Tag Archives: hotel

Hampton Inn Sweepstakes

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Hampton Hotels. All opinions are 100% mine.

When you’re just dreaming about something fun you’d like to be doing, you may as well aim high. Why settle for picturing yourself in a boat on a river with tangerine trees and marmalade skies (to name just one example suggested by some wizard-bearded bloke in his pajamas)? You could be flying to Mars in a spaceship with one hand full of cake and the other… well, the other should probably be steering the spaceship! Scratch that. Why not skip the trip, teleport directly to Mars through some futuristic beam-me-down quantum technology wormhole gate thingie, and be able to breathe the air without a helmet? Your pet chinchilla could also come, but he would have to wear a tiny astronaut helmet just because it’s so darned cute.

Hampton_logo

Wait! I know. I’m going to aim even higher. Picture yourself with an entire Hampton Hotel (well, 100 rooms of it) for two nights of a wild weekend, just you and enough of your closest friends to fill it up. What the heck? Extend a forgiving hand of reconciliation (or conciliation if you were never friends to begin with) and invite a few enemies while you’re at it — you’ll have the space!

The nifty folks at Hampton are offering this very thing, all expenses paid, as a grand prize in the Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes.

And what would you do with a luxury hotel full of people you like (and maybe don’t dislike too much) for a whole weekend? Kick that imagination into high gear again and think of the possibilities.

  • Biggest? LAN? Party? Ever?
  • Capture the Flag?
  • Play “What Would Keith Moon Do?” (I’m kidding. Please don’t. We like the Hamptonites and their magnificent indoor plumbing!)
  • Murder Mystery Breakfast Lunch Dinner Breakfast Lunch Dinner?
  • Mini-Gnomedex #1?

Worried that the fat cats down at the IRS are going to be drooling at how much they can sucker out of you for hosting such a lavish bash? Not to worry, because the grand prize includes $5,000 to cover those taxes.

Hey, even if you’re not lucky enough to be the grand prize winner, our generous Hampton friends are still giving away weekend stays for 100 first place winners and three of their friends, each (no, the 100 people don’t have to fight over which of their three mutual friends get to enjoy the prize with them. That would be silly, and this is dead serious).

Visit my sponsor: Chain-of-Friends Grand Prize

The Chain of Friends Sweepstakes is open to everyone, not just Hilton Honors members or those who have previously stayed at a Hampton. So enter! Get your friends to enter! Get people who only moderately like you but might invite you to come if they win at the prompting of their kinder friends to enter the Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes!

If you do win either prize, though, I don’t know if you’re allowed to bring your pet chinchilla (astronaut helmet or sans astronaut helmet). You’ll have to check with the concierge.

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Gnomedex Hotel Max Discount

A few days ago, we sent out a tweet revealing our partnership with Hotel Max as the official Gnomedex hotel. Today, we’re happy to announce that our friends at the gorgeous artsy hotel has come up with a fantastic discount offer for any attendees who wish to stay in the same hotel that the staff and speakers will be in!

Between now and August 8th, you can reserve your room(s) online and receive a nightly rate of only $144.00 – including WiFi. This is an approximate 22% discount from the normal rates for this time of year! You can choose how many nights you stay at this rate between (and inclusive of) the dates of August 18 – August 22.

If you choose to register by phone, the same discount will apply. When calling 1-866-986-8087, just request the Gnomedex 2010 Attendee Block.

I have to thank our friends at @Hotel_Max for extending this generosity towards our conference attendees. I also have to thank @hipsforhire for helping pull this together.

The entire Gnomedex team is looking forward to seeing all of you in just a few weeks!

Unlock Your Hotel Room with Your Cell Phone

I hate traveling. I love the places that I visit and the people I interact with when I get there. It’s the actual travel part that gets to me every time. There’s always such a rush to do everything, you know? Checking into my hotels is probably my least favorite task. God love ’em for what they do, but the desk clerks always make me batty. They’re always so helpful and happy. I know, it’s a good thing that they’re good at what they do. But when I check in, I’m usually frazzled and just want to pass out on my bed. Like all of you, though, I have to stand in line and then go through the entire process while talking to someone who is entirely too perky. InterContinental Hotels understands my frustrations, and is working on a plan to change things drastically.

Next month, InterContinental Hotels Group will start testing new technology at two of their Holiday Inn locations which allows guests to use their smartphones to unlock the doors to their rooms.

IHG exec Bryson Koehler thinks that the phones may be the perfect answer for weary (and harried) travelers. “The proliferation of smartphones is growing in such a way that we have to look at what people are already bringing with them to make their stay more enjoyable,” he said. “We don’t need to burden people with additional items; it just clutters up their lives. The beauty of the smart phone is that they’ve already got it.”

The test will begin in June at the Holiday Inn Chicago O’ Hare Rosemont and the Holiday Inn Express Houston Downtown Convention Center. To join the trial, participants will need to download an Open Ways app to their phone. Guests will call up the confirmation email on their screen and hold it up to a sensor on the door which will automagically unlock it.

What are your thoughts on this? If you have a smartphone and travel often, is this something you feel you would take advantage of?

You won’t need a smartphone OR a hotel stay to grab the hottest software and apps for your computers and mobile devices.

It Tasted Better Than Soap!


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Everyone loves gifts! I especially love them when I’m not expecting them! Nancy from the Outrigger Waikiki sent me a surprise gift basket to my room when I was staying there recently, courtesy of Bruce Fisher and his team. I was in Hawaii for the [re]Think Hawaii conference. Apparently, the hotel noticed that I was tweeting from my hotel room, and posting pictures of the scenery! In any case, they sent me a very cool gift basket, and I was pleased as heck with it!

The card was really nice… appreciative of my stay at their hotel. Inside, there was an actual basket, believe it or not! There were some Sweet Potato and Taro chips inside, right on the top. They’re very yummy, and made by the Hawaiian Chip Company.

I also uncovered some Island Assorted Candies, some chocolate-chip macadamia muffins (SO delicious!), chocolate and pineapple flavored macadamia nuts, and some shredded newspaper! Oh, wait… the newspaper was probably to keep the chips and such from getting broken!

I really appreciate Bruce, and everyone who made my trip to Hawaii a reality. I had an amazing time on the Islands, and at the conference itself. Also, thanks to the Outrigger Waikiki for sending me this great basket of goodies!

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Room’s View from Sheraton Waikiki

Room's View from Sheraton Waikiki

I am currently sitting in Waikiki, relaxing and enjoying the beauty around me. This Hawaii hotel is very comfortable, and super nice! I have to thank them for bringing me here! The website for the hotel boasts:

Of all Waikiki Beach oceanfront hotels, one towers above the rest… the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel and Resort is a modern monument to traditional Hawaiian hospitality.

I absolutely have to agree. Of course, I wouldn’t have made the connection to the hotel if it weren’t for Traci, who has been my guide in navigating this island. She’s got a little geek streak in her, too:

What’s the Gaudiest Hotel Decor? A Glowing Buddha!


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Not long ago, I appeared at MacHeist. The hotel I stayed in while there was pretty good. I had clean towels and bedding. It was comfortable, and plenty large enough for myself. I had hot and cold running water. The pictures on the walls weren’t even so bad! (You KNOW what I’m talking about!)

However, for some unknown reason, there was a glowing Buddha in my room. I’m not kidding you – take a look at the video. There was a large glowing Buddha on a shelf in my room. I don’t know why they did this, but it confuses me. If I were a Buddhist, I would likely be offended by a Buddha that glows. If I were a Christian, I would be equally offended by a glowing statue of Christ.

Not sure what’s up with this, or why they felt the need to place this statue in the room. Were they trying to be funny? If so, they failed miserably. Were they thinking it’s hip and cool? Again – epic fail. If the owners or manager of the hotel are Buddhists, that’s wonderful for them. However, I don’t feel it’s right to “push” that belief set on their paying guests, and making them uncomfortable, by placing such a thing in the rooms.

What do you think? Am I right to feel weird about this? Why or why not? And while you’re busy typing an answer… what’s the strangest or most unique hotel decor you’ve ever seen?

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Hotel (dis)Honor Bar


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Staying in a hotel can be a pain in the arse at times. Sure, it’s nice to get away from home. Heck yes, some hotel rooms are nicer than your home. And of course it’s fabulous when you don’t have to clean up after yourself. No matter how many perks there may be, there always seems to end up being something to drive you absolutely bananas.

I love the convenience of Honor Bars in my rooms. I know – everything is more expensive than it should be when you grab it out of that little fridge. Let’s face it, though, the ease of access cannot be beat. Think about it: you’re up half the night working on a presentation for your keynote speech the next morning. You’re starving to death and the hotel restaurant closed hours ago. Why not reach for that candy bar or bag of peanuts? That’s exactly what I was attempting to do, people!

On my recent trip to help host the MacHeist presentation, I decided to grab something out of the Honor Bar in my hotel room. I wanted a snack! However, I encountered a slight problem…

Nothing I tried would allow me to open the door to get the dang snack! I even risked life and limb by throwing myself at it – still nothing! What the hell? What does a man have to do to get a snack in that joint? I have money. They even had my credit card on file. So it’s not like I planned to steal the damn thing. I just wanted something to eat!

I have a feeling I’ll not be staying there again.

When was the last time you stayed in a hotel? Did everything go smoothly and exactly as planned? What types of snafus did you run into? Were they things you are willing to overlook – or will you be changing locations the next time you travel?

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Seattle Hotel Discounts

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