Sunday, May 26, 2013

New Critera for Hotels: Bed, Bath, Coffee

The semester is over, and the hubby and I decided to celebrate by getting away for the weekend.  Our schedule and budget wasn't conducive for a week long get-away, so we opted for a low-stress trip to a location that could be reached via automobile in less than an hour. 

After a thorough search of our options almost randomly picking a location, we landed on Lantana Resort & Marina on Lake Ray Roberts.

The hubby and I aren't exactly photographers, but this was one of my favorite spots at the resort.  The view of the water from the back of the main building.



The views were gorgeous.  The resort is within a state park, so there were trails leading out from the resort leading to woods, pastures, and the lake.  It's the kind of stuff that makes one glad to be alive and happy to be away from other humans for a moment. 

I even got to terrorize the hubby by going to the stables and petting a horse.  He doesn't like it when I make friends with strange animals, but you think he'd be used to it by now, what with my propensity to fawn over stray dogs and cats.  I nearly made friends with a raccoon on this trip, too!  I was walking around the back porch of the lodge late in the evening, smelling the rain and watching the bugs, when a raccoon walked, no, sauntered, around the corner like he had some business to attend to.  He looked up at me like he honestly didn't expect anyone to be there.  I looked at him and thought, "KITTY?!" but no, not a kitty.  Apparently my mental "kitty!' shriek scared him, because he trotted off in a hurry. 

Back to the point.  Views were nice, and the nearby towns were fun (we highly recommend Lucy's Moms on Main and especially their coconut cream pie, of which we consumed copious amounts).  We did realize too late that we made one huge error:  we booked the trip for Memorial Day weekend, and we picked the type of destination that people love to bring their kids to as they kick off summer vacation.  Their screaming, running, crying kids.  Don't get me wrong, I love kids!  Just not other people's loud kids on my vacation.  It being Memorial Day weekend did, though, mean that we stumbled upon a pretty dang cool car show.


I came to a realization this weekend.  After reflecting upon our past vacations, there are three key criteria that will always be important to me when I stay in a hotel, resort, or any other pay-per-night location:  the bed, bath, and coffee.  These three things can make or break a hotel for me.  A bad bed, and I won't get any sleep or may be sore the next day.  The bath is where real value can be added:  a great shower or jacuzzi tub add an element of relaxation, and when I get up in the morning, I want the option to drink coffee in my jammies while I take in the view or read a book.  These will be my three new standards for accommodations.  The problem?  For most places, there is insufficient information to really decide based on this criteria.  My guess is that some of you kids may be wanting the same information.  So, here on Crunchy Grown Up, I'll provide reviews of places I stay (as rare as that may be) based on these criteria.  All I ask is that you give info on the bed, bath, and coffee of the places you stay in the comments.  Good idea, kids?  Let's get this started with my most recent experience.

Lantana Resort & Marina

  •  Bed:  Really wasn't that bad for me, but the hubby woke up with his back hurting today.  We both tossed and turned quite a bit, and the pillows were fluffy but flimsy.  Thank goodness we brought our own pillows, or we would have been in bad shape.  The only thing that interfered with our sleep was a lack of central air (just a noisy window unit blowing air directly at us) and the crying baby and angry woman next door.
  • Bath:  No tub, just a small standing shower with a curtain.  Shower nozzle was nice and high up and one of those rain-like things.  Not a lot of pressure, and the water never got very hot.  Towels were crappy and felt like they'd been washed in some sort of odd detergent.  However, the soap and shampoo provided were really nice and replenished daily.
  • Coffee:  This was a fiasco.  My first coffee pot had standing water and a dead bug in it.  I told the front desk, and they were very apologetic and said they'd replace it immediately.  Which they did, with a broken coffee pot.  Easy mistake; I can understand that.  The third pot spilled coffee on the counter and burned the already crummy Maxwell house coffee.  I didn't even bother telling them about the third pot.  By that point I was resigned to not having good coffee on this trip.  While I don't use individual-use pots at home, it seems to me a hotel of any kind could benefit from investing in small single-serving machines.  Spend more than $10 on the coffee pot, and you'd be amazed the quality you can find!

So tell me kids, where have you stayed lately, and how was their Bed, Bath, and Coffee?

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