The Scariest Hotel Experience of My Life

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This post originally appeared on Best Western’s’s blog, where I regularly contribute stories. I was compensated for this post but the opinions are mine.

Scariest Hotel Experience

The dirtiest, scariest hotel experience I’ve ever had throughout my many travels was at a “historic” hotel across from Madison Square Gardens in New York City. In fact, to this day when I reference that hotel, I call it the “Crack Hotel”. On that cold, winter night, every hotel in Manhattan was sold out, so when I walked into its 1920s-style lobby, I initially counted my blessings that I was in a great hotel in a central part of town.

The moment I entered my room, it went from a dream to a nightmare. The walls felt gooey, dirty with ugly wallpaper that looked like it was from ancient times. The room reeked of old cigarettes. The mattress was extremely worn and was only covered by a white bed sheet that was so thin it was practically transparent. And, worse of all, were the sounds of rats or roaches that seem to be constantly shuffling at night.

I’m such a clean freak that if it hadn’t been very late and snowing on that night in 2000, I would have literally slept outside somewhere with my luggage. But on that particular night, I had no choice.

Today, I make it a point to frequent hotels that will help me feel like I’m at my home away from home. For me it all starts with a room that feels fresh and clean. Having stayed at more than 500 hotels in my lifetime, you would think that’s something that would be pretty basic and automatic, but it’s not and that’s why I love the peace of mind I get with Best Western and their “I Care Clean” program.

The “I Care Clean” program consists of:

  • Ultra violet (UV) sterilization wands – Wands from Purelight are used to sterilize “high touch points” in the hotel such as telephones, clocks, light switches, door handles, bathroom fixtures and common areas.
  • UV inspection black lights – These black lights are used as part of the housekeeper inspection process to detect any biological matter, food particles, and more, that the human eye cannot see.
  • Clean remotes or wraps for the remote control device – These unique, seamless remote controls are designed specifically to make it easy to clean and disinfect before each guest stay.
  • Pillow and blanket wraps – Extra pillows, blankets and towels are wrapped in 100 percent recyclable and biodegradable single use wraps to ensure guests know that these products have been cleaned just for them.

Given that Best Western hotels are nearly everywhere I need to travel, with more than 2,100 locations nationwide, I like knowing the odds that I’ll end up in a musty feeling hotel that I don’t trust to be sanitary are close to nil. I’d rather sleep outside with my bags at a bus bench or my car than sleep in a dirty hotel room, and I love that I can always count on a clean room from Best Western.

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