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Forget, for a minute, the glowing reviews of Michelle Obama's and Bill Clinton's speeches at the DNC. It turns out another thing reporters' minds were the rotten hotels they were assigned for the event, which took place this past week in Charlotte, NC. But cramped rooms and bad service were the least of it—we're talking drug dealers, prostitutes, and bed bugs.
The bed bugs in particular were an issue, as the Washington Times reported that several of the DNC media-hosting hotels have dealt with bedbug infestation complaints in the past year.
The scene was enough to make radio talk show host David Webb comment:
"It comes down to organizing a good event, and frankly, that says something about how they do things here."
No one likes to talk about Bed Bugs especially not us after we once received several photos of supposed bed bug bites from hotel guests. (We like hotel photos in our inboxes but definitely not this kind.) Yet there's an entire event happening in Vegas in September that will be all about bed bugs.
The third annual North American Bed Bug Summit is taking place from September 6-7 at the Red Rock Casino and Spa off the Strip in Summerlin. At the conference, the "BedBug University" will be in session giving hotel owners and maintenance teams an "educational blueprint" on effectively dealing with and preventing bed bugs. Twenty-three entomologists and bed bug experts will be giving talks while more than 75 vendors will be hawking the latest bed bug-related services and products.
Now, we have to wonder about how well this conference will be attended. If a hotel shows up, does that mean they have bed bugs? An attendee quandary indeed. On the flip side, if you plan on heading to Vegas September 6-7 and want to be sure your stay will be bed bug-free then definitely book a room at the Red Rock. Rates start at $200 a night.
Sleep tight! Don't let the bed bugs bite. Ohh...
Bed bugs are never something we like to think about. Bed bugs at a posh hotel? Even less so. The NYC bed bug invasion crossing to the West Coast? It doesn’t bear thinking about.
So the news that the The Grafton On Sunset in LA might have infected the contestants of the X Factor with bed bugs is making us a little queasy.
According to that ever-reliable (cough) source the Mail Online, “at least four” contestants were bitten while they stayed at the hotel. They saw a doctor, were diagnosed with bedbugs and swiftly switched hotels:
A few of them were covered in bites, itching on their necks and legs. We didn't know what it was at first but we soon worked it out, it was pretty shocking.
Now we've all moved hotels and everyone's clothes have been cleaned.
Well, we can't say we're that surprised. According to data released yesterday, none other but Las Vegas ranked number one as the city with the most hotel bedbug complaints. Guess all those extra hotel rooms proved too enticing for the little blood-suckers.
The report contains a quote from Philip Vaughn, CEO of Raveable.com (the travel website that completed the study), who says this has been "a groundbreaking year for bedbugs." And how. We'd only just finished telling you about The Park Central's Union Rat woes yesterday, and now this happens. Aren't you curious to see which other cities made the cut? More creepy-crawly cities after the jump.
A giant inflatable black rat sits with pride of place on 7th Avenue in Manhattan, just south of Central Park. What's it doing there? Well, first off this rat is hardly a surprise to real New Yorkers, who fondly know it as the "Union Rat" often employed to silently (but very visibly) protest sites of labor tensions. The Union Rat is a very ugly, very menacing beast with beady red eyes and straggly inflated whiskers, but this rat is effectively pimped out; gold money bags in hand and a cigar jauntily clenched between teeth, it draws attention to a big issue in NYC: bed bugs.
Slow your sidewalk stride here to read the sign and be instantly grossed out: "Park Central guests have complained about sleeping with bed bugs." The Park Central is a massive tourist-friendly hotel in the center of Midtown, in front of which this rat sits. Back in the day, the Park Central's big claim to fame was offering a TV in each room at no extra charge; these days, the focus has obviously changed (and we highly doubt anyone would appreciate bed bugs being listed as an amenity).
We've all had that moment of fear when we've checked out of a hotel and felt a little itchy. Uhoh, did we just spend the night with bed bugs? Now imagine if not only you were itching and scratching but your cat was too!
That's what a woman is claiming happened to her and her pet after they both spent a few nights at a Holiday Inn in Glendale, Ariz. The woman, who is only going by the name Elena, says she developed red itchy bumps on her neck after checking out the hotel. A doctor determined she had bed bug bites but her cat ended up in worse condition. ABC15 local news reports:
"I noticed she was starting to pull her hair and itching," Elena said. "I said let's see in a couple of weeks if it gets any better. Within that time, it had gotten much worse. There were bald spots throughout the cat's body and (pus)."
Elena took her cat to Apollo North Animal Hospital in Glendale. Dr. Patricia Bennett treated the cat. Bennett tells me the cat had "damage due to scratching an itch." Bennett said there were "scabs, bumps, and lesions" from "head to toe."
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Bed bugs are a hotel guest's worst nightmare. But there's not much you can do about them since they are so hard to see and it's only when you've returned home from a trip that the telltale red bumps start to invade your skin.
And not even avoiding skanky budget hotels will protect you as luxury hotels have been known to be infested too.
But now there's a product out there that claims it can keep bed bugs from getting into your suitcase EcoSmart Bed Bug Travel Repellent uses botanical ingredients to "erect a barrier around [a] suitcase and other areas so bed bugs, if they're lurking can’t hitch a ride home."
And if you're staying in hotel rooms, you can spray EcoSmart around the headboard of the bed and the mattress area to keep the bed bugs from biting in your sleep. You can even spray EcoSmart in your home if you think the bed bugs may have followed you there.
But we all know, there can never be just one bed bug and there can never be just one bed bug complaint. A family from Michigan (warning: gross pic on this link) is also saying they got bit during their recent Waldorf-Astoria stay.
David and Christine Drabicki of Plymouth, Michigan say they brought bedbugs home with them after their trip to NYC, and were forced to evacuate their home for six weeks while it was treated for an infestation. Their lawyer tells Crain's that the couple "woke up in their hotel room to find bedbug bites all over them." To make up for the blood-sucking parasites, the hotel changed their room and gave them complimentary spa treatments.
Bed Bugs / Manhattan Hotels / Hilton Hotels / Waldorf-Astoria Collection / Hotel Hell / Hotel News / → All Tags
Things might be wonderful in Shanghai but in NYC it's a different story.
Bed bugs were all the rage in New York City this summer infesting, for what seems like the first time, non-hotel buildings such as apartments, offices, Howard Stern's recording studio, the Wall Street Journal, and retail stores. But we at HotelChatter knew it was only a matter of time until the "bed bugs in my hotel room" complaints came rolling through.
Dana De Maria says the bites she suffered the night of Sept. 25 left her with welts and rashes that forced her on anti-inflammatory Prednisone pills for a week, the newspaper reports.
"We were grossed out," said De Maria, 21, an investment-bank employee from Coral Gables who was in town for the weekend with her mother, sister and boyfriend.
De Maria got an upgrade and a free night at the hotel -- but she says that wasn't until hotel workers demanded to see her bites.
That upgrade actually put her in one of the hotel's Tower rooms which go for around $700 a night and are in far better condition than the rest of the hotel. The hotel also comped her first night at the hotel. The guest stayed one more night before checking out.
If you think that paying $400+ per night for a luxury room in a New York City hotel means you don't have to share the pillow with bedbugs, then you're wrong. Not to make you super paranoid, but it's the truth; with a rash of recent bedbug infestations in everything from flagship retail stores to entire office floors, there's no guarantee that the little blood suckers aren't also in your hotel sheets.
Pop singer Lauren Hildebrandt tells USA Today that she recently emerged from a stay at a "luxury hotel in New York City's Union Square neighborhood" with bites on her body and noweven though we've never heard of her until this incidentshe wants to become the voice that speak out for bedbug awareness.
Clean, kinda clean or unclean? That's the new guessing game you could playing the next time you're in Kansas.
We almost seem to take for granted the safety and sanitary inspections that frequently take place in hotels and motels but upon hearing that the state of Kansas has halted its inspection program for licensed hotels, we're a little fearful that this could become an awful but necessary trend as governments struggle to balance their budgets.
KansasCity.com reports that the program was stopped after $300,000 cut from the Department of Agriculture (which randomly oversees hotel inspections.)
The inspection program aimed to ensure the cleanliness and safety of guest rooms in the state’s nearly 1,000 licensed hotels. All currently licensed hotels, motels and bed-and-breakfasts have been inspected.
The Department of Agriculture hopes to resume the program when funding becomes available. Thankfully, restaurants will still undergo inspections. In the meantime, if you're traveling to Kansas we say bring your own blacklight.
Don't worry, everyone: the EPA is all over this bedbugs thing. Apparently, due to a recent rise in bedbug complaints to city information lines (not just hotel bedbugs, but infestations of apartments, hospitals and dorms too), officials have concluded that there has been a recent worldwide resurgence of the bloodfeeders the first one since they were "last seen in great numbers prior to World War II. And the little buggers need to be dealt with.
According to an AP report, the folks at the Environmental Protection Agency have decided to put some heads together to do something about the issue: the EPA is hosting its first-ever bedbug summit, set to take place today and tomorrow. Explaining the current creature comeback:
One of the problems, according to researchers and the pesticide industry, is that there are few chemicals on the market approved for use on mattresses that are effective at reducing bedbug numbers.
The EPA, out of concern for the environment and the effects on public health, has pulled many of the chemicals that were most effective in eradicating the bugs from the U.S. over the last 50 years — such as DDT — off of shelves.