Archive for hospitality industry

How to Get the Best Sleep Ever in Your Hotel (and Some of the Best Hotels for Snoozing)

Achieving quality sleep away from home isn’t always easy, even when rest and relaxation are the trip objectives. Noisy temporary neighbors, unfamiliar surroundings, bright street lights, and uncomfortable mattresses can interrupt or prevent a decent night’s sleep. We’ve put together some tips for helping you prepare for a restful night away from home, as well as some places going above and beyond to helping their guests sleep.

Get a Grip on Noise:

One hotel that takes uninterrupted sleeping very seriously is The Fairmont Vancouver Airport. The Fairmont Vancouver may indeed be attached to an airport, but there’s no need to worry about noise from hotel staff or even from passing 747s. Their built-in “Quiet Zone” is on a soundproof floor and was designed to help travelers dealing with long layovers catch up on some shut eye. And during hotel “Quiet Hours”, many operations are put on pause for the Quiet Zone, meaning no hallway noise from staff. Just in case that’s not enough, they supply ear plugs and eye masks to guests, sure to save even the lightest of sleepers.

If your hotel isn’t well sound proofed, sleeping could be more difficult. Noise issues could be compounded for rooms located next to stairwells, elevator entrances, and vending/ice machines — not to mention other guests can make a ruckus at any hour (it’s also worth it to confirm that there is no construction going on at the hotel). Ask to be moved away from noisy parts of the hotel, and if that’s not a possibility, ear plugs or ear buds connected to a phone with an alarm are handy for taming unwanted noise.  

It is really annoying to guests to be in a hotel room close to the source of the noise.  We have been in one and we requested to be transferred to another room right away.

Block Out Light:

The MGM Grand Hotel and Casino features black-out drapes to keep the night lights and the afternoon sun from a good sleep after any period of gaming. The rooms also use wellness lighting in their bathrooms that trigger melatonin to help bring on sleepiness, along with sunrise simulating alarm clocks for gentle, more natural waking.

Planning to sleep in? Not all hotels have blackout drapes. An eye mask can help; they’re inexpensive, and many hotels supply them to guests on request. It can also be helpful to request a room without a street lamp directly outside it or even a one that’s away from the street.

Personalize Your Pillow:

If you’re staying in New York, The Benjamin offers guests a “Pillow Menu.” The hotel also employs a Sleep Concierge, dedicated to helping their guests catch more Zzzs. Members of the team personalize accommodations to guests’ sleeping habits, and while they cannot prescribe sleep medication, the pillow menu should help lull even the most insomnia-beset guests to sleep. They supply luscious pillows from memory foam to a music pillow with tiny speakers that plugs into audio devices.

Bringing along your own pillow can be a comfort when away from home, as can sheets from home. A few years ago, the National Sleep Foundation conducted a survey, and according to their findings a good number of folks consider nice, clean linens to be integral to getting a good night’s rest. The peace of mind that comes from knowing who’s slept your sheets may help aid in peace of mind for easier sleep. Of course, it isn’t always viable to drag linens from home. A pillowcase alone may be enough. Conversely, this is another thing to ask the hotel about during booking: Some hotels keep pillows of varying firmness in stock.  

My mother-in-law takes her own pillow whenever she travels. My daughter has one, too.  It’s the feeling of comfort and security that matters wherever you go.

Tame Unwanted Smells:

Speaking of smell, aromatherapy can be soothing and helpful for inducing sleep. The JW Marriott Los Angeles now offers a Nightly Refresh Program, which is essentially a complimentary turndown service. Service includes Revive Oil from Aromatherapy Associate, and The Dream Bar, which is made with ingredients meant to nurture the body during sleep. On top of that, the Nightly Refresh Program offers a wine sample from Treasury Wine Estates and a house collection of Astor Chocolates. A little wine before bed can help in the relaxation process, but definitely avoid overindulging, as too much alcohol can actually inhibit sleep (it is also probably best to save the chocolates until morning).

a-hotel room

More Comfort Zone Tips:

Sometimes, it helps to call ahead to ask about the little things. However, what one might not think will affect sleep quality can actually make a big difference. There are a few things to check with the hotel before booking, and then just a few more to consider before checking in.

  • Mattresses: While a sumptuously, poofy hotel bed seems like heaven to some, it can impede sleep for others — especially for those susceptible to back or neck pain. Worried about mattress firmness? Call the hotel and ask: Are they hard? Are they soft?
  • Air flow/Temperature Control: The ambient temperature of your sleeping space affects sleep time and quality. A small drop in body temperature induces sleep (warm baths or showers also help facilitate this), so it’s important to check whether room temperature can be regulated adequately, as a room that becomes too warm or too cold is likely to result in waking up. Do the rooms have heaters or air conditioning? For those guests who prefer natural air, the hotel may boast beautiful, scenic views from room windows, but do the windows open?
  • Room location: In hotels with thin walls, rooms near stairwells/elevators, vending machines, ice machines, or lobbies may be subject to more noise than patrons want when trying to get a good night’s snooze. Requesting a room in the middle of a hall, or at the end of a hall that does not lead to a stairwell or exit will likely result in fewer late night interruptions due to traffic from other guests.

This post was posted by Fiona Moriarty on Hipmunk’s Tailwind blog on July 13, 2015

Transforming the Las Vegas Hotel Industry

The Las Vegas Strip has evolved tremendously thanks to the development from major investors in the hotel and resort industry. Passionate investors have seized the opportunity to transform the entire landscape of Las Vegas from a gambling mecca into a sophisticated tourist hot spot. Casinos no longer dominate the scene of the Las Vegas Strip. Tourists can now enjoy plenty of other activities after having some fun on the slot machines, table games and off track betting. Entertainment, dining, nightlife and fun define the new image of Las Vegas thanks to some wealthy individuals that have invested a significant amount of money into “Sin City.” Stephen Wynn is an example of one of the major developers that have rebuilt the Las Vegas Strip with personal investments and brilliant ideas.

For example, it’s tough to imagine that golf courses would remain on the Las Vegas strip where ambling is rampant. These days, it is still possible to walk out of a casino and enjoy a game of golf that is only steps away from slot machines and card games. The interior of major hotels and resorts in Las Vegas have also been transformed with a new theme that goes beyond gambling. For example, lavish decorations that are inspired by classical themes now decorate the hallways and main lobbies of major high rising hotels. Some wealthy hotel investors even display their own personal art collections for all guests to appreciate and enjoy. Renaissance paintings and sculptures now add aesthetic appeal to hotels that have been traditionally known for their gambling themes.

Another brilliant idea for enhancing high rising hotels in Las Vegas involves opening observation decks. Located on rooftops or some of the upper level decks in hotels, observation areas offer panoramic views of the entire city of Las Vegas. Such views surely come with an entrance fee that is charged even for hotel guests. Tourists can’t resist the opportunity to enjoy a night scene of the Las Vegas skyline. Similarly, rooftop dining is another attractive concept that is being considered by management companies of major hotels and resorts in “Sin City.”

hotel venetian

Las Vegas has become a major entertainment hub on the west coast thanks to the great vision of major investors in the hospitality industry. Many hotels have their own venues that are dedicated to providing live entertainment featuring music, laughter and joy for the audience. Some of the nation’s funniest comedians and best magicians are often based in the hotels of Las Vegas when they are not on national tours.

The liquor industry has also transformed the Las Vegas strip. Hotel management companies have acquired liquor licenses that make it possible to sell some of the world’s finest spirits to hotel guests. French red wines and Cognacs can be exclusively enjoyed by hotel guests at onsite bars that have contemporary and chic settings. Fine dining has also been incorporated into the overall experience of any major hotel and casino in Las Vegas. To add more excitement to Las Vegas, some hotel managers and investors often invite film producers and other media companies to come over and shoot some scenes. Tourists often get the chance to be featured in some clips for mainstream movies or other cool multimedia productions that are shown on TV and internet outlets such as social media.

This is a guest post.