Thursday, September 23, 2010

Mövenpick ZRH - Feeling Picky

We last reported from the excellent Swiss Air Senator Lounge. We subsequently found an affable Swiss Immigration official who stepped out of his booth to unlock a door that took us to the exit.

From there we waited for the Mövenpick van in the hotel shuttle area immediately outside the terminal. Would we get a nice room? Would we get a suite?

Not exactly.

The check-in clerk pointed us in the direction of a four-story "annex" across the parking lot. We unlocked the front door, found a small elevator, and wandered down the shabby corridor.

When we arrived at our room, we felt two sensations simultaneously: First, we were back in a college dorm; second, even a Swiss hotel room, especially a west-facing one, can be hot. It was going to be a sleepless night in the small double bed.

We surveyed our options with a couple of phone calls. No, the Holiday Inn Express is booked up tonight. Yes, we could have a room at the Hilton - for $400 (that's a no). No, there are no rooms at the Mövenpick that we can buy up to.

A visit to the front desk resulted in a friendly and sympathetic young duty manager touring us around a couple of other annex rooms, both at least on the other side of the hallway and thus out of the direct sun. She said that we ordinarily wouldn't be in this annex but that for some reason Zurich hotels, including this one, are full at the moment for whatever reason. The room we chose is slightly less dumpy and a few degrees cooler than the original room. We've opened the window and turned on the large fan delivered to our room.

Later we can trudge over to the lobby and discover what 100 Swiss Francs in meal vouchers can buy us - we hope more than a couple of hot dogs.

United Airlines and we may both be victims of the circumstances, but we're keeping our fingers crossed that a half-decent night's sleep will be possible before we board tomorrow morning.


Dennis Warner said...

Travel is full of surprises and sometimes they come in clusters. Fortunately you've had another great trip so bumps are worth it (easy for me to say).

We have fond memories of Switzerland but the word "expensive" does come to mind. Great place to visit though.

Have a good surprise free trip home.

Kathy and Brian said...

We're now back to suspecting that this is a deliberate scam, and we'll follow up out of curiosity. These rooms are called "appartements" and they offer monthly rentals. Perhaps everybody is innocent, but a choice between these really crummy rooms and, say, a better room perhaps an hour's ride away, would have been preferable.