As you may have noticed I have been on holiday for the last fortnight. If you haven’t, you really need to go back and read about Me, my mum and Amsterdam to catch up ;p
Over the last couple of weeks I have managed to check into 4 different hotels. This isn’t my norm – I usually book a self-catering apartment for the duration but as I spent my first week with my mum, my second with OH and the weekend in the middle with both of them, my brother and his wife, it just kind of happened that I became a hotel bed hopper.
I view myself as pretty easy pleased. I don’t need fancy stuff to keep me happy or so I thought. Surprisingly, it didn’t take long to turn me into a hotel room snob. Previously, I’d have maintained, a hotel room is solely a place to sleep in between wining and dining. That was was no longer true! I was running around like a demented sniffer dog, checking out if there was hand lotion, a sachet of hot chocolate, a complimentary biscuit and a mini-bar. If there was a free sewing kit I was ecstatic.
On one occasion it was “hurrah” there’s free biscuits – swiftly followed by “lemon f’ing curd biscuits?!?” On another it was “I can’t believe there’s no mini-bar!” This is highly telling of my new found hotel room pretentiousness as, of course, I’d never purchase anything from a mini-bar anyway. I’m far more inclined to smuggle in a packet of jelly beans, a tube of Pringles or a bottle of wine (I say inclined, I mean always) rather than paying something silly like €2.50 for a Mars Bar. By the way, who does pay that for a Mars Bar?? I mean, I totally get that someone might in Amsterdam but no stoner with the munchies is going to be staying in a hotel with a mini-bar…see told you I was utterly pompous.
So, I was in 4 hotels and they were the NH Amsterdam Schiller, the Malmaison Edinburgh, a big old country house in Co Durham and Aldwark Manor Golf and Spa Hotel near York.
You may wonder what one was the best but really they all had their own idiosyncrasies. The hotel in Amsterdam had all the toiletries (and a free toothbrush from reception because like a total twat I had forgotten mine). It was original Art Deco and it’s bonus ball was Tom Jones live in the brasserie (if you don’t already know this you didn’t click on the link above – go back! ;)).
The Malmaison lost points due to the lemon curd biscuits but it did have a lovely large room and the Rangers squad staying overnight prior to the Hibs match. I like to think my loud snoring kept them up all night and my intimidating chat in the lift with the RFC suit lead to Hibs beating their asses 2-1 the following day. This stay also followed on from an eating experience at The Kitchin where I was able to watch Tom Kitchin in the kitchen so, as you’d expect, most things fall into insignificance after that and sadly, the Mal’s breakfast did just that.
The hotel in Co Durham’s jacuzzi wasn’t working but it’s redeeming feature was Scarlett from Gogglebox was in the pool when OH and I tried to lose some wine pounds in the spa. She’s a lovely girl and even though OH had a million questions for her (thankfully he only asked about 100) she was adorable and chatted away with a genuineness that made her even more appealing that she already is. As soon as I got back to the room I messaged Mini-me to let her know who I’d been swimming with. She was extremely impressed (she didn’t rate Tom Jones and was only mildly amused by the Rangers squad) She immediately asked if I told her she was my favourite (because she is – closely followed by Gyles). I admitted I hadn’t because I didn’t want to be gushy or impose on her. However, OH did and her stories in the sauna of Jonathon Ross’s Halloween party were great.
Finally, the hotel near York, as well as the toiletries, huge bedroom and working jacuzzi also had a golf course. Fortunately, the kind chap in the golf shop let me borrow a golf bag he brought in specially from home for me. Due to golf etiquette I wasn’t allowed to share one (and I thought I was posh). This enabled OH and I to have a round of golf. Well, it enabled us to start a round of golf…turns out my brand new pair of golf shoes started to rub around the 2nd…by the 6th I couldn’t bare to walk any further and I made poor OH take me back to the 19th hole.
So to summarise – it doesn’t matter if you have hand lotion, a shower cap or a lemon curd biscuit in your room. What really makes a holiday is the people you meet on it and we met quite a few special people. What was even better was being able to spend some real quality time with my family, which can’t be beat.
Incidentally, on the way home we decided to take a detour and visit Staithes – a small, picturesque coastal village in North Yorkshire. I didn’t know before we got there that Old Jack’s Boat was filmed there (for those of you that aren’t grandparents it’s a kids program with Bernard Cribbins in it) OH took a pic of me there claiming it was yet another star spot…
For more pics of my holiday you can check them out on instagram here 😉