Cut to the Quick
Travel Blog • Alexander Basek • 02.03.09 | 11:34 AM ET
Where’s my cheap rate? Price cuts at hotels are not as common as you’d think these days. Many properties are afraid that when the economy bounces back, they won’t be able to raise their rates to pre-econopocalypse levels. So, the savings come in the form of add-ins: hello, bottle of cheap champagne that’s a “$30 value”! Hotels in warm destinations—where they count on Northeast winters slowly driving locals insane—are notorious for this little game.
The flip side is the rate cuts are plentiful in destinations that aren’t typical winter holiday hot spots. Take Bangkok, where prices were falling last year thanks to a low-level hum of bad news and unrest at the airport. Couple that with the economic downturn and voila! Specials like the COMO Metropolitan Bangkok is offering: a $260 a night room for $99. Similarly, rooms at the LeBua at State Tower, another luxury property with great views of Bangkok (and balconies!) prices out to $140 a night over a weekend in March with a 30 percent discount offer. Even the Four Seasons is $200 a night with a system-wide third-night-free deal. Yes, there are cheaper hotels in Bangkok, but the value for these prices is staggering. When I stayed at the LeBua last fall, the staff was so eager to please they would have wheeled me to my room on a hand truck if I had let them.
Of course, Bangkok is a tougher weekend getaway than St. Croix, but what’s the matter with a little jetlag on vacation?