Every supplier with miles on the clock knows the feeling. You check into a mid-market hotel on the fringes of a nothing town, chosen for its convenience for your client’s HQ.
But your stay turns out to be brief. Maybe 40 or 50 minutes. Long enough for that sinking sensation to take hold as you realise this space is not one you wish to wake up in before going out to run a three-day workshop or a training programme, nor to come back to at night, alone, with just the outputs of the day to organise, ready for the next.
The last time that happened to me was a couple of years back in a Travelodge in Northampton. I had a bunch of reasons for abruptly checking out – windows that didn’t open, grubby surfaces, nasty toiletries, poor-quality bedding – but among them was the fact that I could. I was at liberty, as a paying customer, to settle up for the first night booked, cancel the others and give my reasons to the front desk. "Well, it’s mostly a place for builders," was the memorable response.