The best hotel is a place to relax, recharge and reset. But with a wealth of accommodations that run the gamut from cozy boutique hotels to historic grande dames, it can be daunting to narrow down the options to find one that truly deserves your hard-earned money. That’s where hotel reviews come in handy.
With 92 percent of leisure travelers deeming online hotel reviews “somewhat important” or “very important,” it’s no wonder that hotels spend so much time and effort on garnering positive feedback from guests. But not all review sites are created equal. Some specialized review sites cater to a specific niche, helping businesses connect with the people most interested in their services. For example, hospitality and travel review site Forbes Passport offers luxury travelers a curated selection of hotels that surprise and delight them with over-the-top service, all-star amenities and comfortable spaces to rest.
A trusted name in the business, TripAdvisor has earned the moniker of the 900-pound gorilla of hotel review sites. Its 661 million reviews of hotels, airlines and experiences have made it a popular choice for travelers. But despite its size, TripAdvisor has an Achilles’ heel: it doesn’t require that you have a verified booking to submit and publish a review, which has led to many fraudulent postings.
In response, some hotels have started to verify guest reservations before allowing their reviews to be posted on TripAdvisor. For hoteliers, this provides an opportunity to address customer issues before they become a problem, improving the overall guest experience.
Another major player is Google, which has been making moves to take on TripAdvisor by integrating its Hotel Finder into search results and highlighting hotel pricing and availability options when you do a search on the web. However, like TripAdvisor, Google doesn’t require a verified reservation to post a review, leading to plenty of fraudulent posts.
Lastly, there’s the HTI (HotelTesting Inc) hotel-ranking site, which assigns hotels a rating of one to five pearls after professional journalists anonymously critique them using 70 “dimensions.” The ratings are supplemented by photos and other information about the properties, including details on rooms, facilities, level of service and restaurants.
For luxury travelers who are in search of the perfect place to call home for a few nights, look no further than New York City. With the enticing promise of Fifth Avenue’s luxury shopping and Manhattan’s finest cultural institutions, this sophisticated city has a hotel to suit every taste. For the ultimate in urban escapes, check into The Pierre, a storied landmark that exudes timeless elegance. Or, for an unforgettable stay with a decidedly modern twist, opt for the sleek and sophisticated Mandarin Oriental, which seamlessly marries contemporary elegance with Asian-inspired touches. Located in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, the hotel is a quick stroll to Central Park and Fifth Avenue’s upscale shopping.