The Spanish painter Salvador Dali travelled regularly with his pet ocelot, and whenever he stayed at Le Meurice in Paris he'd ask staff to catch flies in the nearby Tuileries Garden for the cat’s snacks. Jennifer Lopez won't stay anywhere unless the sheets are made from Egyptian cotton with a thread count of at least 250.
Judging by a recent report compiled by Best Western in the UK, it's not just artists and pop stars that make diva-like demands. The company asked staff across their 280 hotels in the UK to list the weirdest room-service requests they've received from guests.
- A ferret. The guest was attending a small animal fair nearby and didn't want to go alone.
- A ghost. Staff were asked specifically to send a ghost up to the room.
- Spare bed for a doll (a precious porcelain one, apparently. What are you like?).
- A member of staff to comb the guest's hair.
- A sea-salt scrub to remove a botched fake tan job (the guest had applied too much and was looking unnaturally orange. Well, more so than usual).
- A place at breakfast for a religious statue. The guest was a nun and asked staff to carry it back upstairs to her room when she finished her toast.
- A place at the Christmas Day party for a hamster (staff politely declined).
- A meeting room for four people and a bed. No explanation was given.
- A staged wedding fight. The couple-to-be thought it would liven up the ceremony.
- A room with a sea view in Birmingham. Difficult considering the nearest piece of coast is over 100 miles away.
- A ground floor room with space for a motorcycle.
Bizarre as some of those requests are, the Brits have a lot of catching up to do if they want to compete with Americans. A pair of newlyweds staying at New York’s Waldorf Towers wanted the hotel to make life-sized chocolate figures of themselves for their stay. At the Seelbach Hilton, during the Kentucky Derby, a company asked to have a horse and jockey brought to the hotel.
Great Western claim that the most commonly requested items are toothpaste, razors and spare towels, all of which are easily catered for. Unless you're staying in a famously ramshackle establishment in Torquay...
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