Getting the Hang of It
“Conservation is simple, once you get the hang of it.” So says the tag on the towel rack in my Homewood Suites hotel room. In the name of water and energy conservation, the tag encourages you to hang up your towels and reuse them. When you need new ones, you just leave them on the floor, and housekeeping will give you fresh ones.
In principle, this sounds like a good idea. In practice, hotels have yet to get the hang of it.
The problem from the hotel guest’s perspective is that there often isn’t anyplace you can hang your towel and expect it to be dry the next time you need it.
My current room at the Homewood Suites in Carle Place, New York, has a single towel rack placed less than a foot above the top of the toilet tank.
Try to hang your towel on the rack after a shower. It invariably drapes down over the top of the toilet tank, teasing fate as if it’s about to fall in.
I tried putting my towel on a hook on the back of the door. Much of it stayed bunched up and was still quite damp the next morning.
Putting the towel over the shower curtain rack isn’t practical either. As soon as my husband would shower, the towel would get all wet.
It’s not as if the hotel couldn’t have provided a practical towel rack. Get rid of the giant poster hanging over the top of the towel rack, move the towel rack up another 30 inches, and you have a practical solution. Or, leave the poster in place, and mount a towel rack on the side wall, 40 inches above the toilet paper.
Better still, put two or more towel racks in the bathroom. Hotel suites like this can easily sleep four to six people. But there’s nowhere to hang the towels so they dry.
This isn’t the only hotel with this problem. My husband and I have stayed at lovely luxury hotels that provide six to eight fluffy pillows, but less than 24 inches of towel-hanging space.
Tags touting water and energy conservation may get brownie points from the U.S. Green Building Council or other groups. But real conservation and energy efficiency happen only when companies make it practical for people to follow through.
Conservation may be simple, once you get the hang of it. Let’s hope hotels get the message soon.