Techno Averse Hotels?
By Vijay Dandapani
Tuesday, 25th March 2008
Travelmole reports that some hotels are blacklisting internet, phones and BlackBerries. The article names two hotels The Arawak Beach Inn on the posh island of Anguilla invites travelers to relive the days of the so-called "Dark Ages" with its "Isolation Vacation and the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers is urging travelers to lock up their PDA's and participate in the BlackBerry Detox Challenge.

While Anguilla may be an ideal locale for guests who may choose to luxuriate in a faux-cave setting by jettisoning all means of communication, Chicago seems ill-suited for such an exercise.

The Arawak promo notes that "Tech junkies looking to go cold turkey will be blacklisted and unable to purchase or have access to an Internet connection at the resort (bribes not accepted)." For a price of $999 the resort notes that "BlackBerries and laptops will be kept under lock and key upon arrival if guests were not able to leave their electronic security blankets at home. The office will be unable to reach guests as there are no phones in the room."

The Sheraton's $199 package offers a "BlackBerry Detox program (that) offers the first person to lock away their portables for two days a complimentary return three-night stay and dinner at Shula's Steak House. All who check-in their BlackBerry will be given a walking map to actually SEE the city, as opposed to being in the head-down BlackBerry position."

While both properties managed to garner headlines for the initiatives, it would be interesting to see how many takers there are for the packages. The unfortunate (depending upon one's perspective) that communication tools are going to be necessary almost anywhere in the world as this article on Mount Everest notes the advent of cell phone coverage on the world's tallest peak.

Vijay is Chief Operating Officer and part-founder of Apple Core Hotels- a chain of 5 midtown Manhattan hotels offering value and comfort in the heart of the city.Member of the board of Directors - Hotel Association of New York. www.vijaydandapani.com

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