Notices

Best rooms in a particular hotel

Old Jan 24th, 2014, 06:11 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 28
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Best rooms in a particular hotel

Perhaps a bit of a long shot but...

We are booking hotels for our September anniversary trip. I just read a comment somewhere that suggested that one of the drawbacks of an early booking is that we may get thrown a room that isn't that great (reserving the better rooms for later).

I have no idea if this is accurate but it got me thinking. I can imagine some web site somewhere that specializes in documenting feedback from folks about particular rooms. I know I can contact the hotels directly and ask for their "best rooms" (for the type of room we have) but it's all pretty subjective and I'm just curious if there are tricks-of-the-trade for narrowing down the best rooms at a hotel, based on feedback. Alternatively, even knowing something objective about a room ("overlooks a quiet street") would be a starting point.

BTW, I seem to recall a similar service for the selection of the best seats on flights. That's what reminded me of this.

Thanks.

Mark
MarkWill is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 06:24 AM
  #2  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 28
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Funny how that worked I looked for something like this, found nothing, posted here - then found that TripAdvisor has just this feature

Which is nice....

Mark
MarkWill is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 06:54 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Yes, TripAdvisor started offering Room Tips, but the minute someone throws a room number out on the internet that room will never be available. And if you're trying to book a specific popular room in high season, with less than a year before your dates, well, good luck.

Many hotels in Italy have gotten wise: they are now pricing their "better" rooms in higher price categories and giving them a special name. So, if you truly want that special room, you'll pay a premium for it, if it's still available.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 08:38 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 7,235
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I can't imagine why a hotel would reserve the better rooms for later. What would it avail them?
bvlenci is online now  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 08:53 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Repeat customers don't always book a year or more in advance. Much like better restaurants, some boutique hotels will "hold" a better room for repeat customers. But you need to be a repeat customer with a favorite room preference in order to have any knowledge of this.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 11:51 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 614
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You can always email the hotel with specific request, i.e. quiet room in the back.
Many hotels have room categories and you pay accordingly. Better rooms cost more.
Goldens is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 01:38 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 7,235
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
How would the hotel know when or if the valued customer was thinking of returning? If the client had mentioned a specific date, then the room is really tentatively reserved and not being held off the market in the sense implied by MarkWill.

I'm sure that in the stratospheric range, there are rooms (or suites) that would be available only to a select few, but ordinary mortals aren't really going to be candidates for these rooms, whether they book early or late.
bvlenci is online now  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 02:10 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 985
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
1. Don't book through a wholesaler (any online travel agency such as expedia, priceline, etc). The wholesaler is paying a NET discounted rate to the hotel, and you'll be put in the least desirable, "last sell" rooms in the house.

2. Email the general manager of the hotel, tell him/her of your interest in staying at their property, and ask his/her suggestion as to the best rooms to book … and his/her assistance in blocking you in one of those room.

3. For luxury hotels, booking through a TA who has good connections with that hotel will also help. The TA can contact her/his rep, ask that your stay be VIP'ed, and ask that you be prioritized for an upgrade. You'll still pay the regular room rate but get the advocacy of a professional (and possibly additional amenities that add value to your stay).
travelhorizons is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 02:12 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
"How would the hotel know when or if the valued customer was thinking of returning?"

I believe the term is called communication. An ordinary customer will never know when a room is being "held." Many hotels will simply tell first-time customers that they can't guarantee specific rooms.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 03:51 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 7,235
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
If there has been a communication, I would consider the room reserved, which is not the same thing as being "withheld".
bvlenci is online now  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 04:05 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 7,235
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I disagree that one should never reserve a room through a booking site. I generally check the booking sites, then the hotel's web site, but I have almost always ended up booking with the booking sites. I like being able to keep all of my reservations together in the same place, where I can manage them. Last year I had to cancel a holiday in Scotland and northern England, involving six separate hotels. I had reserved five of them using booking.com and was able to cancel all the reservations in thirty seconds using their "manage my bookings" page.

Using one of these sites doesn't preclude communicating with the hotel by phone or email to make special requests, or to inform them of a late arrival.

I usually, but not always, find better, or at least equal, prices on the booking sites. As long as I have a satisfactory room, I don't really care if there might be another room in the hotel that's even better.

When attending academic conferences in the US, I have sometimes found rooms at the conference hotel on a booking site at a better price than the special discounted conference price on the hotel's web site.
bvlenci is online now  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 04:41 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,969
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
"Best" in anything with many characteristics, such as a hotel room, is an ambiguous term. Even if one postulates that the hotel offers the "best" room, it may not necessarily match what one had in mind using one's yardstick.

Best can be - room size, the view, accessibility, decor, noise, room amenities, etc. A given room might excel in one area and calls it the best room, but it may be in the area that does not matter to a specific individual.

I was give an upgrade in Greece. But I need to choose between an upgrade in space or upgrade in view. Which was the best room? Depends on individuals. Hotels don't know that.

I got the biggest room with a view at an inn in Siena. Was it the best? May be, but that was because I was willing to climb up a long narrow staircase to my bedroom from the room entrance. If I were mobility challenged, it would have been the worst room.

In my experience, I had more problems trying to get a room I wanted by booking late. I always ask for a specific characteristic of the room I want. If it is hotel with a bar or a restaurant at the penthouse, I certainly would ask for a room far away from the elevator noise. If I were traveling with my parents, the best rooms for that trip would be near the elevator.

Even at small inns that let you book a specific room, there is always a chance of last minutes "plumbing" problem. I may be cynical, but I sometimes wonder if the excuse might be used to vacate the room I booked because someone more desirable came around and wanted the room instead.
greg is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 06:11 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
"If there has been a communication"

A single piece of communication won't buy you much. Many hotels know how to treat their best customers. And that treatment is rarely discussed openly.

""Best" in anything with many characteristics, such as a hotel room, is an ambiguous term."

It is ambiguous until you experience it for yourself. The internet has paved the way for complete strangers to read about other people and their lucky experiences. Also, there's no point in comparing the "best" of a 700-room resort on Maui to a 13-room villa on Lake Garda. Smaller boutiques tend to have less in the "best" classification, obviously.

Not every hotel charges more money for their "best" rooms. I know a boutique property in Italy that offers all its doubles at the same price. The four doubles with terraces are the most popular, because return visitors know which room to request. But if you don't know which two face the lake, and if you didn't know which room to request, you could easily find yourself in a standard double (with no terrace) for exactly the same price.

I know a popular, five-star, 700-room property in Florida that offers only two rooms that feature 120-sq-ft terraces. Only one of those terraces has an east-to-west view, offering sunrise (beachfront) to sunset visuals. There is no way to know this special room exists without knowing someone who knows about it.

There definitely is a "best" in many accommodations. And the internet occasionally reveals some secrets.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 06:19 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 67
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
most hotels never promise a room number or floor. only the specified type.
gigi69 is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 06:35 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 36,572
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
"best" is subjective, at the very least and I have had one experience in which we were upgraded to a supposed "best" room which happened to be a two-bedroom, two-bath suite with a living and a dining room.

I would never, ever want that room again. It was like a million miles from the nearest elevator and a couple of other "why would anyone want to be here?" things.

So, obviously a lot depends on matter of opinion.

It certainly never hurts to communicate directly with an establishment IMO bit that communication needs to be directed to somebody who can actually do something to ensure you get what you want.

Sometimes hard to know what a best room is unless you've stayed in the place.

And BTW, have you considered the notion of asking for a room change if you get somewhere and don't like the accommodation? Sometimes that actually works. Harder to say "no" to a person standing in front of you than it is to type the same word in an e-mail.
Dukey1 is offline  
Old Jan 24th, 2014, 08:33 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 26,390
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It's funny about that elevator thing.

There was a review on Tripadvisor that I've never forgotten. It just goes to show one person's "great room" is another's "pit."

A man complained that the hotel he was shoved down a hall far away from the elevator (all because of his race).

In the same hotel, I was put near the elevator and would have loved to change rooms with that guy. I could hear people trampling down the hall until quite late at night. That was my only complaint about the place. I would have gladly changed rooms. Even if the elevator came in handy in the morning but I don't mind walking.
LSky is offline  
Old Jan 25th, 2014, 02:02 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 7,235
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Ah, Gigi, to you and me the hotels wouldn't promise a specific room. But if we were snobs from New York, all doors would be opened to us.
bvlenci is online now  
Old Jan 25th, 2014, 04:47 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 2,893
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
bvlenci, your insecurity is showing.
NYCFoodSnob is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
chillout
Europe
22
Sep 4th, 2011 10:09 PM
fujifan
Europe
12
Aug 8th, 2009 12:00 PM
cablegirl
United States
7
Feb 10th, 2004 10:50 PM
TwoCents
United States
7
Jun 19th, 2003 02:29 PM
just wondering
Europe
6
Oct 1st, 2002 08:51 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO