Weird hotel spotting

00:18, Jul 27 2012

As it may already be clear, I'm all about the photo opportunity.

Anything a bit out of the ordinary, I'm certain that I'm going to need a picture to remember it by.

It's funny because in ordinary circumstances I'm not that keen to be caught on camera, but send me overseas and suddenly I'm calling for my closeup. Any movie site, famous place, dressed-up character, cute street, restaurant, laundromat, or teepee we've come across, you can bet I've refused to move until Nathan has captured the moment.

Those poster boards where you stick your head through the hole and rest it on the cartoon body are gold, and I've kicked a number of kids off them so I can have a turn (particularly embarrassing when my head doesn't actually fit through the hole).

Visiting places with strange names is a guaranteed photo shoot on the side of the road, our trip to Hell specifically designed for that, and unusual hotels fill the same purpose.

Bizarre accommodation was such an exciting prospect to me that I originally tried to plan our US trip around visiting some of those places. However, when I went in hunt of wacky and wonderful hotels, I realised that, location-wise, that was not going to work out.

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The only one I've actually made it to is The Jane in New York's West Village. The hotel is entirely ship-themed, with staff in costume and rooms shaped (and sized) like ship cabins. There were bunk bed rooms to provide accommodation for couples, and I was all set to go with that option until I heard about the Captain's Cabin. Unable to resist the urge to be in charge, we upgraded. 

This place wasn't just novelty either, it had the history to go with the story. It's been around since 1908, was the place where the Titanic survivors stayed during the inquest into the ship's sinking, and was where surviving crew members held a memorial service four days after the disaster.

While the history is cool, it is not the main thing I'm after with crazy accommodation - like I said, it's the photos. Among the most hilarious I've come across is the Dog Bark Inn, a hotel in Idaho that is a two-story Beagle-shaped hotel - apparently with a giant hydrant-shaped restroom. There is also an under-the-sea hotel in Florida, a cave hotel in New Mexico, and a converted jail in Boston that is conveniently called Liberty Hotel.

Outside the US I've heard of heaps of other amazing ones. I've always wanted to stay at one of those treehouse hotels in Thailand, and at least see that capsule hotel in Tokyo. During my internet wanderings I came across this German hotel, Propeller Island City Lodge, which has a variety of strange concept rooms, including one with a slanted roof to make it seem as though the bed is flying, and another with coffin beds.

Has anyone stayed at one of these places? Don't you want to?

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