A well-endowed company was kind enough to invite me to speak at a conference in Arizona recently.
They put me up at the Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain, which is a luxury resort built in the middle of a desert.
They gave me the key to my “room,” which I soon discovered was actually a suite.
I didn’t get to spend too much time in the suite, unfortunately, because the conference was great.
But I certainly enjoyed the time I did spend there!
But that's because they've gone with the native architecture and native landscaping thing. (Which is much appreciated. Golf courses look ridiculous in this environment. So would typical luxury resorts).
I stayed in 1605. I didn't notice the doorbell the first time I arrived. It would have told me a lot.
And, yes, aha, there is the bed! It's in a whole different room! And it comes with its own SEPARATE patio!
Your private patio and cacti are separated from other guests' private patios and cacti by tasteful partitions. And rocks.
If you spend some time lounging on your private patio (OK, I did), you'll get to watch your mountain view change as the weather changes. That's cool.
The light switch on the bedside light is hard to operate. First, it's hard to figure out where it is. (You'll be fondling the bulb and cord, feeling for the switch). When you finally spot the switch on the base and press it, moreover, the whole lamp base pushes backward, from the force of your push. Not a Ritz-Carlton quality user experience!
But what we really need to talk about is the bathroom. You see, the bathroom we saw in the hall is not actually THE bathroom. That was a GUEST bathroom. That was the bathroom that, say, the head of a major corporation would use if you were having a private meeting with him or her in the living room portion of your suite. You, meanwhile, would use YOUR bathroom. THE bathroom. And the first thing you'll notice when you walk into THE bathroom is that it's bigger than many New York apartments.
The shower is separate from the bath, of course. It's all stone and glass. And it's next to the dedicated bathroom art.
Of course, you don't want to hang out in the shower too long. Because on the stone washroom wall (two sinks, naturally) is a sign reminding you that you're in the desert and that consuming water in the desert is violently profligate. But the Ritz offers you the opportunity to feel good by doing your part--by not insisting that they wash every one of your 8-10 towels ever day.
They give you a whole array of toiletries to look at while you're there and then take home for your kids.
See that drain? When you arrive, the drain is closed. This, presumably, is because someone on the Ritz-Carlton hospitality staff team has decreed that it is more convenient to arrive at your sink and find the drain closed. I am going to quibble with the Ritz hospitality guru here. I actually think it would be more convenient to arrive at my sink(s) and find the drain(s) open. But we'll agree to disagree.
The maid service, by the way, is predictably top-notch. When I finished brushing my teeth and shaving, of course, I left my toothbrush and toothpaste and razor just lying any old way. And when I returned to my room, I found that the Ritz staff had organised them and placed them on a towel. They've never looked so arranged!
They turn the fire pit on in the evenings. (It's gas-powered, of course--no messy and unpredictable wood).
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