Originally, I planned to skip it. Watching wannabe chefs mess up in the kitchen is one thing, but to see hotels with problems like bug infestations and laundry issues really creeps me out. Could I watch and ever stay in a hotel again?
But they tricked me into it. The Olympics ended, and I thought I was getting my regular back to back Hell’s Kitchen/Master Chef doses and instead, I found Hotel Hell. Gordon Ramsay amuses me. I admit it. I probably wouldn’t like him very much in life, but I like to watch him. So I gave it a shot.
And I was pleasantly surprised. The problem with the first hotel featured, Juniper Hill Inn in Vermont, wasn’t bugs or rodents or uncleanliness. It was the owners being downright unpleasant, hoarding antiques and paintings, and not paying the staff. Aha! Bonus, the first hotel owner was clueless to his own arrogance and probably a bigger jerk than Ramsay himself. I was fascinated. And it was a two-part episode! They left me hanging for the conclusion in the next episode, so I had to watch again. Now I’m hooked.
I love hotels. I love travel and staying nights in new places. Not sure I would love staying at any of Gordon Ramsay’s Hotel Hell places, though. The worst hotel I’ve ever stayed at was in St. Augustine, Florida. It was shoddy, but fine until bedtime. In the middle of the night, someone had to go to the bathroom and turned on the lights and ack! The walls were covered with roaches the size of my fist. Lots of them. I was twelve, it made an impression. We spent the rest of the night with the lights on, cowering in bed. We left before dawn.
My favorite hotel, not surprisingly, is in Walt Disney World. Is it the best hotel ever? Probably not. But it feels like home to me, ever since I honeymooned there twenty-two years ago this week. Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. When I go, I never want to leave. It doesn’t hurt that there’s a castle next door.
Do you watch Hotel Hell? Gordon Ramsay, love him or hate him? What’s your favorite hotel? Your own Hotel Hell experience?