The Grunge Report: One Dirty Hotel in Lancaster, Pa.
Once upon a time, amid the bucolic splendor of Pennsylvania Dutch Country, there was an awful little hotel called the Days Inn Lancaster. Actually, "awful" is too weak a word. Godawful is more like it. The Days Inn, unlike most others in the hotel chain's stable of properties, was the sort of place where travelers complained of bedbugs and bloodstained mattresses, of sinks clogged with hair, of green water in the algae-infested pool.
Those souls unlucky enough to stay the night in that dreary abode would ordinarily have little recourse. This being a 21st-century fairytale, however, they took their grievances to the Internet, where the complaints eventually led to the hotel being named one of the "Dirtiest Hotels of 2008," a dubious distinction recently conferred on the Days Inn Lancaster by TripAdvisor.com.
And there the matter might have ended if it were not for the aggressive action of Wyndham Hotel Group, the parent company of Days Inn, which, when contacted by Travel Log, informed us in a statement that, "We terminated the independently owned and operated Days Inn Lancaster of Lancaster, Pa., on Feb. 11, 2008, because of its failure to meet quality standards." Pressed to explain what this meant, Rich Roberts, a company spokesman, said that "On the date of termination, the hotel immediately is withdrawn from our reservations and sales systems, and our relationship with the owner officially ends. The owner immediately must cease and desist doing business under our brand name and is given a limited amount of time to remove our signs and logos."
Thanks to the proactive heroics of the hotel's corporate office, therefore, travelers will soon be spared a Days Inn experience that includes, according to TripAdvisor reviews, "filthy carpet," "soiled sheets," and the dreaded "stench that resembled skunk." But don't get the idea that visitors to Amish country will inevitably sleep happily ever after. As Roberts put it, "Typically independently owned and operated hotels that are terminated from a franchise relationship continue to do business as non-branded hotels."
Indeed, a call to the hotel confirmed that business will likely continue as usual, though without the old signage. ("We are in the process of switching franchises," said the employee who answered the phone.) Which leaves us with the following not-very-eloquent moral (apologies to Shakespeare): Beware the hotel at 30 Keller Avenue in Lancaster. That which we call a hotel by any other name would smell as foul.
Anyone out there care to tell share their own dirty hotel horror stories?
By Scott Vogel |
March 5, 2008; 7:14 AM ET
The Odd File
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