There are so many hotels and resorts out there and more are opening every year. From small boutique to 5-star luxury chains, high-touch luxury to all-inclusive resorts, there are countless factors to consider when choosing a hotel. Where you stay can make or break your trip, so you don’t want to make a rash decision. Brownell Travel Advisors inspect hotels around the world and know what type of hotel is ideal for families, honeymoons, solo travelers, and everything in between. We got tips from these pros for how to choose the perfect hotel.
Size of Room
Not all hotel rooms are created equal, especially if it’s a historical hotel in an 18th century building. A good sized room starts at around 400 square feet (or about 37 square meters). The definition of a “good sized” room also depends on which continent you’re on! Hotel rooms in Europe are notoriously smaller than other destinations.
Some hotel bathrooms are the size of a small apartment. Others feel crowded with one person in them. When choosing a hotel, remember to ask about the bathroom size. Do you want a separate shower and bathtub? Dual vanities?
Hotels are really taking style to the next level in recent years. Forget feeling like you could be anywhere in the world in a cookie-cutter hotel room as many are incorporating a sense of place into their designs. Some hotels have a very traditional feel — think Louis XV gilded furniture in Paris or Murano glass chandeliers in Venice. Others are all about chic, modern looks with very high design. Sharp lines, crisp whites, and contrasting colors.
Hotels in the United States have to follow strict ADA requirements (Americans with Disabilities Act), but that is not the case for the rest of the world. Let your travel advisor know about any mobility issues you have, even if they don’t seem like a big deal. Small elevators (or no elevators), cobblestones, showers with a big step up, or a room located on the far end of a building could end up being a much bigger factor than you realize.
There are charming 12-room, family-owned properties, huge 300+ room resorts, and everything in between. Each size has its own pros and cons. A smaller, boutique property can have more personalized service and feel like you are staying in someone’s home. However, due to the size it may not offer the facilities of a large property like a big spa or fitness center. A larger hotel, especially the five-star properties, will have all the bells and whistles. When you get into the mega, conference-center hotels, you can often find a better rate but lose the personalized touches. If you’re staying in a hotel like that, be sure to check that there is not a big event happening at the hotel so you’re not a leisure traveler in a sea of business conference attendees.
Is the view important to you? Consider how much time you want to spend in your room and if it is worth it to pay for a top view as you choose a hotel. Some clients don’t mind paying more to enjoy a sunset over the Caribbean from their private balcony, while others would rather save money on the room and spend more time on the beach.
Location is everything, especially in a city property. A travel advisor that is helping you book dinner reservations, activities, and tours is key in finding a hotel in the best location within your budget.
Do you need babysitting services, a 24/7 gym, a swimming pool, or a full-service spa? Understand what the hotel offers as you compare properties to make sure you’re comparing apples to apples.
Beyond this list, let your travel advisor know about your personal preferences, favorite hotels (and least favorite), and any other information that can help them match you with the perfect hotel. Our goal is to create the most personalized, incredible travel experience, and finding the best hotel for you is a key element.
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