the arrivals access road with cars and buses zooming by. I could have leant out and touched a bus but you could have heard a pin drop in that room. Triple paned windows and a heavy lexan overwindow beyond. We slept like babies.

Customers stay in hotels to sleep. If you can't manage to provide that essential part of the stay, you shouldn't be a hotelier.

Another reason we are using Airbnb and the like more and more.
You obviously didn't stay in Rome Italy. It was very noisy, cobblestone and such. It was hot so my husband had to open the window, otherwise we wouldn't. Same with Paris. My brother just came back from Paris and said he won't stay there next time he goes. He was near Champs Elysees. I was near La Defense, IIRC.
But if you complain about USA hotels, you haven't seen anything yet.
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Old 07-08-2017, 04:55 PM   #10
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After a recent trip to Europe, I was reminded how much better they are over there at noiseproofing hotel rooms than we are in N. America too. For instance, they use SOLID and HEAVY doors with overlapping jambs to block noise from the corridors. And the corridors are thickly carpeted to drown out the noise of someones precious little darling running up and down them.
Not universally true. The loudest hotel room I've been in for noise from the room next door was in Frankfort. Heard two guys talking all night long as we were trying to sleep for an early flight.
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Old 07-08-2017, 05:18 PM   #11
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After a recent trip to Europe, I was reminded how much better they are over there at noiseproofing hotel rooms than we are in N. America too.
I'm not sure one can generalize based on what must be a relatively small sample.

My personal experience of in-terminal airport hotels includes several on both sides of the Atlantic: the Sheraton at CDG (possibly the hotel you referred to), Sheraton at FRA, Hilton at FCO, Carlton at DUB, Fairmont at YVR, Delta at YYC, Sheraton at YYZ, and noise has not been an issue at any of them. My favourite is the Fairmont at YVR.

I do think that hotels at some distance from the airport terminal may not invest in soundproofing to the same extent.

As for city hotels, my experience has been that they are frequently noisier in Europe. For example, I stayed at the Grand Hotel Minerva in Firenze in 2016. It is a historic hotel and my (very spacious) room had the most wonderful view of the Duomo. But there was no AC and it was warm enough that I needed to open the two tall casement windows. As a result, I heard all the people partying in the piazza late at night, and acquired several mosquito bites. Firenze was still wonderful, though!
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Old 07-08-2017, 07:17 PM   #12
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OK Ill whine too. It was the summer of 2004 , Atlantic City. We had a room at a casino that faced the beach. Windows did NOT open. Im laying down at about 7PM for a nap, Kaboom. Seems to bolster the dying AC scene the hotel decided putting a DJ on the beach with speakers the size of a house would help their bottom line. I called down stairs to the front desk to change my room , they did, to the same side of the building. When I complained they told me oh yeah we dont have any rooms available that arent facing the beach, we had a lot of complaints and room changes. But sir the music goes off at 11 ish. Yeah, homeward bound we went. We didnt return to AC till a new hotel that had more class opened up.
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Old 07-08-2017, 10:31 PM   #13
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OP - Please post pics of the bugs, we want to see them.

Yes, hotels are a crapshoot, getting a loud A/C is almost a given.

Few years ago we stayed at a motel, where you park in front of your room door, and I saw my neighbor 2 doors down, go out to her car and walk back into her room with a 45

Of course I had my 9mm in my room, but I didn't walk around with it in my hand !!
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Old 07-08-2017, 10:41 PM   #14
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That loud air conditioner helps to drown out the freeway noise. Nothing to whine about!
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Old 07-08-2017, 10:42 PM   #15
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OP - Please post pics of the bugs, we want to see them.

Yes, hotels are a crapshoot, getting a loud A/C is almost a given.

Few years ago we stayed at a motel, where you park in front of your room door, and I saw my neighbor 2 doors down, go out to her car and walk back into her room with a 45

Of course I had my 9mm in my room, but I didn't walk around with it in my hand !!
hahahaha, Glad I didnt encounter her while I was in my pink slippers and robe looking for the ice machine.
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Old 07-08-2017, 11:26 PM   #16
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Ah, and here at home it is absolutely quiet and peaceful, no bugs, no strange people walking around outside my door with firearms (I hope), AC is wonderful, healthy snacks in the refrigerator, the most perfect armchair and ottoman for my back, comfie slippers for my feet, my favorite entertainment options for my brain, my sweetie who cares about me living right next door for my heart.... ah, home sweet home! I love it here.
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Old 07-09-2017, 03:09 AM   #17
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Since this seems to be the b*tchin' about hotels thread, let me jump onboard...

It has always bugged me...
BUGGED me? Wasn't that the original whine?? Hahaha!
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Old 07-09-2017, 04:47 AM   #18
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Over the decades of business travel I've stayed in thousands of hotels and experienced too many inconveniences. Fire and floods were the worst. Bugs and lizards were a minor distraction. In many instances the noisy A/C was a benefit to mask the real noise outside.
It really makes me wonder why DW and I just booked a major road trip for the fall. We've been enjoying the time at home and the lake since ER last year.
But I guess the search for adventure overrides the periodic annoyances.
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Old 07-09-2017, 05:42 AM   #19
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I retired from 37 years in the hotel business, thanks for helping me appreciate that decision
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Old 07-09-2017, 06:05 AM   #20
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The AC noise rarely bothers me. If it's keeping me cool (or warm in the winter) it's sort of reassuring. As others have said, it's also a "white noise" that blocks other sounds.

One trick is to see if there's an "always on" setting for the fan. This way you don't get jolted awake when it cycles on and off.
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