I was thinking about hotel stays in the past as I plan ahead for the coming year and remembered one truly bizarre hotel stay/experience. I wondered if others would share their incredible (in the full sense of the word) stories? Ghosts? Massive bedbug infestations? Anything that is not improper!
Here's mine. I went to a conference in New Orleans in the late 1990s. I had a prepaid reservation at a major hotel chain (which will be unnamed, but was not Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, or SPG). When I arrived at 4pm (an hour after their official time for check-in) the front desk was overwhelmed and said they couldn't assign anyone rooms yet. So I went and had a couple of glasses of wine and returned at 5pm. No rooms. I had dinner and returned at 7pm. They said it would take another hour, which it did. Then they told me they didn't have a normal room, but only a conference room with a pullout bed. The largest piece of furniture in the room was a huge banquet table in the center surrounded by enough chairs to host most board meetings. For a bed, I had a pull open couch!
I had to give a paper early in the morning, so I only laid out the minimal amount of clothing and makeup on top of my suitcase. The first unpleasant surprise came when I woke up after a few hours to find there were no towels or toilet paper in the bathroom. I had to get dressed again and wait a half hour for housekeeping to deliver the basics.
Finally asleep again I was abruptly woken up past midnight when a naked man burst into my room through the adjoining room door (HINT: always check the lock on the adjoining room when you get to your room). Fortunately it was not a criminal attack but a man who walked through the wrong door to go to the bathroom. My screams sent him fleeing back into his room. Of course, it is entirely possible he actually was looking for my bathroom if his was as ill-supplied as mine.
I got about three total hours sleep before having to get up and after giving my paper the next day, I changed my flight and flew home early. I love New Orleans but am delighted that that particular hotel is no longer a part of the chain I did not mention. I have never stayed at that hotel chain again.
So tell me some stories!
Overseas Bizarre Hotel Tales:
Several times I stayed in the US Embassy Guest House (actually a small hotel) situated along the Rhine in the Bonn/Bad Godesberg Area of West Germany. (before the wall came down).
Once, during the troubles with the Red Brigades and the Bader Mein Hof gang, security was exceptionally tight. I was assigned a driver and armored limo. Hans, my driver, was a German national and very proud of being in charge of my safety if only for a few days. When I went to the German Chancellory or other official locations he drove and followed me in to each office, then bowed out. He followed me to dinner meetings as well. One restaurant is called Rolands Bogen (still there) and requires super human skill to drive up a steep street but Hans managed it very well.
Each night he'd park at the front entrance of the Guest House on the curved road and sit there all night. I never locked my door at the Guest House since Hans was my security escort, even inspecting my laundry when it came back from the cleaners to ensure that it was not tampered with. I also wanted him to get in faster if I needed him, and a locked door would slow him down for a few seconds.
I went for stroll along the Rhine my last day there and he drove behind me in the armored car, frightening birds and other walkers as well. I always thought that this was the most secure (and yet not that appealing) hotel stay of my life.
Hans smiled only once, when we left me in the care of the Lufthansa agent at Bonn/Cologne airport as I departed for the states.
could not resist this! I was traveling out of the country and upon coming home, I logged on to my Marriott Account info. Low and behold, while out of the country I somehow managed to get points for a Marriott stay at a hotel about 120 miles from home. After a few days of detective work I discovered that my husband (now my ex-husband) had take a "friend" to the big city and used my name/account to get an upgraded room. Although I was not there, I do consider this to be rather bizarre...A big old thank you to Marriott for helping me discover what my ex had been doing for many a year!!
Just wanted to confirm with the prof that this was neither Stepping Stone nor I (and I am not positive about Stepping Stone) that tried to use your restroom facilities on that night...even as much as we travel. But I will recheck my travel night on that date to be absolutely positive about that.
In 1986 when my youngest child, a very mellow; fellow for 8 months old, a strange and misterious thing happed to My wife and I. We were opening a New Company Store in Florence (no, not Europe) Oregon. Upon being escorted to our Hotel room and while putting away our belongings my youngest started to whimper, then become very agitated to the point of histeria!! We were alarmed, to say the least, and my wife wanted to take him to see a local Doctor because this was totally out of our experience with any of our 4 children. So, we prepared to leave the room and once out side the child quit crying and was smiling and happy! Well, since we were dressed we went for a tour before the presentation I was giving that PM. As soon as we returned to the room to get dress for the event my son went into the same mood as before! We quickly got dressed and went to perform the Grand Opening Ribbon Cutting on our Retail Store. All went fine until we returned to the Hotel and my son once again became very upset! I took him out on the balcony and he became quite then back into the room, same thing happened to him, back to the balcony: quite, just like you turned off a 'crying switch'! So, thinking we could not stay in that room we ask for other room, maybe my son smelled something or saw something we could not. Sure enough just a room or two from the orginial one my son was his old self. Needless to say we changed rooms. An had a peaceful night! Almost the end of the story!
The next day I ask the owner of the hotel about room 11 if they had sprayed it or did something happen there!
Well, the story he told me made my blood run cold, the story was about two people a woman and a man was murdered in that room 6 months earlier and the police arrested the man's wife for the double homicide an she hung herself while out on bail, yep in the same room as the homicide took place!
Now, did she do it or did her husband's lover help her, we will never know but I'm sure my 8 months old son knew!!
We still own the store, in fact my son runs it but the hotel was torn down and a motel with a famous name was built there. I've never stayed in the new hotel and I assume they have a room 11 but guess what? For an unknown reason my son refuses to stay there and can't explain why! I wonder.............? I don't think we told him about that night in 1986. Go, figure!
Wow -- I totally believe in this kind of stuff. Just like animals sense earthquakes and other weather phenomena, I think some people (perhaps especially children) are attuned to 'sensing' bad things that have happened in the past.
Longhorn, just an aside: is your ex still alive? Could there be a connection?
These are really great stories, which, frankly, make mine seem rather mundane, but I had to post my most recent bizare (well, maybe not bizare, but inconvenient) story.
Some months ago I was at the NY Brooklyn Bridge Marriott. At about 2:00 am, nature called, I got up, used the facilities, and, upon flushing the toilet, suddenly had water spraying out of the tank from the area between the top of the tank and the tank.
I immediately took the top of the tank off only to have the water start spraying about two feet above the tank, all over me and the floor. While I was quickly waking up, it still wasn't fast enough as I was stupidly trying to see what was wrong, rather than simply shutting the valve off to stop the water! After seeing that a small rubber hose had become disconnected, I started trying to reconnect it - yes, while the water was still spraying out of it. Yes, I'm a lawyer, not a home-repair genius!
After slipping on the water that was now accumulating on the floor, I suddenly realized that all I had to do was shut the water off at the toilet valve, which I did. I then used all my extra towels soaking up the water because, being on an upper floor, all I could think of was the ceiling in the bathroom below me suddenly collapsing!
Even after looking at the hose, I couldn't figure out how to reinstall it (it had some sort of clip I had never seen before) so at what was now about 2:45 in the morning, I called the front desk. They send someone up, who made me feel really dumb by fixing it in about five seconds.
The only good thing about this was the extra rewards points the hotel credited me for the inconvenience.(And, by the way, the staff at the Brooklyn Bridge Marriott were really superb during all of this!)
I give you credit for trying, especially in the middle of the night! I think I probably would have fled the bathroom thinking the sky was falling or NYC was in the midst of an unpredicted hurricane.
I hope in addition to they extra points they gave you a couple bottles of water as a fond farewell so that you'd remember your stay!
A few years back, I was on business travel in a city where there are no Marriotts, so I stayed at a chain that shall go unnamed. (hint: it's the "world's largest")
It was a Friday morning, and I was coming back from my closing meeting to change into travel clothes, finish packing and check out. As I approached my room, I noticed the housekeeping cart outside my door, which was closed. (for some reason, every now and then, they clean my room the morning of check-out before I actually check out) As I entered my room, I was surprised to find the housekeeper and who I assumed was a maintenance man "going at it" on the love seat/mini sofa in my room! So, I left the room, and just stayed outside the door, clueless as to what to do. A few moments later, the man leaves the room hurriedly, shortly followed by the housekeeper who pleaded with me not to report her, as she had a big family to feed, needed the job, blah-blah-blah. So, I quickly changed, packed, staying as far away from the sofa as possible, checked out, then left without another word.
I didn't report it at the time, but did e-mail the hotel manager upon my return home, and she apologized, and offered a free night the next time I'm in the area. Needless to say, I never went back.