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Worst Hotel Hells :: Monte Carlo Fire and Waldorf-Astoria Shoot-Out

December 30, 2008 at 3:15 PM | by | ()

Worst Hotel Hells: Monte Carlo Fire and Waldorf-Astoria Shoot-Out

When we went to pick out this year's Worst Hotel Hell, there were, unfortunately, a lot of incidents to choose from. While nobody bit the head off a live duck in a lobby this year, there were some cases of hotel sick, a dude who woke up with white powder on his bed at The Excalibur and a crazy elevator freefall at Paris Las Vegas.

But in the end, we decided to call it a tie between what we thought were the two worst hotel horror stories of the year: the fire at the Monte Carlo Las Vegas and the recent shootout at the Waldorf=Astoria in NYC.

First up, the Vegas fire: back in January, guests were evacuated when a frightening fire broke out on the top of the Monte Carlo. We followed the situation as it unfolded:

A full on three alarm fire is currently blazing atop the Monte Carlo Las Vegas. Those on the scene are reporting dark plumes of smoke and fire crews are already on the roof.

The fire began on the roof around 11 AM local time Friday and has progressed swiftly, engulfing the resorts top four floors.

Yikes. The hotel shut down for a while before unfortunate guests who happened to be in the building at the time could retrieve their belongings from their rooms. Not fun.

More recently, those who had the misfortune of being at the Waldorf=Astoria flagship in NYC experienced a different kind of hotel hell. Guests were ogling the bling in the lobby's small jewelry store (right in the middle of the day around check-in time, in fact) when a robber busted in with a gun. The NY Times' version of the story:

A gunman dressed in black burst into a jewelry store in the ornate lobby of the Waldorf-Astoria hotel on Saturday afternoon, announced that he was robbing the store and began smashing display cases with the butt of his gun, the police said. As the store security guard, a retired police detective, tackled the gunman, shots were fired, striking the guard and sending panicked hotel guests scattering for cover.

Good lord. Here's hoping we have fewer hotel hells to pick from in 2009.

Archived Comments:

Taj Hotel

Getting trapped indoors by terrorists is high on the "hotel hell" checklist, too.

Taj Hotel #2

Taj bombing in Mumbai gets my vote, too.