Available on Request, by Carolyn Pearson

gun shower kettleHow often have you arrived at a hotel and found that something you expected to find was missing? It could be as simple as a shower cap or a peppermint tea bag – one of those home comforts that you assumed would be available.

You may have left something essential behind, like hair straighteners or tights – I’ve been known to leave my entire make-up bag at home. One of our members, who shall remain nameless, once set-off on a business trip without packing a single piece of underwear.

When we travel frequently, we can become blasé; it’s all too easy to forget those little essentials.  What many of us don’t do is ask our hotels for help.  As one hotelier put it “people don’t ask for what they can’t see”.  Simple things like a note on a courtesy tray that says “fresh milk is available on request” makes all the difference, as does a note in the bathroom itemising a list of other items that are available, such as a toothbrushes and toothpaste or a comb.

I asked some of our hotel partners what they had available if we only knew to ask.

  1. The St Pancras Renaissance hotel in London offers guests travelling to France a city map and a guide to Paris, so that they can start planning their trip while enjoying their journey on the Eurostar.
  2. The Egerton House hotel in London has a box called ‘you forgot it – we’ve got it’, which contains items, such as hairspray, hairbrushes, vanity kits, nail varnish remover, hosiery, make-up remover and more – and, if they don’t have it they will do everything they can to source it.
  3. Lots of premium hotels don’t provide tea making facilities as standard, but the Sofitel Le Grand Ducal Luxembourg will provide a kettle on request, and for those of us who like to keep in shape while travelling, there are also yoga mats and light dumbbells available.
  4. For some serious in-room grooming the Four Seasons Hotel in Riyadh has curling irons, hair straighteners and salon professional steamers available on request.

When asked about the peculiar requests they had received from guests, Joseph Warren, Sales Director at Raithwaite Hall said: “Perhaps the strangest request was for a shotgun! A gentleman turned up to shoot at the nearby Mulgrave Estate and was so excited to be shooting at such a prestigious venue that he left his gun at home!

“Not only did we have to source him a gun through one of our contacts, we spent half an hour ringing his neighbour to get them to remove his gun from his porch where it was on display to anyone walking past.”

So next time you are travelling don’t be shy, your request is unlikely to raise an eyebrow, in fact, according to Joseph Warren “that’s the point of travelling to a luxury property, you’re allowed to forget things – in fact, it’s your right to”.

Tell us what important items you have forgotten and how you resolved it.


Carolyn headshot6Carolyn Pearson, Founder of Maiden-Voyage.com

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