Here’s a tip – in my view the best room in a hotel isn’t the suite with sweeping views or the one with the stand alone bath tub. It’s the Club Lounge.
Travel is about the experience and there’s nothing that will de-stress the experience—or make it feel more memorable—than a little extra pampering. Whether it be a glass of champagne, a breakfast cooked to order, or a comfy couch and a bite to eat after a loooong day, we all want to feel a little special. And when you are staying in a five star hotel, all you need is that special key – to the club floor.
When I book a hotel with a club level floor (also known as concierge level or executive floor), I always feel like I’ve been let into a secret member’s club complete with gourmet food, the best wines and interesting fellow travelers.
Think of it as a “hotel within a hotel”.
These perks come at an extra price – usually around 20 to 30 percent extra on the cost of your room. But when you do the maths, this ends up being a good deal – especially for single travelers, business travelers and families. Some hotel chains upgrade loyalty scheme members to Club Floors or you can use points to upgrade.
Here are the reasons why I love a Club Floor:
- You are guaranteed breakfast – usually a buffet with cold cuts and the option of hot dishes including eggs – and evening cocktails. Add to that snacks and drinks throughout the day (who hasn’t returned from a day out and about and craved a cold drink and a place to put your feet up?) plus evening cocktails and canapes.
2. You can also expect an exclusive check in area where the staff whisk away your passport and allow you to unwind after a long flight.
3. They are a world unto themselves with added perks. Expect TVs, a library and also an area with computers and a printer. Some lounges have stunning terraces and views while others are more cosy. I’ve stayed at hotels where these rooms offer faster wifi as well as airport transfers, free laundry items and daily newspapers. In resorts, they often offer private pool areas.
4. As a single, mostly leisure traveler, I always pay the extra for a Club Floor room and access. It’s a safe and quiet place to retreat to and the food is almost always top notch. If I don’t feel like heading out at night, it’s a great option for snacks and a drink.
5. For business travelers, the perks are obvious – with many added extras included, the bottom line is well and truly taken care of. This includes being able to entertain guests with a pre dinner drink or host a meeting in the small board room many of these floors are equipped with.
6. They are work friendly. Even for humble bloggers like myself – spaces for all kinds of needs.
7. The rooms are always slightly larger, better equipped and well located within the hotel.
I recently had a sneak peek at the renovated Club Lounge at Ritz Carlton Doha along with my friend and fellow blogger Karen Nicolet whose blog Clumsy Chic is my go-to for fashion, lifestyle, travel and well everything.
She is also a fabulous photographer and this is the first in a series of collaborations. I couldn’t think of a better start – the club floor is truly unique and exemplified why this concept can really amplify your hotel stay.
With a kitchen – serving up freshly cooked risotto and dumplings – at its heart and several areas to relax or meet fellow guests, it’s one of the best I have experienced.
The Ritz Carlton promise is five food and beverage presentations a day (including n afternoon tea spread) in its Club Floors and they work hard to set themselves apart with their offering. In Doha, they have a Pearl Omelette – harking back to its seafaring days. Stuffed with oysters, it’s lush and creamy.
Meanwhile the new floor offers some excellent wines and cheeses and even a rotating menu of local experiences including Qatari dishes.
Open 24 hours for Club Floor guests, it also offers chocolate and cordials every evening well as “To Go” snacks and beverages throughout the day.
The Ritz Carlton Doha is a landmark property in Doha and has recently undergone a stunning renovation of its rooms, suites, spa and its Club Floor. The result as a far cry from the chintz and outdated floral rooms it used to host.
Like the rooms, the Club Floor is seriously chic yet plush – muted colors, contemporary stylings, exquisite finishings and the odd touch of Qatari flair.
For more ways to ensure you have the best stay possible in a hotel or resort, check my travel hacks series here.
You can also find out more about the Ritz Carlton Doha’s renovation and rooms here.