We have been staying in hotels or spas since the Greco Roman era; we have a pragmatic need for these facilities, physicians sent patients to these places to recuperate from illnesses, businesses send their representatives to these places to rest in between work appointments. The arduousness of travel, all the way up to the 1700’s made the idea of traveling for pleasure a rarity. Taking six days to get from Boston to New York via oxen wouldn’t be something I would sign up for!
So now that travel is less of an obstacle, our desire for a hotel ‘room’ is like hunting for the Holy Grail! There is a palpable excitement to landing a great room, we have a checklist in our head, bed, view, aesthetics, amenities, moving the pros and cons of a mental abacus to decide whether we are thrilled or dealt a bum deal. This pursuit has culminated from acquiring a great room to expanding into a generous suite.
How many times have we seen our friends snapping enthusiastically, videos of their hotel suites? The spacious, beautiful home away from home creates genuine excitement. For many it is a lifetime of excitement, Coco Chanel lived in the Ritz Hotel, in Paris for over thirty years of her life. Staying there over fashion week this year after their four-year renovation was something I will never forget. Helmut Newton lived and literally died at the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles.
The question is why? Well I think when you have the luxury, space and flexibility created by a suite, the décor, the options, the ability to entertain comfortably, to make the space your own, feeds into our modern day desire to feel at home when we are far from it.
So the real issue is HOW do you make the Suite Life happen, firstly, ask! Many times Hotels will have unused suites available for customer service upgrades, for last minute VIP’s showing up. Ask and see if they are amenable. Secondly, membership reward programs are worth their weight in uranium! Personally, I use American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts who never cease to disappoint and will correct any issue before you have time to process it. I also have Chase Sapphire Reserve, which has very similar travel benefits including a $300 a year travel credit they apply to your hotels and flights without you having to do anything. Check your credit cards and what they offer, you will often be surprised. I wasn’t aware of my travel benefits with the Sapphire Reserve until I looked at my account online. Always read what benefits your cards have to offer, especially before you travel as you might be in for a pleasant surprise!
My biggest encouragement is to not just “go along” with the hotel system, if you don’t like something speak up, give them an opportunity to make your stay a great one. The suite life is out there for you, go get it! My motto in life is you never get what you don’t ask for! I live and swear by it.