Theatre: 10 Ways to Maximize Your Per Diem on Tour

Theatre: 10 Ways to Maximize Your Per Diem on Tour

Touring is one of the best ways to make money in theater. Your per diem is nontaxed money in addition to your salary which you can use any way you want, which means you can bank the extra each week. Here are my tips for maximizing your per diem so you can add to your salary each week:

 

  1. Get a roommate

Hotels on tour are already pretty cheap with the group rate. But if you get a roommate and split the cost, the room is even cheaper and can save you $350 that week. If you’re not a fan of the double beds, consider getting a 2 bedroom in extended stay accommodations like a Residence Inn or the Oakwood in LA. The room rate might be more expensive but if you compare it to the studio rate, it might actually work out to be less and you’ll still have your privacy.

I stayed in a 2 bedroom/2 bath at the Oakwood in LA
  1. Stay in the Cheapest Option

Obviously, choosing the cheapest option is your best bet to save you money. If you’re on a Production Tiered tour and the options are around the same price, it might seem like either option is good EXCEPT when you consider the Housing Cap (which is paid out every 13 weeks). The cheapest option is this case will actually save you even MORE when you add in each night you stay there.

Aloft was the cheapest option in Durham & it was brand new!
  1. Shop Around

In some cities, tours have a hard time finding affordable options. So try AirBnb or even other hotels and you might find a great deal. AirBnb has so many options and if you really want to save money, considering sharing a room or getting your own room instead of the whole place to yourself. My friend paid off her mortgage by sharing rooms for $40/night.

I found a cheaper place in Seattle on Vacasa.com
  1. Stay with Friends and Family

This is really the cheapest way to save money. Even if you have to travel 30 minutes, your rental car will still be cheaper than a whole week in a hotel.

 

  1. Always get your points

ALWAYS add your rewards points. Even if your hotel is paid for by the company. This will come in handy when you want to take your own trips or even if you want to redeem points for a closer hotel, etc. plus you’ll gain status very quick which means upgrades and free things like bottled water and snacks. Don’t forget to add your frequent flier miles to your flights too!

 

  1. Get a travel credit card

There are so many options when it comes to travel credit cards but the one thing that they have in common is extra points when you pay for hotels, flights and even gas stations. If you’re pretty loyal, a specific hotel or airline is a good bet otherwise the Amex Platinum or Chase Sapphire are good general travel cards and come with great perks as well.

 

  1. Go to the Grocery Store

Food is the #2 expense to your per diem. If you want to save money (and your waistline), consider taking a trip to the grocery store the first day you arrive in each city. You’ll save a lot of money if you can get creative with the microwave or even just for snacks. If you’re a big drinker, consider getting your booze here rather than the hotel bar. Trader Joe’s is one of my favorites as all locations are consistent and their frozen products are easy and delicious.

  1. Don’t go to the bar

This might be one of the hardest things to do on the road as theater people, especially stagehands. But how many times have you gone out and ordered rounds of shots for everyone and ended up with a $100 bill at the end of the night? You can be just as social grabbing your alcohol from the 7-11 and drink in the hotel lobby as you are at the bar and it will save you a lot of money.

 

  1. Don’t forget to budget!

I have been a huge culprit of being a little irresponsible with my cash and avoiding a budget but it can save you a lot if you keep a budget and watch where your money is going.

 

  1. Invest the rest

The best way to maximize your money is to invest it. If you have extra per diem, this is the perfect time to invest or even better, add to your retirement account. You’ll be grateful for it later.

Per Diem Pinterest graphic

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How to Shop at Trader Joe’s on the Road

How to Shop at Trader Joe’s on the Road

Trader Joe’s has a major cult following and I’m definitely one of them. I became a fan of them in college due to their cheap prices BUT it has also come in handy on the road where I can stock up on frozen foods to heat up in my hotel room. I have been known to arrive in a new city and head to Trader Joe’s right away. Here are some of my faves:

 

Frozen Foods

They’ve got a huge selection of frozen meals that you can easily heat up in your hotel microwave. Cult faves include their guilt free Mac and cheese and Indian food.

Indian Food
Trader Joe’s makes amazing Indian food. So much so that I rarely ever order Indian because I can get it cheaper at Trader Joe’s. I love their Paneer Tikka Masala for a vegetarian option but it’s all good. The Naan doesn’t have microwave instructions but I’ve made it work in a pinch if I really need it to go with my meal.

Frozen Fruit
If you’re a fan of smoothies, they have a great frozen fruit selection to throw in yours. I like the Very Cherry blend.

Cheese
Trader Joe’s has an amazing cheese spread and I have been known to make a cheese & charcuterie plate for dinner. My favorite is the Unexpected Cheddar (which was just voted Favorite Cheese in TJ’s Annual Customer Choice Awards) but I don’t know that I’ve ever had a bad cheese from TJ’s.

Hard Boiled Eggs
TJ’s sells a bag of pre-hard boiled eggs. This is a great item for a grab and go breakfast.

Snacks
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
These are O.M.G. delicious. I’m a sucker for peanut butter AND dark chocolate plus the upgrade on Reese’s isn’t terrible. You can either get them in the plastic containers or a smaller “snack” pack which is usually around the registers.

Dried Fruit & Nuts


I’m obsessed with TJ’s Dried Fruit. Not only is it delicious, but it’s also so much cheaper than you can get anywhere else. I’m obsessed with their Dried Mango – it’s only $2.99 compared to $6.99 most other places.

Vegetarian
I have to include TJ’s Soy Chorizo just because it’s one of their most amazing products and even meat lovers have enjoyed my creations with this product. Now I’ve never used it in the microwave but am considering an experimentation. My usually go-to requires a hot plate so is best for an extended-stay style hotel.

On the Shelves

Coconut Oil
It’s no secret that Coconut Oil is trending (or even past trending) right now. But that’s because it’s an incredibly versatile product and therefore is a fantastic product to travel with. Not only can you use it in cooking (replacing olive oil, butter, you name it), you can also use it as a moisturizer, makeup remover, lip balm, you name it.

Ghee
I also love to carry ghee as an alternative to coconut oil for cooking. Since it’s basically unrefrigerated butter, it tastes amazing on bread and is perfect for my go to breakfast of eggs on avocado toast.

Raw Honey
In addition to their standard Raw Honey, TJ’s carries a local raw honey which is supposed to help with allergies. For the first year of traveling, I constantly had allergies due to exposure to new plants and flowers. Local raw honey is a great product to pick up to prevent allergies.

Protein bars
TJ’s has a great selection of protein bars. I love Larabars and Epic Bars for a Paleo-friendly dose of protein but they’ve also got GoMacro Bars (peanut butter chocolate chip is my fave). These are great to have on hand when you’re traveling.

Trader Joe's Pinterest Trader Joe's Pin

Backpacking Through Europe – Then and Now

Backpacking Through Europe – Then and Now

 As I mention fairly often, in 2008 I backpacked through Europe with a good friend of mine.

With Jill
With Jill

Now that I am older and have more financial resources (aka a job), I thought it’d be fun to dream about how I would do it differently. Here we go:

 

The Flight

Then: Air India in Economy to London

Now: Focus more of air miles since I’m all about those points! I’d also consider flying Icelandair for a free layover in Iceland. Economy Comfort (or Business) would be preferred since even from the US East Coast it’s still a bit of a flight

 

Transportation between cities

Then: A mixture of trains, planes, and buses

Now: The same – Europe has a great rail system and many budget airlines

 

London, UK

Then: Hostel near Piccadilly Circus

Now: A hotel in a less touristy area. There are tons of good options from old school to modern and trendy. The Mondrian London looks groovy and their award winning Danelyan cocktail bar has many drinks I’d love to try.

 

Then: Walking tours, seeing a show on the West End

Now: London is a great city to walk around. I’d love to see another show on the West End (maybe something about to hit Broadway) as well as the Globe. The British Museum is supposed to be incredible – and the Tate Modern and National Gallery could be great stops as well.

We stopped at the Globe but weren't able to see a show
We stopped at the Globe but weren’t able to see a show

Bristol, UK

Then: A visit to the adorable town of Bristol, which is where Bristol University is and a friend of Jill’s sister, which is how we ended up there

Now: Check out another part of England – Bath or Brighton, perhaps?

 

Dublin, Ireland

Then: A stay in a hostel with bed bugs (yikes!)

Now: We have friends who live outside of Dublin so we’d stay with them or in a hotel in Dublin and travel to visit them

 

Then: The Guinness Storehouse and lots of drinking

enhance-13Now: The same. We both have fond memories of the Guinness Storehouse. Adam also talks about the most delicious Guinness he’s ever had at a bar near the Storehouse so we would adventure to find it!

 

Tour of Ireland – Blarney Stone, Cliffs of Moher

Then: Shamrocker Adventures tour of Southern Ireland

enhance-18Now: The Ireland tour was GORGEOUS but I’d love to see Scotland, where my cousin lives in Glasgow. Renting a car and doing a tour that includes Edinburgh would be scenic and fun.

 

Paris, France

Then: Hostel in Montmartre

Sacre-Coeur
Sacre-Coeur

Now: Paris is one of my favorite cities. I love the architecture, the atmosphere, the food. I’d love to stay in Montmartre again – a hilly neighborhood once inhabited by artists or a hotel with a view of the Eiffel Tower.

enhance-14

Then: Day trip to Versailles, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Sacre-Coeur

Now: I’d add a tour of the Catacombs to the list as well as many delicious dinners and wine. Perhaps a trip to Champagne, France as well?

 

Brussels, Belgium

Then: Food tour filled with frites, waffles, chocolate and beer

enhance-17Now: Brussels was a bit disappointing to me. Next time I’d go to Bruges, Ghent or even Spa – where spas were invented!

 

Amsterdam, Netherlands

enhance-9Then: Enjoying the coffee shops, as well as learning about the city through walking tours and the Anne Frank Museum.

Now: I’d love to go when the tulips are in bloom (generally March-May), as well as get out of the city a bit. In Amsterdam, I’d love to do a canal boat cruise and learn more about the architecture.

 

Hamburg, Germany

Then: A stay with a relative of Jill’s

Now: Hamburg is a very nice city but I’d love to check out other areas of Germany – perhaps Frankfurt

 

Berlin, Germany

enhance-11Then: Bike tour and lots of learning about the history of Berlin and Germany

Bike tour of Berlin
Bike tour of Berlin

Now: Berlin is an incredible city to me – constantly changing and reinventing itself. I’d love to see how it’s changed and learn more about what the city went through during WWII

 

Prague, Czech Republic

enhance-16Then: Gorgeous architecture, a black light show and a bar crawl

Now: Another stunning city. I’d take in more of the architecture. The Prague Castle is supposed to have gorgeous views of the city.

 

Vienna, Austria

Then: A weird museum and not much else I remember – I didn’t particularly like Vienna

Now: I’d go to Salzburg or to Switzerland

 

Venice, Italy

Then: A quick day while waiting for the next train.

Now: I’d love to spend more time in this canal filled city. It can be quite touristy so I’d try to venture out of those areas.

 

Florence, Italy

Then: A stay outside of the city with gorgeous views. A wine tasting, delicious gelato, shopping and art.

enhance-6Now: I’d probably stay inside the city so I could see more of it. The Hotel Villa Cora is stunning – it looks like the Palace of Versailles. Lots of gelato is a must (Grom is famous for it), as well as pasta and all the other delicious Italian food.

Day trip to Pisa
Day trip to Pisa

Rome, Italy

Then: All the famous sites, a tour of the Vatican and smelly subway rides

Now: This time I’d go inside the Coliseum and I’d do a guided tour to learn more about all the history

 

Croatia

enhance-8Then: One of the most gorgeous places I’ve ever been. At the time, it was starting to become a popular tourist destination mostly with Europeans but also with celebrities.

Now: I would go back for sure or over to Greece which is also quite beautiful

 

 Places I’d Add:

Spain, for sure. I’ve heard amazing things about Barcelona and would love to check out the country, which we missed the last time.

Nice, France and Southern France would be another place to add.

Cinque Terre – I’ve heard is quite touristy now but is supposed to be gorgeous

 

Where would you recommend?

Bruno’s Hotel Must Haves

Bruno’s Hotel Must Haves

Hi, guys! It’s Bruno here! My mommy is super busy filming a movie or something here in LA so I thought I’d write a guest post about what I like in a hotel!

 

The Room

First of all, we need a really big comfy bed for both my mommy and daddy to sleep in. I like to sleep in between them but sometimes I like to sleep at the end so it needs to be able to fit all 3 of us.

  IMG_2606 There should also be LOTS of pillows. I love to sleep on the pillows in the middle of the day because they smell like my parents and sometimes I’ll even bury myself in the big pillow pile! So a least 4 for sure.

IMG_2869I also need a nice big armchair because I’m a small guy. I need to use a chair to get up on the bed all by myself. Plus, an armchair is nice if I want to sleep on that. I like lots of options.

IMG_2508Floor to ceiling windows are great so that I can look outside when I’m home alone. I also love long curtains that I can hide in.

IMG_3253I prefer a shower in the bathroom so that I can go in and drink water leftover from mommy’s shower. I really don’t like bathtubs because that means mommy is going to give me a bath and water is yucky!

I’d also like a fridge because that’s where my parents put my wet food and sometimes tasty things like CHEESE. OH MY GOD CHEESE! And sometimes they have deli meat in there too which is also really tasty.

 

The Hotel

I really hate slippery floors. They make me really nervous that I’m going to fall. So I prefer carpet. I like to run fast on carpet! If it’s a short hotel, I’m happy being close to the stairwell otherwise I need to be close to the elevator. But it can’t stop on any other floors otherwise I’ll try to run out!

There should be a grassy area right outside the door for me to pee on. And lots of doggy smells. I like to smell the other dogs.

I also really like doormen. They’re nice and open the door for me and sometimes they have treats and water bowls.

I really don’t need that much in a hotel but those things make me really happy! So if all hotels could have that, that would be great!

5 Ways to Use Those Hotel Toiletries

5 Ways to Use Those Hotel Toiletries

Donate Them

Collect all your toiletries and donate them to a local shelter. It might not mean a lot to you, but a lot of homeless or battered women would love shampoo or soap to use. Some hotels even use luxury brands like MALIN + GOETZ or Le Labo.

Covenant House, YMCA or YWCA shelters are a good place to start or you can try homelesshelterdirectory.org for more shelters near you.

 

Create a Hotel Bathroom for Your House Guests

Keep the hotel toiletries for the next time you have a house guest. Collect the whole set and put it out on a tray (bonus points for a folded washcloth or towel). Your guests visiting on vacation will love the hotel fee.

 

Reuse the Bottles

If you must use your own shampoo, why buy your TSA-approved 3 oz. containers from the store when you can just empty out the freebies and refill with your own toiletries. Not only will this save you money, but you’ll be able to use your same products while on vacation.

 

Throw the lotion in all your bags

I am constantly re-applying lotion and the hotel lotions are the perfect size to throw in every bag I own so no matter where I am, I have lotion with me.

 

Use Them at the Gym

They’re the perfect size to keep in your gym bag. Some hotels even have individual makeup wipes – another great item to throw in your bag for a post-work workout.

My Stay at the 21C Museum Hotel in Durham

My Stay at the 21C Museum Hotel in Durham

I first came across the 21C Museum Hotels in Louisville, KY. I was visiting a friend of mine there who suggested we check out the art gallery in the hotel. An art gallery? In a hotel?! 

Outside the 21C in Louisvil
Outside the 21C in Louisville

It. Was. Awesome. The exhibit was modern with a mix of all art mediums including video. My favorite was Peter Sarkisian’s Puddle, which included video and audio.

Since then, I’ve always wanted to stay at a 21C Museum Hotel, located in select cities (Louisville, Cincinnati, Bentonville, Durham, Lexington & Oklahoma City). So when the Durham location was one of my company housing options in Durham, I had to stay there.

 

The Hotel

The hotel itself is super groovy. Housed in an old building designed by the same architects as the Empire State Building (more on that later).

The mascot
The mascot

The room is comfortable with soft lighting (and fantastic “entry”, “master” and “bedside” switches). The bathroom is black and white with purple lighting and Malin + Goetz products.

Duckie in the shower
Duckie in the shower

Best of all, the hotel is PET FRIENDLY. Which means Bruno was very welcome. For a one time cleaning fee of $150, your pet can stay no problems.

 

Art Gallery

The exhibits rotate and there were a few pieces that I remember from the gallery in Louisville. Again, there was a mixture of video, sculpture, and paintings. Here are a few of my favorites:

Elastic Empire State by Alexandre Arrechea - transformation of the Empire State Building, designed by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon, the same architects of the building that is currently the 21C Durham
Elastic Empire State by Alexandre Arrechea – transformation of the Empire State Building, designed by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon, the same architects of the building that is currently the 21C Durham
Memorial Flag by Dave Cole - made out of 18,000 plastic toy soldiers
Memorial Flag by Dave Cole – made out of 18,000 plastic toy soldiers
Felipe by Adriana Duque
Felipe by Adriana Duque

I highly recommend this small chain of hotels and can’t wait for my next stay with them!

3 Top Hotel Rewards Programs Explained

3 Top Hotel Rewards Programs Explained

Over the last 2 years, I have stayed at every major hotel chain and am a member of all rewards programs. I’ve counted my nights and points and have worked my way up to the top tier of a few. Here is my rundown and how to get ahead!

 

HHonors (Hilton)

Includes: Waldorf Astoria, Doubletree, Embassy Suites, Hampton Inn, Homewood Suites & Home2 (aside from the obvious Hilton properties)

Where I’m At: Diamond (top level)

 

Run Down: 4 levels – Blue, Silver, Gold & Diamond

 

Blue – Automatic when you sign up

Silver – after 4 stays or 10 nights

Gold – after 20 stays, 40 nights or 75k base points

Diamond – after 30 stays, 60 nights or 120k base points.

 

Since I live in hotels, I reached diamond status by staying 60 nights. If you have a Hilton credit card, you’ll probably gain this status pretty easily too.

 

The biggest perk to going up tiers is really just the bonus points. For example, at the diamond status you get a 50% bonus on all base points you receive. So for 150% for each stay, you’ll quickly rack up the points for your free nights.

photo taken from hotel website
Photo taken from hotel website

How Do You Get Free Nights? We’re going to stay at the Home2 Suites in Orlando which is just 6 miles from Disney World and includes a free shuttle. It’s only 30,000 points a night, and my points will get me 3 free nights.

 

Marriott Rewards

Includes: Renaissance, Residence Inn, Courtyard, Fairfield Inn, Springhill Suites, Autograph Collection (Grand Bohemian Hotels, Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, etc.), TownePlace Suites, Ritz-Carlton

Where I’m At: Silver (bottom of 3 levels)

 

Run Down: 3 levels – Silver, Gold & Platinum

 

Silver – after 10 nights

Gold – after 50 nights

Platinum – after 75 nights

 

The rewards program is so-so. It’s benefits are similar to Hilton but it’s kind of a bummer that the only way to move up is by number of nights. So for example, with Hilton you could stay at a Hilton property for 1 night only 4 different times and get Silver status (so only 4 nights), you HAVE to stay the specific number of nights to move up. So in order to reach platinum, you have to stay at a Marriot property for two and a half months in the whole year to reach Platinum. Unless you live in hotels like me (and I STILL have never reached platinum), this can be pretty tricky.

 

Will the Marriott Rewards credit card help you? I’m not sure. You get 15 credits towards your Elite membership each year which puts you into the Silver category and then you get 1 credit for every $3000 in purchases. In order to get to Gold, you still need 35 nights so it will still take you some time or a stupid amount of money.

 

How Do you Get Free Nights? For a stay in New Orleans, one night is also 30,000 points but I only have enough points for one night out of our stay.

Photo taken from hotel website
Photo taken from hotel website

SPG

Includes: Sheraton, Westin, St. Regis, W Hotels, Aloft, Four Points

Where I’m At: Preferred

 

Run Down: 3 levels – Preferred, Gold, & Platinum

 

Preferred – when you sign up

Gold – 10 stays or 25 nights

Platinum – 25 stays or 50 nights

 

Platinum requires less stays or nights than the other brands which makes it much easier to get ahead PLUS with all the Sheraton hotels as well as the other luxury brands in its collection, you should be OK.

 

How Do You Get Free Nights? With rooms 10,000-20,000 points per night, this program seems to be your best bet.

 

Please note that in November 2015 Marriott announced that it would buy the Starwood hotel chain so the rewards program is expected to combine – but bonus to you, it will be the largest hotel chain so lots of opportunities to move ahead!

4 Favorite Weekend Getaways from NYC

4 Favorite Weekend Getaways from NYC

Newport, RI – if I could live here, I would

The stunning cliff walk
The stunning cliff walk

How to Get There: Drive (3 hours)

Where to Stay: Gilded – a boutique B&B within walking distance to the town. Fun décor and delicious breakfast!

What to Do: Cliff Walk, Newport Mansion tours, relax, walk around the adorable town

The Breakers
The Breakers

Where to Eat: 22 Bowen’s (romantic dinner)

View of the marina from the town
View of the marina from the town

Roxbury, NY – town where I got married!

GORGEOUS views in Roxbury, NY
GORGEOUS views in Roxbury, NY

How to Get There: Drive (3 hours)

Where to Stay: The Roxbury Motel – THE coolest hotel I’ve ever stayed at. Themed rooms and stunning mountain views

Amadeus' Bride - a fitting room for an actual bride
Amadeus’ Bride – a fitting room for an actual bride
The Wizard's Emeralds
The Wizard’s Emeralds

What to Do: Summer – hiking, kayaking, all the outdoor activities. Winter – skiing or staying in

Where to Eat: Peekamoose (for dinner), Phoenicia Diner (for breakfast)

2014-06-23 12.30.35

East Hampton, NY – go in the winter!

IMG_1671How to Get There: Hampton Jitney

Where to Stay: Mill House Inn – possibly the most expensive B&B I’ve ever stayed at (and that’s in the OFF season) but the rooms (& baths) are oh so relaxing, the cookie & snack bar is amazing and the breakfast is INCREDIBLE. Get the lobster frittata!

French Toast at the Mill House Inn
French Toast at the Mill House Inn

What to Do: The Beach, explore East Hampton or neighboring Hampton towns, shopping, relax in the incredible rooms, take a bath in the gigantic bathtubs

Where to Eat: Honestly, one breakfast + the complimentary snacks can last you the whole day (did I mention how amazing the breakfast is?)

 

Atlantic City, NJ – bear with me, totally trashy but so close

IMG_1809How to Get There: Bus from Penn Station (2.5 hours)

Where to Stay: Since the Revel closed (which housed my favorite spa – still to this day), stay at the Borgata. It’s off the boardwalk and has the Las Vegas feel without having to get on a plane.

What to Do: If all of the amenities of the Borgata aren’t enough, it’s an easy cab ride to the boardwalk for some great people watching or you can head to the outlets

Drinks at the Borgota
Drinks at the Borgota

Where to Eat: If you want to venture outside of the resort, check out the Irish Pub (off the Boardwalk) or Scales Grill & Deck Bar for outdoor drinking (bonus points for pet friendly!)

Drinks on the AC Boardwalk
Drinks on the AC Boardwalk

 

Pooch Hotels

Pooch Hotels

“Where do you live?” is a big question we get and the answer is that Bruno and I live in hotels. We’ve been pretty lucky in finding pet friendly hotels and here’s some of our favorites & tips.

 

BringFido

BringFido is not a hotel but an app and website. It’s super easy to find a pet friendly hotel on the site by entering your destination. I’ll also enter the hotel’s name into Google followed by “pet policy” and that’s another easy way to see if a hotel is pet friendly.

 

21C Museum Hotels

These groovy hotels located in select cities always allow dogs up to 50 pounds for a one time fee of $150. We’re currently staying in the 21C Museum hotel in Durham, NC. The hotel is awesome and has an art gallery in the hotel (how cool!)

 

Candlewood Suites

We’ve stayed at a few of these. The rooms tend to be a good size and include kitchens with a full fridge. Outside, there tends to be designated dog walking areas with poop bags available. There always seems to be multiple dogs (and cats!) and they allow multiple pets in one room. The pet fee varies on length of stay since this is a very popular extended stay hotel, with a  maximum of $150.

Pet Relief area at a Candlewood Suites
Pet Relief area at a Candlewood Suites

Delano Las Vegas (part of the Mandalay Bay Casino)

We’re heading to Vegas and at first thought there was no way a casino would let us bring Bruno. We were wrong! In fact, the Delano Las Vegas is super pet friendly. In addition to the adults living it up, Bruno has a Doggie Butler menu to choose from including dog walks and his own room service menu. The concierge tells us he’s allowed anywhere in the casino except for the pool area. We can’t wait!

 

DoubleTree by Hilton

Not all DoubleTree hotels are pet friendly, but according to the Hilton website, there are 120 locations who would be happy to accommodate your pet.

 

We stayed at The Curtis Hotel in Denver, which is part of the DoubleTree family. It’s a cool boutique-y hotel with themed floors (ours was sports AKA Rocky). You can get your pet’s photo in the lobby where there’s also a dog bowl full of water.

Bruno loved sitting in the curtains at The Curtis Hotel
Bruno loved sitting in the curtains at The Curtis Hotel

Graduate Hotels

This cool themed hotel chain is located in college towns in the US. We stayed at their location in Tempe, AZ. Our room was on the first floor with a sliding door out to a fenced in grassy area for pets. It was incredibly convenient being able to open up the door for Bruno to go out while staying inside my room or even sitting on my own patio area with a table and chairs. Poop bags were provided.

 

Home2 Suites

This Hilton chain also has large rooms with full fridges. Two pets max and $125 fee per stay.

 

Hotel Phillips in Kansas City

We loved the Hotel Phillips because the staff was so friendly and welcoming to Bruno. They were sure to give him treats and were always happy to give him a pat. They even offer a bed and food & water bowls during your stay.

 

Kimpton Hotels

Bruno hasn’t stayed in the Kimpton Hotel yet but we definitely will with all their great pet amenities. In addition to a designated Director of Pet Relations, you can borrow a bed, food & water bowls and mat. There are no pet fees and no restrictions! And Kimpton Hotels are really nice. In addition, Kimpton and IHG are in the process of merging so you can rack up those points.

 

LaQuinta Hotels

We haven’t stayed in this chain yet but should because the chain has no pet fees. It’s a shame that a lot of hotels require fees (I’m pretty sure it won’t cost $100 to clean my room which I leave no dirtier than if there were no pets). This chain is very pet friendly with a maximum of 2 pets per room and 50 lb. weight limit.

 

Residence Inn

We love Residence Inns because they tend to be very pet friendly. One bedrooms are great for confining your pet to a certain area in your room and kitchens are another great perk.

 

Sofia Hotel in San Diego

This hotel might only have one location, but it deserves props for making Bruno and I feel very welcome. We received an adorable door hanger letting housekeeping know Bruno was inside, as well as a treat bag. Bruno devoured the treats quickly but luckily there were additional treats in the lobby. We also loved the welcome chalkboard with Bruno’s name, along with the other four-legged guests. The hotel’s restaurant is pet friendly and even had a doggie party while we were there.

IMG_2973

AirBnb

If you’re having trouble finding a pet friendly hotel in your destination, check AirBnb. They have a pet friendly filter and with many homes, you might find a lovely fenced in backyard.

 

Building's dog run
Building’s dog run