We took a vacation last week to Tofino, BC, last week. The Tofino part was great, and I’ll write about that later this week when I scan in some photos.
On the way back, we spent two days in Victoria, BC. The city rocks; however our room at the Hotel Douglas had some unique undocumented bonus features that made it a memorable part of our stay.
- Automatic intruder detection — thanks to the highly squeaky floor, everybody in the hotel knew when someone got up in the middle of the night to attend to a vital bodily function.
- Designer windows — the bathroom had curtains covering full-length windows right next to the toilet. The windows overlooked the null tubule encircled by other rooms. I’m not sure what the intention was. (I hope Debbie can help speculate.)
- Self-spraying floor — another curiosity of the bathroom was the lack of any barrier between the “shower” and the rest of the bathroom. In fact, the shower head was one of those nifty movable wand thingies, affixed to the wall such that it would initially spray outward, usually on dry clothes. I availed myself of washroom down the hall.
- Surround sound — there was a lounge downstairs that had nightly concerts beginning around 9pm. As the alcohol flowed, the music became loud enough to prevent me from falling asleep, but not loud enough to discern lyrics. I think I heard at least one Neil Diamond song where the crowd joined in. The main room windows overlooked an open area behind above and behind buildings on the block. One of these buildings was a club emanating weird, rhythmic music interrupted by the occasional shattering glass bottle. The two sound sources were incompatible.
- Energy conserving lighting — the central room light, one of those awful office-style recessed, fluorescent fixtures, flickered briefly when turned on. We had to play with the switch for a few minutes before it juiced itself up. Speaking of which…
- Child-proof light switches — as in “wired so down was on and up was off.” I had my oldest going for a while when I said “Canada uses the metric system, so electricity works differently.”
- Satellite parking — the official parking option was a “parkade” about three blocks away. (Although this was a lot closer than the parking I initially found, the signage implied very bad things would happen to my vehicle if left after closing. Thankfully nothing did.)
- The Wonkavator — The elevator had that “built in 1912″ feel to it as it grudgingly carried us to within 1.5” of our floor, each time ending its journey with a defiant lurch. The doors’ sensor had a 92-year-old’s vision as it tried to take out my kids.
- Laundry conservation — We spent the day exploring Victoria. When we returned at 5pm, our room was still uncleaned, but the maid cart was in the hallway. When we returned after dinner, the maid cart was gone, but the room was still skanky. They had also neglected to clean the washroom down the hall. The lobby staff shrugged it off, but was able to procure another set of towels. There was no attempt to comp us.
It’s possible we had a confluence of bad experiences, but I cannot recommend The Hotel Douglas.