thread Now that I'm a travelling businessman type person,
what's the best hotel chain to use?

I've been told that some give you points that you can save up for free stays, is this true?

edit: I'm in Evesham on Monday night. Anyone in that neck of the woods?
permalink Most of the major chains have some sort of loyalty programme.
Ask Alistair... he's our resident expert on UK hotel chains.
permalink He's holiday inn isn't he?
I'm with what looks like an independent in Evesham as it was close to where I need to be and none of the chains were. I'm in Durham and Basildon soon though.
permalink He's Intercontinental Group
which has Intercontinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Indigo, Staybridge Suites and probably some others.
permalink No, I think you got them all.
Very stalky ;)
permalink Professional interest!
!!!
permalink And does that
explain the folder full of photos?
permalink Doesn't everyone travel with a high magnification infra-red nightvision scope?
?
permalink HOTEL Indigo
not "Indigo"

we get told off for that.

we also have Candlewood suites in the US and some new brands that haven't opened any properties yet.

If you can stay at a Staybridge or a hotel indigo, do it they are noramlly very good.
permalink Our holiday Inn basildon is a bit average.
stay in Southend, it's really nice and only 6 months old.
permalink OK the UK hotels mid-range foodchain in order of descending preference
Hotel Indigo
Park Plaza
Aloft
Staybridge Suites (especially for longer stays etc, includes kitchen )
Raddison Blu
Hilton (there is a massive range of quality in Hiltons so check each out)
Novotel
Citizen M (small rooms)
Holiday Inn (again quite a spread of quality but new ones are good)
Marriott
Holiday Inn Express (new ones (blue carpet/ brown desks are really nice)
Hampton by Hilton
New Premier Inn
Park Inn
Ramada (inc encore)
Older Premier Inn
Ibis Styles
Days Inn (except the one in wetherby)
Quality Hotel
Ibis
Ibis Budget
Tune
Travelodge
Easy Hotel


Wherever you stay, get the rewards points, often they will give free upgrades, late checkout, free wifi (like IHG rewards will from july) and points can be exchanged for amazon vouchers or stays or air miles etc.
plus a rewards member doesnt have to fill out all their details all the time.

permalink I's pretty much agree with that.
and I'd ring a loud alarm bell about Hilton. The nice ones are nice, but they have some right shitholes hiding behind the Hilton name.

They key things I need from a hotel room are generally:

Clean comfortable bed
clean working shower
controllable heating temperature
carpets I'm prepared to walk on in bare feet.

I also want a bar in the hotel and room service food after midnight, as I often arrive in hotels late from night work on site or long flights that get in at twat-o-clock..
permalink One of our openings people had to stay somewhere (not one of ours)
it was so filthy that they called down for extra towels and effectively recarpeted the room in bath towels.
permalink and good Wifi is increasingly
on that list of what is called 'Table stakes'

took me ages to get the poker reference
permalink Oooh, yeah.
The Bristol Hilton is a right stinker.

It's right on the M4/M5 junction, too - so a quiet night is far from guaranteed.
permalink I like to have two beds
so that I can lay stuff out n one and sleep in the other. I care not one jot about minibars or the look of the bar and restaurant, I just want to sleep in them.
permalink you should sleep in the room, not the bar
.
permalink Marriott in Durham is dated, and when I stayed there the beds weren't terribly comfy
Raddison Blu is supposed to be nice, though.
permalink |That is just the North though
Birmingham's 4* Hilton is the single shittest hotel I have ever stayed in.

The Raddison Blu on Yas Island is great - I do prefer La Meridien though.
permalink Marriot.
or Hilton at a push.
permalink I'm working class.
I'm not sure I'm allowed in those establishments.
permalink Hilton are mostly very good
and do have other linked brands (I'm pretty sure we have Doubletree in the UK, and there is a cheaper name as well that escapes me)
permalink best western?
permalink High Noon
or The Long Riders
permalink +1
:)
permalink arf!
permalink Park Inn, I think
permalink that's rezidor. i'd generally avoid.
... park plaza is good though.
permalink hampton by hilton
pretty decent actually but mostly because they are all brand new.
permalink Hampton
that could well be it
permalink Yep,
I am in a Doubletree next week.
permalink The intercontinental (holiday inn)
loyalty card is supposed to be good,
Says alistair...
permalink depends on your budget and which countries you're visiting
I used Holiday Inn, good rewards scheme, but some of their properties are pretty dire

To be honest, in terms of somewhere to get a guaranteed good night's sleep in an unknown town, I rate Premier Inn over many expensive chains. Not glamorous, but after the excitement wears off all you really want is a reliably good mattress and soundproofing.

If you do it a lot, then B&Bs are good because you avoid the feeling of being in yet another panini hotel, and normally have a friendly owner and some dogs to chat to.
permalink Right, thanks.
I stayed in a premier inn recently and it was leagues above the travelodge I stayed in, though I've only stayed in one of each.
permalink premier inn is much better than travelodge
but a cardboard box under a flyover is often better than travelodge.
permalink Premier Inn is also usually getting on for twice the price
of a travelodge.
Some of them are alright, and they are super super cheap - some girls in our office had a night out, and stayed at a travelodge for a tenner each for the night. They booked a couple of months in advance, which helps.
permalink in case you weren't already aware
never ever ever ever ever Ibis
permalink I bis
you bis
we bis
he/she bisses?
permalink Sugar sugar kandy pop
Push it down and pull it up
permalink there's a video doing the rounds which i'm trying to mindbleach of an attractive woman
pulling her guts out through her arse

you're not helping
permalink although the recent breed of Novotels are fine.
same group, I think.
permalink indeed
I think if it's habitable, it gets a Novotel sign, if it's a piss-stained asbestos-fringed dump, it gets an Ibis sign
permalink I think you are bang on.
.
permalink And even less,
an Etap (now known as Ibis Budget). I stayed in the one in Salford for a couple of nights when I was between permanent addresses. It gave me pernicious depression.
permalink could've been worse -
a Formule1 but I've only ever seen one in the UK, on the north circular near the A13 at Beckton.
permalink t here used to be one in Halifax
I think, somewhere I occasionally used to drive anyway.
permalink there is nothing
that can beat South Coventry Ibis

*flashbacks*
permalink There's one on the A12
near Barking.
permalink Yep,
I drove past both the other week I think.
permalink is there?
I'm down there frequently 'cos we look after all the hospitals - never seen the hotel so maybe I just mentally block it :)

*edit* no, that's the one I mean, I didn't realise it was officially barking.
permalink Oh, A406.
I think someone's been giving me misleading information about road numbers.
permalink it's my main route
into central london so I'm on it weekly if not more often :)
permalink I was just making a dig
about Alistair not knowing his road numbers.

Mind you I was looking up bus timetables on Guernsey earlier so who am I to talk.
permalink And I think I must have driven past
the same one twice, in opposite directions.
permalink Well the largest in the world perhaps?
http://www.ihg.com/hot...

it has fantastic people working for it. (me)


and a very good rewards points thing
http://www.ihg.com/pri...

permalink Cracking, thanks
and I've printed that list off too.
permalink speaking of hotels alistair my friend stayed at the shoreditch crowne
a dinky little hotel (though he forgot to use your discount)
but they're knocking the shit out of the facade so the 'sky bar' was a little loud.. which was a test dept soundtrack for me but an annoyance for him

some feedback:
1) he wasn't sure if the water left on the table was free (i said obviously it was)
2) he didn't know if using the tv was free (i didn't give a shit)

as you can guess he hates extra charges so a card explaining the rules might be helpful

3) i noticed the paintings in the corridor were hinged and seeing as they'd open up right in front of the bathroom
he worried someone could watch him have a shit through a one way mirror.. what can i say i have strange friends
permalink It's 268 rooms so not that dinky
it is being converted to a different brand (not ours) so they are beating the hell out of it.
water is free, usually there is a little tent cars sayin 'with our compliments'
TV is free unless you ue the film on demand / porn channels, if he's worried he can ask reception to block all premium content when he checks in.

the corridors things are riser doors that are disguised as paintings, there would still be no view into the loo, and they are never big enough to get into.

permalink I reckon you could put in the paintings-covering-perving-holes though
and charge for it as a feature.
permalink oh it just seemed dinky as the reception was quite small
and he was on the top floor which seemed to be mainly bar/restaurant so about 8 rooms and i didn't explore further

really nice staff though as they were mostly forrins
permalink it was always good
but never quite great.

almost all hotel staff are forrins for some reason.
permalink just hazard it with local
b&b's and guest houses?
permalink might do sometimes
but I like the idea of a rewards scheme.
thread Shall we have a new thread?
So far today I have consumed three espressos and a square sausage and egg roll. How about you?
permalink Yes, let's have a new thread.
I am on my second coffee, which is nearing tepidity as we speak, thus heralding the making of the third coffee.
I have had a "baguette" with bacon, egg and mushrooms. Sadly I omitted to order red sauce. Sandwich fail.

I'm 70% of the way through a 100ish house layout, so I'm working on the 'board, next to the open window, listening to the lambs. 30 houses by close of play is a reasonable enough target, not a bad Friday.
permalink Nice.
fourth espresso coming up here.
permalink Are you starting
to vibrate yet?
permalink That doesn't kick in until around the ninth.
....
permalink Like Tiger Woods A-game?
/sorry.
permalink Cornflakes
bottle of Lucozade & some tea

/hangover
permalink That sounds like a hangover being poorly remedied to me.
Where're the pork derived products?
Where's the strong black coffee?
Where's the hair of the dog that bit you?
permalink Up too late to cook sausages
Coffee is for colonials and there'll be Pimms later.
permalink Those colonials don't have everything wrong you know.
Off the top of my head, there's:
- coffee
- In n out burger
- barbecuing
- tonic water
permalink All the colonials I know tend to use gas BBQ's
That's not barbecuing, that's just grilling outdoors.

I'll give you In n Out though.
permalink Trudat about the gas BBQs. Pft.
I've just been reading about the InNOut "secret" menu.
I totally want a 4x4, animal style.
permalink ...
http://supersizedmeals...
permalink Yep,
they won't serve anything more than a 4x4 now, following the bad publicity that accompanied that episode.
They should have had it animal style though.
permalink They do it properly in south africa,
and where we might have a bench at a lay-by or beach they have a braai stand.
permalink i tried lucozade on a hangover once.
Bright orange vomit freaked me out.
permalink Two cups of tea and a glass of orange squash.
Anyone know of any free software/template for preparing a business case/plan thing? A friend wants to start his own company.
permalink Three mugs of coffee
and a bit of Panettone
permalink 2 coffees, a tuna sarnie
and a bottle of blackcurrant Oasis. Lunchtime: pub garden*


*for sitting in, not eating.
permalink Happy Birthday guvnor.
Pub garden well deserved, glad weather is nice, I'm surprised your not in your own garden with a case of ale and little witchy swinging free.
permalink yes... all of this.
.
permalink ta,
that's next week :)
permalink (early) Happy Birthday!
(early) Birthday TOTD: http://youtu.be/oxMJDT...
permalink I think that's the only
bolt thrower video I've ever seen, even back when it came out. Used to have a thing about Jo Bench back when I liked female bassists lots.
thread Turns out there's no right to divorce for unfaithfullness
in the new same-sex marriage bill going through parliament - because government advisers couldn't decide what constituted sex between 2 people of the same sex...

/face-palm
permalink And the definition of "unfaithfulness"
for heteronormative marriage is so clear cut and wonderfully precise that there's no issue whatsoever...

Why does one need to cite a reason for divorce anyway? You don't need to cite a reason to marry, so you should be able to get out of it without giving a reason. I realise that you can always use "irreconcilable differences" but isn't "don't want to be married any more" reason enough?
permalink You don't need one for a no-fault divorce
just one where you want to take the bastard/bitch you gave the best part of your life to for all they're worth.
permalink I didn't think UK law allowed for
no-fault divorce, but it's been ages since I looked into it.

edit: I'm more or less right, I think. It would seem you either need a culpable party, or a two year separation before a divorce can be granted.
permalink The 2 year thing is a no-fault divorce in essence
you don't need a reason, just do the nisi then wait 2 years
permalink From what I've read,
legal types refer to no-fault divorce as being obtainable instantly, whereas the 2-year separation demonstrates irreconcilable differences, which involves no blame, but is not strictly speaking "no fault".
Those darned lawyers and their semantic pedantry...
permalink This is certainly the case in Scotland.
.
permalink when i got a divorce we had to make up a reason
which is fucking childish of the state.. not sure about the 2 year thing..
there is a 5yr not living together rule which makes things slightly less schoolyard he said/she said

i remember reading about an author who had to fake an affair and have a P.I. 'record' it just so she could divorce her husband (who were still on good terms).. that was in the 60's at least it's not that strict now

it's kind of annoying that gays want to get involved in the whole mess
permalink You were married?
Goodness.
permalink a visa thing
so she wouldn't get her head chopped off..
permalink That's an extremely punitive credit card agreement.
On which subject, a colleague of mine has recently discovered that his wife has built up £50k of credit card debts on jointly applied for credit cards that he didn't know they had.
Whoops.
permalink I didn't realise you were an illegal
I'm off to ring the Express
permalink Don't send him back here!

(only joking, Riggers)
permalink I've just booked our registrar
which would have been exciting, but for the woman organising the booking being a wizened McKeith-a-like who clearly has not had a good experience of this particular institution
permalink so what happens in a normal marriage if the partner
cheats with a person of the same sex as them?

in other news, the Race Accross AMerica: Madness
http://www.nytimes.com...
permalink a threesome.
,
permalink Maybe in your normal marriage...
permalink Ha! No.
permalink i like the medical condition
that means you have to have your head tied up, otherwise it flops about like a ragdoll. mentalists.
permalink if you're still playing that F1 game
you might want to pick a track for double points (the canadian one has more laps i think)
permalink I'd forgotten about it
I'll have a look
permalink That does seem pretty crazy.
Although people have told me I'm not allowed to question anyone's sanity any more. Doing this on Saturday:

http://www.sandiego100...

It's my birthday, after all.
permalink You're a nutter.
It'll be quite warm you know.
thread Kings Cross to Newcastle... First Class of course.
Wine on the way.

There are two very odd women across the aisle from me. "Gallus" would be the weegie word. Weirdest combos of clothing, makeup, nail varnish, etc.

One of them is wearing a trouser suit made of floral print curtains in white, pink, red and blue with cyan shoes and dayglo yellow nails.

They're both complaining that their feet are too big for the shoes they like.
permalink you do realise this board except images right?
kind of want to see the trouser suit..
permalink oh it is special!
Not sure how I can sneak a pic without them noticing, but leave it with me.
permalink Here
http://www.spangmagnet...

I have just realised that her companion might well be Gillian "Not-A-Doctor" McKeith... I knew she reminded me of someone, both face and voice...
permalink Trying my best not to burst into the MissPrism/Doghorse classic...
mmmmffffffff!
permalink Sweet jebus!
that is a monstrosity

also, if it is McKeith, try showing her some poo, and see what she has to say
permalink I've been googling images...
it is definitely her, and the freak in the curtain suit is her daughter, Skylar.

What a pair of utter twats.

I'm getting off at Newcastle, so maybe I should just squeeze one out on their table before I leave.
permalink Christ!
permalink I suppose I could just tear a page out of my notebook and scribble her up a doctorate certificate
...it'll be as valid as any others she has...
permalink I already didn't like the woman
but calling her daughter Skylar just adds to the crimes
permalink it's OK...
she looks skeletal, syphilitic and generally raddled.

The daughter looks healthy enough but oddly mannish.
permalink as long as she's not
oddly Manley-ish
permalink A quick search of wikipedia
shows that the oldest person of note to use the name Skylar, was a man born in 1979, who was convicted of a double homicide in 2009 and sentenced to death.

Brief resume follows:

"Skylar Julius Deleon (born John Julius Jacobson, Jr.) is a former American child actor. The son of John Jacobson, Sr., a violent convicted drug dealer, and Lynette Birchette, a drug-addicted teenage runaway who had been abused as a child, Deleon began acting in small parts in commercials as a child.
At age 14, he appeared in the series Mighty Morphin Power Rangers as an uncredited extra in the episode Second Chance. As an adult, Deleon struggled to remember lines, and his career faltered as a result."
permalink "man was once on television"?
.
permalink "man was once on television, then murdered two people"
http://en.wikipedia.or...
permalink I think she's nice looking considering
permalink she is
but an old pic. looks a bit more mannish now.


gorgeous face, mannish body, if that makes sense.

(assuming you're talking about the daughter... the fake-doc-mcKeith looks pox-ridden)
permalink hey, that's not necessarily
a deal breaker

[unlike the parentage]
permalink what's in the
snack bag?
permalink ginsters
...
permalink FUCK!!
KILL IT!!

KILL IT WITH A SPADE!!
permalink i quite like it though,, i'm guessing only amy and me and maybe
prince would wear it

had to look up who you're talking about i guess she ate manley
permalink Me Amy?
I wouldn't wear that if you paid me.

Well. Depends how much you paid me. It's only humiliation.
permalink no YOU jane.
yes i meant you.. it's like wearing pyjamas in public.. the scary thing is that taht outfit probably cost a couple of grand

oh and you might want to watch Secretary if you're into that kind of thing
permalink Up to owt interesting in Newcastle
...or just hanging around waiting for the next train north?
permalink meetings in the morning... 10 till maybe 1 or so?
Not sure when I'll finish.

Then north.

Are you about? Where? When?
permalink Ummm... yes. I was.
Been in Newcastle all day, and just got home. Very little checking of the board (in fact, none) in between me asking and now.
thread Must be time for a new thread . . . .
How many of us wear pyjamas?

Also: TOTN - Savage Republic - Spice Fields - http://youtu.be/cNUYEH...

(I don't own any myself)
permalink Right
so another good band I have never even heard of!

Bloody hell!

Also, "Jamahiriya Democratique et Populaire de Sauvage" is a great name for an album

[edit] I likes this one:

http://www.youtube.com...
permalink Bugger
Spotify only have their new stuff, none of the 80s
permalink Here you go:
http://loveinspurts.bl... (Ceremonial is there anyway . . the rest seem to be dead links)
permalink Why, thank you sir!
*bats eyelashes*
permalink they mostly seem to work
Just Jamihiriya that is broken, alas
permalink wow a blast from the past.. but try this for best cheap-as-chips video
http://www.youtube.com... (and a pretty good tune to go with)

and witchy i saw them recently in and honest to goodness sweaty venue (old blue last) so there are still some around

pyjamas! http://www.youtube.com...
permalink Good tune
and unexpected pale ginger nakedness at the end
permalink it's the best video (besides the knife)
since that fella bumped into people with a rolling stones backdrop
permalink yay for sweaty
venues! I'm disappoint that the Bull&Gate is to become a swanky restaurant :(

also I have that Francobolla tune in my head now.
permalink the mayor of camden* who's quite into music said he wanted to stop places
like the B&G closing

this is an article my mate keith wrote about the B&G.. pretty funny
http://louderthanwar.c...

*yeah i didn't know they had one either
permalink I remember
Bastard Kestrel :)
permalink wow.. your remember that!
oh and sorry about the francobollo tune it's pretty infectious.. i've had it in my head all day and nearly jumped a bin as i sauntered down the street
permalink I sometimes wear pyjamas for sitting about in, watching TV or somesuch
but I rarely wear them in bed.

Off to Heathrow, then a frantic hunt around Hammersmith for a copyshop* to get stuff printed for a meeting, since a twat colleague used the last yellow toner cartridge and didn't bother telling anyone... it ran out when I was still at work at 9 last night trying to print the stuff for this morning. What a selfish cunt, whoever it was.

*not that frantic... I know where it is. Just hope they're not too busy...
permalink Ah... a nice young man called Craig printed my stuff on the spot.
Thankfully a national chain that we have an account with.

Phew. I'm sure you'll all be relieved.
permalink indeed
should have emailed it to them yesterday
permalink That occured to me this morning...
Still... nailed it this morning. Great meeting. Graham Stirk was very complimentary about my sketches. He's one of the guys with his name over the door, so that'll do me. Especially since this sort of sketching is not my strong point.
permalink The future of lighting is saved!

permalink Well, the future of my arse is saved
for the moment.
permalink I was so intent on the tune
that I didn't see the pyjama comment...Riggers clip from Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid now makes MUCH more sense!

And no, I do not wear pyjamas...I'd mostly sleep nekkid. Maybe with some pants & a t-shirt if it is really cold
permalink mr scoff I HAVE IRONED YOUR PEEE JARMAS
permalink Don't worry about my pyjamas!
permalink se senor
BUT I WILL TAKE CARE OF THEEEEEEEEM!
permalink sometimes
but not often, mostly for lounging around on a Sunday morning.
permalink I own a nightshirt, but I sleep naked or in boxers at most.
http://www.flickr.com/...
permalink That is a rather coy look . . . .
. .
permalink Surely that's NSFW
Pass the mindbleach.
permalink I was at work
when it was taken.
permalink jebus
meep can we have a mindbleach button too?
permalink Sometimes I wear pyjama bottoms, never a top.
I'll tend to wear them if we have guests, but they irritate me as soon as they go twisty.

permalink The guests
or the pyjamas?
permalink Both.
`
permalink similarly I find that if I try to sleep naked
I'll have a rude awakening at 3am when I've rolled over and caught a spud under my thigh
permalink that's a terrible mental picture to leave us with.
I'm going to have flappy knackersack nightmares.
permalink tartan flannel pj trousers
are the proud birthright of the British
permalink also, in nominative determinism news
I've just been invited to take part in this
permalink You have to go

it is pre-determined
permalink i have a winston set based on 1984
very shabby chic
permalink When I rule the world
any printer claiming to be for office/professional use will have a tray capacity of one ream.

permalink *reams*
permalink get a shed
permalink We've got one that takes about five reams in its highest capacity tray
yet, whenever someone puts more paper in, they take about half a ream, and put it in.
permalink At my last job people would do that with the ream sized trays
but now I work from home I wouldn't have that problem.

Perhaps the other HP made the tray precisely that "fist full of paper" sized that plebs use.
permalink Two things: anyone in Basildon?
Looks like I'll be spending a bit of time there next month.

Anyone got an audio copy of Feersum Endjinn they could send my way? I bought it through audible, burned it to CD then ripped to mp3 only it turns out that I've got half a book and I can't be arsed going through the rigbyroll again.