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Offbeat

Cheesy Hotel Stuff We Love

We're not ashamed to admit it. We love a blue cocktail at check-in, chocolates at turn-down and even those Swan-shaped towels on the pillow. Kathryn O'Shea-Evans rounds up the throwback hotel extras that never get old.

See recent posts by Kathryn O'Shea-Evans

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Hotel Stationery

Admit it: You get a thrill every time you steal a hotel pen and pad, even though they’re most likely included in your rate. That’s because every time we use them—even just to dash off a to-do list—it brings us right back to that room, far, far away from our real lives.

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A Fruity Cocktail or Cookies at Check-In

Call us déclassé, but we love a freebie. The best hotels in the world know how to get your vacation started right, with a “Welcome! Glad to Have you!” treat the minute you walk through the lobby doors. A fruity cocktail? Cookie? Freshly made margarita AND a 15-minute scalp massage? We'll take it all.

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Chocolates at Turn Down

Few hotels do the sweets-at-turndown thing anymore, in favor of a bottle of water. Perhaps they all received angry letters from the American Dental Association. But we’ll always love a tiny nibble of chocolate before bed, especially at the end of a long night. Bonus points if its made by a local chocolatier.

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Animal-Shaped Towels

Yes, towel bars in the bathroom may be a tad more sophisticated but who doesn't love returning from the beach to find a white terrycloth elephant or swan snoozing on their bed? They melt our cheesy heart.

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Hotel Dog (or Duck)

We’ve met a number of hotel “canine ambassadors” (Fairmont employs dozens of four-legged hosts). And along with Fido, there are even ducks at hotels like the Peabody in Memphis, where mallards bathe in the lobby fountain. For us, fur count beats thread count every time—there’s just nothing more welcoming than a pet.

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Late-Night Room Service

There’s a 50% chance that whatever you order will arrive late and lukewarm, and a 98% chance it’ll be overpriced. But we’ll never, ever turn down room service—because is there anything better than a late-night burger and fries in bed? Nope.

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Origami-style Toilet Paper

We’ve never met an Airbnb host who gets toilet paper right, even if he springs for the quilted stuff. That’s because those hard-working hotel housekeepers make it look like origami, which makes us feel like we're the first and only ones to ever use that bathroom.

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The Dapper Bellhop

We schlepped our bags from home to the airport, from the airport to the hotel, and now—by God—we can't schlep another second. Enter the bellhop. When he smiles and takes our luggage (freedom!), we think one thing: LET THE VACATION BEGIN.

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Butlers for Everything

We’ll never be able to afford a full-time butler. But we're not opposed to splurging for a short-time one when on vacation. If you can't appreciate a hot coffee delivered to your room (without having to call) and the day’s paper in-hand, then there's something wrong with you.

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