9 Tips for Selecting the Best Hotel at a Tourist Place

In a tourist place, there are hundreds of hotels available for travelers. To select a hotel in the city for your travel, it is important for you to identify what you actually need from it. The needs may vary from individual to Individual and from family to family.

The below-given tips will make your search for best hotels and resorts easy and productive. It will save you time and also reduce frustration.

1. The first work you will do is to filter and sort hotels on the basis of facilities they provide and the budget you can afford. First of all, put in the name of the city and the date on which you need to book a hotel.

2. After filtering date and locations wise, now you can sort resorts amenity wise. There are hotels which offer free WiFi services, parking and swimming facilities to guests. I for myself will always select a hotel offering these amenities.

3. If you are traveling along with your family then you can look for a family hotel in the city and travel with a Girlfriend or wife, then you can look for a “romantic” type of hotel.

4. A good hotel is one that is located close to the airport and has decent road and rail links. Although these resorts mention these details in their description, it is not possible for a traveler to read the description of each hotel.

5. There are some hotels booking sites that show hotels on a single map. You can use their map to find a hotel that meets your travel requirements.

6. Some people intentionally look for a hotel that offers its guests free breakfast while as others don’t consider free breakfast as that much important. Similarly, some homestay have free WI-Fi service for guests. If you really need internet then only makes it a deciding factor.

7. These days every hotel has its own website where they make announcements and update their guests about any new development. People post their reviews directly on their website. Read those reviews and what people think about the hotel.

8. Price is the deciding factor when it comes to making a hotel booking for an average person. An average income person may not be able to afford a costly hotel. Booking engines sort hotels price wise. Some resorts offer discounts to their guests. So check out that which hotel in the city is offering discounts on bookings.

9. The environment of a hotel should be soothing and pleasant to have a peaceful stay during your travel. A good and healthy environment will ensure your well-being. There are a number of green and best hotels and resorts, visit their websites and select an Eco-friendly hotel for your travel.

Conclusion

When it comes to select a hotel, always focus on what matters to you most and don’t pay heed to other matters. That will only waste your time. Filtering out the hotels that meet your requirements is an ideal way to identify best hotels.

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Boutique Hotels

The lodging industry is one of the oldest businesses to exist in this world. It has been around ever since people started traveling from one place to the other for trade and other purposes. What began as the need of the hour (rest and shelter during long journeys) soon turned into an industry that offered comfort, convenience, even luxury, to their boarders. For example, The Greeks built thermal baths that allowed their guests to rest and recuperate. Romans constructed palatial mansions for travelers, while Caravanserais along the famous Silk Road from Turkey to China offered shelter not just for men but also their beasts.

In the 21st century, hotels have evolved into a flourishing business that has become an inseparable part of the travel industry. The styles range from flamboyant properties to bare-bone youth hostels, and all-inclusive honeymoon resorts to quaint country inns.

However, as competition grew and hotels started offering standard services across the chain, there was need for something innovative in the market. People, tired of impersonal services, started moving towards smaller hotels that offered personalized attention and unique experiences.

And thus was born the darling of the hospitality industry – boutique hotels. Today, they are the most sought after stay option for leisure travelers and the ultimate name in exclusivity. More and more people are choosing to stay in boutique hotels, because they’re almost always guaranteed to have a good time and get great value for their money

Given the popularity they enjoy, it’s worthwhile taking a peek into the fascinating history of boutique hotels and trace their evolution over time.

History of Boutique Hotels

The earliest boutique hotels appeared in the early 1980s, the first two of them being The Blakes Hotel in South Kensington, London, and the Bedford in Union Square, San Francisco. The term ’boutique hotel’, though, appeared much later in 1984, coined by Steve Rubell. He compared his own establishment, Morgans Hotel, to a small boutique, obviously wishing to highlight its exclusivity and set it apart from other hotels that were cropping up everywhere, much like the monolithic department stores.

This is not to say that boutique hotels are a modern invention. There are plenty of documented instances of similar lodging experiences dating back to the 13th century when staging posts were set up for travelers in Mongolia and China.

Here are a few more examples of one-of-a-kind boutique hotels that were popular back in the days:

  • In 1705, César Ritz opened a boutique hotel at Place Vendôme, which earned him high praise from King Edward VII who called him “king of hoteliers and hotelier to kings”.
  • In 1822, Venitian artist Giuseppe Rubino transformed an old palace into a gorgeous hotel and called it “il Rubino”.
  • In 1880, the Sagamore Hotel on Lake George (in the state of New York) became the first to provide electricity in each of its guest rooms, creating no small stir among visitors in those times.
  • In 1900, Edouard Niiermans, known as the ‘architect of palaces’ transformed Emperor Napoléon III’s summer residence – Villa “Eugenie – into a beautiful and niche hotel.
  • In 1919, Barcelona inaugurated a stylish hotel that was equipped with hot and cold water in its bathrooms.

As you can see, there have been numerous occasions throughout the history of the lodging industry when hoteliers applied creativity and offered top-notch services to stay ahead of the competition and offer something extraordinary to their visitors.

Boutique Hotel of the 21st Century – Characteristics that Set It Apart

Today, the term ’boutique hotel’ is used to describe small establishments with around 150 rooms. They are privately owned, or part of a small group of hotels, and are best known for iconic, memorable and, at times, eccentric design themes. The concept of boutique hotels became a trend after hotelier Ian Schrager and French designer Philippe Starck used unique designs to build their hotels. And now, it has become a flourishing industry of its own, complete with unique traits and qualities.

Here’s looking at some of the more important ones.

Size Does Matter

Boutique hotels are generally considered small, but they’re not in the same category as Bed and Breakfast hotels or homestays that have less than 10 rooms. Boutique hotels can have up to 150 rooms, which does make it appear smaller when you compare it to most chain hotels.

However, it is this intimate scale that helps create a home-like ambiance with peace and privacy aplenty. These cozy properties often have a communal “living space” where the guests can sit and interact with each other.

Personality Speaks Volumes

Since boutique hotels are independently owned and not affiliated to any big chain, they are a brand in themselves. They have a distinctive vibe to them that sets them apart from the others. It is their unique personality and absence of cookie cutter solutions that guests find refreshing, thereby drawing more and more people towards boutique hotels.

Design by Desire

Boutique hotels are known for their intriguing interiors, which are very often created by leading designers and architects. Generally speaking, these niche hotels tend to maintain an upmarket look, combining historic elegance with chic details. The decor conveys a progressively forward style and the overall design could range from contemporary and quaint, to homely and artistic. Each guest room is decorated individually, complete with exclusive amenities and upscale linen.

It’s All in the Charm

You know how you walk into a big hotel, but nothing really spectacular or interesting jumps out at you? Boutique hotels will have none of that and the first thing that grabs your attention is their eccentric personality. They are funky, trendy, and offbeat. For instance, the Hotel Monaco in Washington D.C. will bring a goldfish in a bowl to your room, if you don’t have a pet of your own.

Lovely Location

While there aren’t any hard and fast rules about where a boutique hotel should be situated, it’s no coincidence that the best of them have a great location going for them. When designing boutique hotels, most hoteliers choose the hippest and most happening places to set them in. You may even find them in high-end neighborhoods, removed from the hustle and bustle, but still close to the attractions and highlights of the city. Yet another popular choice for boutique hotels would be in areas that are far removed from the city, in the lap of nature and surrounded by lush greenery.

Superb Service

One of the most distinguishing features of boutique hotels is the highly personalized and exclusive services they extend to their guests. The staff is courteous and friendly and is likely to know your name from day one. The hotel provides bespoke luxury amenities, like an extensive pillow menu, custom toiletries, and an array of relaxing spa services. A sumptuous spread of food and drinks menu is also a signature part of a boutique hotel. All these services combined create a top notch and singular experience for the guests.

Delectable Dining Options

Another feature that makes boutique hotels stand apart from other hotels is their significant focus on creating extraordinary restaurants and bars, which are modish and trendy. These hotels make a great reputation for themselves, which is independent of the conventional star ratings. Thanks to their appeal, they’re able to draw crowds not just locally, but also globally.

As you can see, there are a number of reasons why boutique hotels are fast gaining popularity among travelers, who are demanding more than comfort and convenience from their stay options. They want to be surprised, they want to experience something new, something completely different from what the run-of-the-mill hotels offer. In fact, these days, if you’re not staying at a boutique hotel, you’re considered unfashionable.

I don’t mean to imply in any way that hotels are boring or uninspiring. There are excellent hotels all over the world offering out-of-the-world service to their guests. However, boutique hotels break the traditional mold and refuse to be boxed in by regular standards. Offering visitors style, distinction, intimacy, and warmth, they leave guest with an experience they can cherish forever. And isn’t that what hotels set out to do in the first place?

Looking for a Cozy Holiday Stay? Manali Cottages Are The Perfect Choice

Manali is among the most popular hill stations of India and I have done nothing but appreciate its beauty and contrasts. It has a combination of relaxing and wild as it has something for every kind of traveler. This magical town has become a very popular spot for travelers. Thousands flock here to enjoy the many things it has to offer. The amazing thing about Manali is that even with the increased numbers of visitors it has always managed to handle them in terms of accommodation.

The options vary from Homestays to villas, apartments to guesthouses. The cottages here are some of the best I have experienced. They are simply charming and designed to offer nothing short of the best during the holidays. Most of the cottages I have been to have beautiful backyards for relaxing and calming down and balconies that offer magnificent views of the Himalayas. From the comfort of your cottage you can enjoy splendid views, enjoy the night sky and then wake up to uplifting bird chirps and beautiful sunrises. I select my cottage according to the kind of experience I want to enjoy during my stay.

Cottages in Manali come in different sizes ranging from 2 bedrooms to some as big as 8 bedrooms. I love checking into the cozy 2 bedroom cottage when looking to spend an intimate holiday, whereas the larger ones come in handy when traveling with a bunch of friends or family. Selecting the appropriate size means that everyone gets to enjoy some privacy during the vacation and everyone is happy at the end of the day.

Apart from being available in different sizes to meet different holiday preferences, I love the fact that the cottages here are well distributed throughout the city. There are even cottages near popular location of Manali like Central Bus Depot and Kanyal Road. Considering that I always have a list of things and places I wish to experience during my stay here, I always go for cottages that are in close proximity to these areas for convenience.

When packing for a holiday I consider the things that I will need like my hairdryer and other personal effects. Luckily the Manali cottages are well equipped with amenities any holidaymaker would need. I do not need to carry almost everything from just so as to enjoy my stay in the town. The sufficient providence also means that I spend less trying to put my stay together. The cottages have modern amenities offering comfortable, convenient stay every time.

The rates are of course a major consideration. Having traveled for a considerable length of time, I am now well aware that the rates largely depend on the size of the facility, the amenities provided for, and the length of my stay. With so many different cottages scattered all over Manali, it is very easy to find something affordable yet something that I am bound to enjoy throughout my vacation.

5 Solo Travel Tips – How to Pay Less for Luxury Lodging

For tours, “single supplements” are generally added over the per person rate for pairs and couples. Lodging is less clear. In most of the world, prices are a so-called “rack rate” or by the rooms based on double accommodations. As the number of solo travelers has increased, travel providers have added some better pricing options. While we all work to build a more level playing field, here are our 5 updated tips for luxury lodging at better prices.

1. Modify your searches for booking engines. Manually convert “one room” to “one adult”. In Europe, the good news is that such solo prices for lodging are common. Once you change from 2 to 1 adult, prices may drop 40%.

2. For short trips, vacation mid-week. When everyone else is back-to-school or back to work, you can take advantage of reduced traffic discounts.

3. Consider ways to save on meals. I found a great room rate at a 5-star Nordic hotel. However, I skipped the $110 dollar dinner on-site for a trip to a local deli for about $10.

4. Check out season deals. These are most common at ski resorts. The fabled Lodge at Sun Valley (subject of a classic film) has had really reduced rates just prior to the Dec. 22 holiday influx.

5. Don’t bypass the famous names assuming they are too costly. One great such option is the 5-star Grand Hotel in Stockholm, Sweden. They now offer a solo priced room. (Always check the size to see if it is a standard/double room or a smaller single room.)

Look for our updated solo travel tips so that your next trip will be your best.

What You Need To Know Before Looking For A Business Hotel

Whether you are traveling for business or are looking for a place to host a professional conference, finding the right business hotel can be tricky. With a lot at stake, you want to be certain you contract with a professional, competent and reputable hotel. Fortunately, there are some tell-tale signs of what constitutes stellar accommodations. Take a look at the following guide to help you locate the right hotel for your needs:

Seek out experienced staff

Hosting a business meeting in a hotel setting requires the employment of a competent and professional staff. From the concierge to the manager, to the chef, it all matters, as these people can make or break your event. With quality employees, you can rest assured that they will fill in the gaps in which you may lack experience. From large matters like seating arrangements and reservation help to technological assistance with PowerPoint and surround sound, to the small matters of having refreshments, it is important that your event run smoothly. And an experienced staff at a business hotel can make that happen.

If you are simply searching for accommodations while on a business trip, then the staff still matters. With a top-notch concierge, you can relax while the employees manage your logistical needs. It is stressful enough staying away from home. An unprofessional and rude staff can only add to that stress.

Don’t ignore the amenities

Most people believe it is unnecessary to consider any luxury item at a business hotel when traveling. This is a tragic belief! Just because you are tending to work-related matters does not mean you should not enjoy your stay. In fact, when working, luxury should be a priority. A good swimming pool and/or workout gym can help relieve stress and help you maintain your mental and physical sanity, which is an ever-growing need for many professionals. If you are unsure as to what amenities the hotel offers, you should call the front desk or concierge. And do not be afraid to ask.

If you are hosting a business event, this may be even more important, with many employees traveling to your conference. Choosing respectable accommodations indicates an adherence to quality and luxury and reflects well on your company.

Track online promotions

Many hotels and inns offer some fantastic deals, especially for the frequent traveler. In order to take advantage of these deals, you should never neglect your online searches. Signing up to be added to an email list is a terrific way to keep in touch and monitor periodic deals. And again, when in doubt, call the hotel personally and inquire after any specials they may offer.

Try not to neglect the location

While you may not always have a say over which location you are to travel, a business hotel should still be in a beautiful setting, if possible. This is especially true for those companies hosting work conferences. Find a unique town by looking at the tourist attractions. With beautiful scenery, unique restaurants and fun shopping excursions, you can transition your conference to one many people choose to frequent for years to come.

Why Should You Always Try and Stay in a Five Star Hotel?

Let’s be honest, not everyone can afford five star, which is why so many people book into three and four star hotels. But before you start shopping around and book the first affordable hotel you find, there are a few things you should really know about.

The first thing is that every country has their own hotel rating system, which means a five star in London is not necessarily the same as a five star hotel in Australia or the United States. Every country has it’s own rating system, which could result in some confusion. In the United Kingdom stars are awarded on facilities, service and customer service, In France they focus on the quality of the rooms and in Italy they focus on cleanliness. Which means knowing the star rating system in the UK can help you look for hotels in other countries offering the same facilities, services and customer service, even if they are not awarded with five stars.

In the United Kingdom, facilities and services are taken very seriously and any hotel which is lucky enough to be awarded a five star status, must provide guests with exploratory facilities and services. They must also have experienced, qualified and excellent staff who focus on providing guests with the highest level of customer service, working to exceptionally high quality standards at all times.

The hotel should provide the finest level of cleanliness, it should be well-maintained and offer the delivery of any services to the highest of standards. In most instances a five star hotel will provide you with some benefits such as a fitness center and on-site wellness center, which should provide you with a range of quality treatments provided by qualities therapists. In addition to this, the hotel should also provide you with a twenty our hour reception desk for added convenience.

It is always advisable when visiting a new city or country, to choose a five star hotel with a concierge service. The concierge has a wealth of local knowledge and experience. They can make recommendations and suggestions on what to see and do, they will book a taxi for you or assist you with public transport. They can also make theater bookings on your behalf or make dinner reservations at a top hotel, saving you time and energy and reducing what you need to do when on holiday.

Further, they should provide a butler service. If you have hired a suite and have guests coming to visit you for an evening meal, then a butler could be the ideal way to spend the evening, enabling them to handle the dinner, serve the meal and clear the plates, while keeping glasses filled.

Most five star hotels will have a choice of public areas. They should have a full on-site restaurant that serves evening meals and maybe even breakfasts, they should also have a lounge bar or relaxed area where you can sit and chill out, maybe with a coffee or dinner cocktail, light snacks should be served here during the day. In addition to this, they should also provide you with twenty four hour room service to quality as five star.

Finding a Hotel Tonight Is Easier Than You Think

Finding a hotel tonight, or any night for that matter, is much easier than you think. In fact, the travel industries are such that the consumer is no longer working on the whim of an outside agent working in semi-secrecy. Consumer protection progress in the industry, as well as streamlined planning tools, have made it so that anyone can jump online & find what they need.

In this case, we’re focusing on the ease with which someone can plan a stay at a hotel as soon as tonight. Perhaps the single greatest reason that planning a quick hotel stay has become so simple is the advent of the World Wide Web – the Internet. The Internet has allowed us to have a wealth of information at our fingertips for a few decades now, and with that knowledge comes some serious power. For example, there was once a time when knowing what hotels were nearby was the only real way you could choose a hotel. You subsequently had to look them up in the phone book (barring you didn’t make a mistake in their name), and you really had to hope that there was something available at the very last-minute. The number of variables was through the roof, and in many ways, consumers were operating at the discretion of the hotels.

This would be enough to convince even a hardened traveler to cry, “Uncle”, but the real struggle to book a room came when you had to travel out-of-town. Imagine being on a road you’re following on a physical map, and inevitably you’d end up somewhere whose geography you didn’t know, and you certainly didn’t know of any hotels, motels, or motorways you could bank on for a last-minute room. Today, however, you can know your way around town by way of your phone’s Internet access.

Perhaps the other most significant reason for being able to book a hotel room with ease comes by way of competition in the industry. There was once a time when you had a limited amount of choices for hotel stays. Regardless of whether you were traveling & moving about due to vacation or work, you were in a position where your lodging money went one of only a couple of places. Nowadays, you’re able to do quick online searches as to the quality (star rating) of you proposed lodging, amenities, as well as proximity to & involvement with your destination. Moreover, there are a number of hotels vying for your business, which means they are willing to work with prospective customers on pricing & flexible booking simply because they want your booking in a major way. With so much choice & with an added boost in saving on your booking, you as the consumer are the big winner.

When it comes to finding a hotel room tonight, you should set your mind at ease. A little common sense, some quick wit with online searches, and a comfort in knowing that you as the customer have some serious booking power should be your guides to hotel booking nirvana.