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[there is no F in hotel]
hotel collection bathroom accessories
Image by RHiNO NEAL
Above is one of the very standard hotel rooms that we stayed in on our road trip through France. It was a loved ones run hotel with an superb restaurant, serving traditional French cuisine.

I have to say that we stayed in some fantastic hotels, but a couple of real dumps as effectively.

The day just before we left the UK we stayed in the Goodwood Park Hotel, which is a lovely English Hotel, offering wonderful service and the small luxuries that I genuinely like.

I know it is a bit lame, but I come about to like the Molton Brown Accessories that are in the bathroom. I like the way that the toilet rolls have the edges folded into a point (whoever thought of that ??). I like the huge bed (not too keen on 12 diverse pillows although), I like the chocolate cookies and the neighborhood mineral water on the bedside table, I like the Full English breakfast of local charcuterie and free of charge range eggs. I like the fact that the Maid comes in and turns down the bed in the evening, and the truth that she sprays lavender mist onto our pillows for a restful sleep, and leaves the rest of the bottle for our use later.

I never know about you, but I can not manage to turn my own bed down at evening. Those duvets are truly heavy.

I like all that stuff – I know I spend for it in the room price tag, but if you are going to stay in a hotel, you could as nicely do it effectively.

Now in France, we discovered some fantastic hotels, but there is one chain of hotels that I will not be patronising again.

I am fascinated by company models that work as a brand, so although we were on our road trip I suggested that for a single night we attempt F1 hotels as they are an economy brand providing a hotel service for the traveller.

I thought it would be like the ‘Easy’ brand (I really like what Stelios does). Inexpensive, but wonderful value none the less. Sadly it was an knowledge that I by no means want to repeat.

They do rooms for 36 euros, but no family members rooms (unless you are a household of 3). So we needed to have two rooms, costing 72 euros. If you compare this with a family room at a Travelodge in the UK, which charges about £50, and has en-suite, it is not a excellent deal.

When you then take into account what you get for the money – it is a genuinely poor deal.

The rooms are not en-suite. I gave up asking for hotel rooms with en-suite in about 1980, as I did not know there were rooms that did not have bathrooms any longer – sadly F1 have them. Get in touch with me a snob, but I never like walking down the corridor with a toilet roll in my hand, and queuing to use the toilet.

The doors to the rooms have no keys. There are large keypads outside, and when you enter your four digit code, a deadbolt ‘clunks’ across to let you in your space. It reminded me of what a high safety prison may possibly be like.

The F1 brand is simple – If it have been any far more basic, it would be breaking the Geneva Convention.

I half expected to see Prime Minister Gordon Brown in reception at breakfast time, after he had negotiated my early release.

The towels that have been supplied in the rooms had been like tea towels – tiny, and flat, with no pile at all. I reckon I could have folded one up and place it in my trouser pocket without having seeking like I was pleased to see anyone. We all laughed a lot about the towels.

The carpet had suspicious stains, and the mattress had a really worrying collection of enormous black stains on it that looked like the final resident had died in bed and not been discovered for 3 weeks. The underlying smell in the room didn’t do anything to dispel this impression.

The Television didn’t work, neither did the air conditioning, and it was 38 degrees.

I am well conscious it is ‘Horses for Courses’, and F1 hotels are wonderful for back packers who want a low-cost space during travelling, but I found the brand to be simple, but not pleasant.
Bearing in mind we paid almost 80 euros for this such as breakfast and the next night we got an Ibis Hotel with air con, large beds, en-suite, satellite television, breakfast, and a swimming pool, for 90 euros you can see how undesirable worth F1 was for us.

My little ones, who are generally excited about staying in any sort of hotel, and don’t be concerned about the facilities in fact begged me not to go to another F1 on our travels.
When they were playing up on the trip, I employed the threat of staying at an F1 to get them to behave….. it worked.

We are just a single family staying in one particular of the several F1 hotels. I am sure it suits lots of other demographics other than us – but our experience was not excellent.

Take me back to the Goodwood Park in the UK – I am missing the lavender mist.

I should add that this is my personal impression of F1 hotels, and I am certain that they have lots of happy clients. Some of what I have written (Geneva Convention / Gordon Brown) is just meant to be amusing and not meant to offend any person. I also do not intend to offend any French men and women, as I would be the 1st to admit that we have sufficient terrible hotels of our own in the UK.

[there’s no F in hotel]
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