I was thinking about hotel flower arrangements this morning and I was wondering how they have fared during the recent economic ickyness. As I suspected, hotels have cut back on things like flowers to save money. The Ritz Carlton has gone to using things like apples and potted plants instead of fancy floral arrangements. Reasoning that hotel guests don’t really notice the difference and it cuts down on costs significantly. Understandably, potted plants just need water and apples can go at least a week before you have to recycle them into a fruit tart. But I think any guest staying at the Ritz Carlton is reasonable to expect that the $400 a night price tag includes a massive mound of floral fanciness in the lobby,
and not the genetically engineered apple-cactus,
Some other cost savings measures, no more staff, so instead of a plumber you get a plunger and forget everything you learned in high school Spanish because the maids are gone. The valets have been replaced with no one and the man you gave your keys to has just stolen your car.
Spinning the less is more concept, Hilton has begun advertising the Executive Adventure Suite. For the price of a regular suite, executives will get the added excitement of not knowing whether there will be towels, sheets, running water or electricity. So far the reviews are mixed. However, one unintended benefit, companies are finding the threat of the Adventure Suite a useful motivational tool. The Marriott’s, Intellectual Suite has no cable or phone. And the Holiday Inn’s austere Live Like An Inmate Suite is gaining popularity among young men.