**No TripAdvisor contributors were harmed during the review of this hotel**
The reception was soaked in the saccharine banality of a Californian chain hotel. Smile scarred faces were programmed with forced graciousness. Not even spending twenty minutes garrotting my groin in front of the staff, whilst manipulating my passport out of my crotch-hugging fan*y pack could alleviate the sense of clinical charm.
If this was the UK, any receptionist would recoil at having to thumb through my ba*lsweat drenched passport, the pages welded together between Argentinian and Chilean border stamps. Not even a flinch. Not even a look of disdain as my perspiration juices coated her fingers, drying crispy on mixing with the air-con, like little salted packages of Panko breadcrumbs.
The staff were wonderfully courteous but I felt like a transaction. Amex ID AMEX3682587 to be precise. It was almost as if this code was branded to my forehead as I dragged myself from one costed corridor to the next, before entering my room. A room that could have been any other room. In any other hotel. In any other country.
Check-in had been so soul slashing that I locked myself in the vulva-like sanctuary of my cell and began to methodically remove the light fittings and shower curtain hooks, throwing my mattress out of the window on to the ground three floors below just in case the sheer blandness of the hotel became too much during the night. I was on self-imposed suicide watch and I was not prepared to leave the room until something interesting happened. Either that or when I got hungry.
The night passed like a kidney stone and the faint whiff of fried food filled the air like a festering fart. I'd spent most of the night counting spreadsheets and incorporating a fair share of overheads into the cost of a unit of sleep.
Dragging the furniture away from the door, I squeezed into my onesie and padded down the stairs to breakfast.
The breakfast room looked like a war zone. If war involves pancakes being hurled across tables like battered strafe and maple syrup being used as cluster bombs.
The breakfast buffet had been budgeted by a suicidal spreadsheet suit in Tennessee. Each sausage had been cooked just long enough to avoid E-coli without the inefficient use of too much energy to make mastication manageable.
They were watching me. I was being watched. I knew it. My plate was made with the sort of recycled paper that you would get at an austere Greek wedding, whilst my plastic cutlery had been moulded from the mammories of the silicon zombies that strutted along Rodeo Drive. Plastic plates. Plastic knife. Plastic pancake spewed out from the plastic pancake machine like a beige plastic tongue.
I ran. Slowly at first until my maple syrup drenched slippers had stopped sticking to the surface of the floor. Back to the beige bedroom.
I needed to get strong if I was to get through this ordeal. Physically strong. Reaching for the light switch in the bathroom turned off the TV. Those suits had adjusted my room so that every cost based debit activity in the room had to be counter balanced by a credit. Running tap water drops the water in the toilet. Switching on the TV turned off the air-con. Every energy action had an equal and opposite consequence. This room was costed.
There was a notice above the towels. "Any soiling or damage to the towels could lead to a potential penalty up to $X". I was nervous. What if I soiled the towels?!
I felt like slitting my wrists but if I slit my wrists the towels could get covered in blood and my poor family could be hit with a succession of $35 fines. Grabbing my gym kit I ran out into the corridor and promised to get fit and quick.
The gym has some heavily used scales. Used by heavies judging by the pedial depressions in the top of the machine. Sensing that management had surveillance on the scales, I stepped away rapidly. I didn't want my vital statistics being used in some sort of company departmental absorption costing calculation. No way. They weren't having my figures and adjusting my minibar bill based on the results. And anyway, the scales were obviously calibrated incorrectly. All I had eaten for 12 hours was an emaciated sausage, a withered pancake and two glasses of orange juice. According to the scales I'd put on seven dollars.
My nipples ached for a moment of disorder or excitement. Maybe a glimpsed grimace from the receptionist. Or a spot of acid-house in the elevator. Or a stray pube in the stairwell. Oh how I longed for a curly pubic hair, it's wispy frame pirouetting through the air like a ballerina. But alas, the cleaning staff had swept away all the pubes and shovelled them off to that great hairy merkin in the sky, with just enough efficiency to make the stairwell clean but not enough to want to throw down a carpet of carpaccio and munch from the floor like a famished feline.
One day an accountant in Memphis had a vision. His accounting firm designed, costed and costed again to realise LA's premier resort for unsuccessful accountants who cannot afford to upgrade to a different hotel.
There is nothing wrong with this hotel. But there is nothing right. Apart from the location. Which was nice.
Actually the "towel penalty" is wrong.
As several people have stated, it is necessary to bring your own washcloth if you are going to be removing makeup or slitting your wrists. Bizarre. I have never experienced anything like this before anyway. Which is kind of exciting. So I'm giving this hotel 4 stars.
[With the help of my family and friends I have slowly reintegrated myself back into society. I am alive and well].
- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Express Hotel And Suites Hollywood Walk Of Fame
- Holiday Inn Los Angeles
- Los Angeles Holiday Inn
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Experience the Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites in Hollywood, CA. Located in the heart of world-famous Hollywood, California, our uniquely designed hotel appeals to style-oriented guests desiring exceptional service and comfortable amenities. During your stay at the Holiday Inn Express Hollywood, take time to tour the city and see all that Hollywood has to offer. We are centrally located near several historic tourist attractions such as the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Hollywood Bowl, Universal Studios, Paramount Studios, Sunset Strip, Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, Bel Air, Santa Monica and Venice Beach. Our hip hotel in Hollywood is the perfect place to stay as you explore the city. Built in 2008, our brand new Hollywood hotel is perfect for business travelers. We provide an alternative to local, traditional hotels without sacrificing any of the business amenities you expect. Our Hollywood hotel near the Los Angeles Airport (LAX) is just 20 min from the LA Convention Center and in close proximity to the LA Business District, the Century City Business District, ABC, NBC, the Warner Center and CNN. At the Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites in Hollywood, CA, we provide an oasis that inspires and re-energizes travelers. From our hip lobby and state-of-the-art fitness center to the convenient high-speed Internet access and a delicious, free hot breakfast bar, this Hollywood hotel provides all the amenities to make your trip to California a great one. ... more less
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