Reasons on Whether a Traveler Should Stay in an Apartment, Not a Hotel

In my travels this year -- to Argentina, Uruguay, Peru and lately Colombia -- I have almost always stayed in hotels while on the road.

This week, however, I’m staying in an apartment not associated with a hotel.  It’s owned by a Colombian named Juan who also owns two apartments that are rented long-term and a country hotel with five rooms near the local airport.

Here Are My Top Ten Reasons to Stay in an Apartment and Not a Hotel...

10.  I’m saving about $15 a day compared to the fancy full-service hotel next door.

9.  I can sleep whenever I want to without having to be concerned with daily cleaning by the hotel housekeeping.

8.  I can heat food here.  Most hotels I have stayed at this year provide a small fridge or mini-bar, but no in-room microwave or stove.

7.  Nobody else has been using the swimming pool.  No kids splashing me, no loud music playing, really peaceful.

6.  The apartment is much larger than the typical hotel room I’ve stayed  at this year.

5.  There’s a second bathroom, which I’m using to dry out my swimming stuff.  You might have other uses for a second bathroom for your family or group.  There’s also a second bedroom.

4.  The refrigerator is much larger than the typical mini-bar fridge.

3.   No big lobby or long hallways to negotiate en route to the apartment.  Just an easy ride up to the 7th floor.

2.  There’s a kitchen with lots of countertop space.

And the #1 reason to stay in an apartment instead of a regular hotel while traveling....

1.  There’s a mirror in each bathroom.  That’s it..  I don’t have to keep “running into” my mirror image every time I walk between rooms or head out the door.

cccmedia, on the road in Armenia, Colombia

Now let’s look at why it might be worth the extra $15 a night to stay at a hotel, not the apartment.

The relevant hotel in this case is the one next door to the apartment -- the Allure Aroma Mocawa in Armenia, Colombia.  The city is pronounced Ar-MEHN-ee-ah, by the way.  I stayed for six nights at the Mocawa hotel on a trip earlier this year.

Top Reasons to Stay at a Hotel, Not an Apartment

10.  There’s a phone in the hotel room that I can use to make outgoing calls.  At the apartment, I have had to leave the building and cross the street to visit a phone-call shop in order to make even a local call.

9.  You can get an excellent massage on the 6th floor of the hotel without having to leave the building.

8.  It’s handy to have hotel room service for those times when you don’t want to leave the room or deal with delivery issues of outside eateries.

7.  It’s a lively, festive scene at the hotel pool, even with the occasional splasher-kids.

6.  The jacuzzi at the hotel works.  The one at the apartment complex pool is en mantenimiento and won’t be in service for another month, if then.

5.  The Mocawa rooms are beautifully decorated.  The apartment apparently had pictures on the walls, but they’ve been taken down, just leaving the hooks.

4.  If I don’t like the view or there’s a problem with my hotel room, I can typically move to another room.

3.  The Mocawa rooms have DirecTV with an on-screen program guide.  I can watch the political show “”With All Due Respect” on the Bloomberg channel .. or -- in season -- Sunday and Monday night NFL football.  The apartment has basic cable with Spanish-language programing.

2.  The hotel’s key-card is easy to use and provides extra security by limiting elevator access to guest floors.  The old-fashioned apartment key does work, but it’s a clumsy fit -- especially seeking the keyhole after dark with the lighting cutting on and off.

And the #1 reason to stay at the hotel....

1.  The Mocawa has a sophisticated in-room lighting system that is readily accessed from my favorite side of the bed. 

cccmedia from Eje Cafetero, Colombia

I often like both combined in aparthotels which are becoming more and more prevalent.  You get the best of both worlds!

New topic

Find useful info to succeed in your expat project