Welcome back to the Hotel Richard

Richard Turen

It is time to complete my vision for the “perfect new hotel concept,” which I began to detail in my previous column. Here are some further musings on the Hotel Richard brand that I am building in my mind.

Decor: Rooms will not have bathtubs. Instead, we will feature the industry’s largest, most deluxe showers. There will be no minibar, but there will be a fridge in each room filled with bottles of sparkling and flat water. Our beds will all be of the finest quality and fully adjustable. This will be a way for a major bedding manufacturer to introduce an upscale audience to the benefits of an adjustable bed. Our televisions will be wall-mounted and enable us to customize the image on the screen based on what we know about the guest.

Dining arrangements: We will have a small, high-quality breakfast buffet with just a few sandwiches and pastries from the city’s best bakery. This will be for a flat fee, as many of our guests will not want a sit-down breakfast. Alternately, they can walk up to the lobby Ultra Take-Out for a latte or something even more fashionable and a selection of pastries, also from the city’s top-rated bakery. There will be no on-premises cooking.

Bar Richard: Oh yes, we will have a bar. But every cocktail will be created to order based on a short questionnaire each guest fills out. The guest gets to name the drink, and we will have a computer program that stores it so it can easily be duplicated when the guest returns. In our bar, every guest creates and “owns” their own drink. We fly in popcorn from Garrett Popcorn Shops in Chicago; that will be our only snack.

Room arrival: Every room has a single flower and a note from a local resident welcoming the visitor to their town. The note includes “Ten Personal Resident Recommendations created especially for …” with the guest’s name. 

Hallway decor: Our hallways will be lined with same-size, framed paintings created by children from local schools. The collection will be curated by local art teachers, and every picture and photo in the hotel will be numbered. The guest can choose any picture hanging and order it from the front desk. Since all of the pictures will be 11-by-14 inches, it will be easy to gift-box them; 100% of the sales money will be returned to the school, with a gift for the artist.

Each room will have: A moon globe in a corner of the bedroom ceiling. Guests can lie in bed and easily create the kind of moon they would like in their room at night. A small moon controller will sit next to the TV. There will be a small side or upstairs area in each room; guests can request that it be set up as an office, a gym or a yoga studio — their choice. Our rooms can, therefore, be customized at no additional cost. 

The neighborhood invitational: At the Hotel Richard, we will want all of our guests to feel as though they have joined a small community. They will find a lovely Neighborhood Welcome Book awaiting them filled with invitations from local quality merchants to stop by for a brief visit and a “sample.” The book will also feature recommended walking routes and jogging trails. There will be no ads. Ads are passe. Our neighborhood invitational will be informational.

I hope, dear reader, to run into each of you in the lobby of the Hotel Richard one day soon. 

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