About Hotel Fruit Plates…

Filed Under: Hotels

Y’all are a smart bunch, which is why I like posing questions to you guys when I don’t know the answer. For example, a couple of months you guys helped me figure out why hotels close the drain “stoppers” when servicing rooms.

But here’s another mystery I can’t figure out, and I’m wondering if I’m the only one.

It’s pretty standard to find some sort of fruit plate in your room when checking in at a luxury hotel.

This can be something modest, like two oranges on a plate at the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur.

Mandarin-Oriental-Kuala-Lumpur - 35

Or something more moderate, like a few types of fruit on a plate at the Park Hyatt Dubai.


To something completely ridiculous. Yesterday I checked into my hotel in Beijing, only to find the below fruit plate.


I don’t think you can fully appreciate just how big it is, so for some scale, here’s the fruit plate on top of my Tumi carry-on — it’s about the same size!


Now if I find one or two pieces of fruit in my hotel room I’ll sometimes eat them if hungry, but I can’t even begin to rationalize the mega fruit plates some hotels offer. Fruit can be expensive, and also spoils quickly, so it has always seemed a bit wasteful to me.

Am I the only one? Does anyone actually go to town on hotel fruit plates? Like, has anyone in the history of staying at hotels ever finished the above plate over the course of their stay?

This is by no means intended as a complaint, but rather is intended to help hotels possibly save money, unless I’m in the minority with my perspective?

How do you feel about hotel fruit plates? Vote in the below poll, and let me know your thoughts in the comments!

[poll id=”79″]

  1. I agree that sometimes it can be a bit much. And often it’s exotic fruits that take some work…it’s not all bananas and apples.

  2. A few years ago, I was working in Asia for a month. I was given plates of fruits like that. I would cart them off to work and gave them to the workers who totally appreciated beyond words.

  3. I usually don’t eat much of it, but the big fruit plate at PH Maldives served as my free lunch during my recent stay.

  4. > It’s pretty standard to find some sort of fruit plate in your room when checking in at a hotel.

    Uh… what?

  5. “It’s pretty standard to find some sort of fruit plate in your room when checking in at a hotel.”

    What delusional plain of privilege do you exist on?

  6. I’ve never been sure if it is always complimentary or if I’ll get dinged $20 for an orange.

  7. What I find even more interesting is that the fruit plate usually don’t come with a fruit knife, which makes it inconvenient to cut or peel.

    Imagine getting a mango or some other types of tropical fruit, it could get messy.

    But I do appreciate the fruit plate and tend to actually eat them.

  8. Off topic a bit, but I went through security at Beijing airport on Sunday and it was a zoo! No premium line (I checked, based on Lucky’s info, tried a different lines, and finally had to go to the normal line. Was there for nearly an hour when I was able to get into a short line as my flight was going to be leaving soon. I didn’t get to use the lounge (no big loss) and was one of the last to board the plane.

    I am heading back again this week, would love to hear if Lucky finds a premium line or not.

  9. When I stayed at Sofitel in Morroco, they offered me a junior suite due to Accor Plat, as well as a pile of welcome fruit, which turned to my breakfasts for three days 😀

  10. I appreciate when the hotel provides me with a fruit plate. You never know when you need to stick a few bananas in the tailpipe of the police car that has been following you. The fruit plate at the Beverly Hills hotel is especially good for this.

  11. Fruits that don’t get peeled always worry me. I don’t know where they’ve been…

  12. Fruit looks good, is cheap (relative to flowers) and any leftovers given to employees. Win-Win situation. I’m a vegetarian so I generally eat most of the fruit.

  13. I’ve only gotten a suitcase sized platter once. We managed to nurse it for a couple days and then tossed the rest. I can only eat so much – seemed kind of wasteful.

  14. Plates/bowls/baskets of fruit is a common “gift” in semi-modern Chinese culture. Quantity shows abundance and generosity.

  15. The fruit plate I got at park Hyatt Zurich in suite is literally 100+ fruits and probably 7-8 times bigger than what you showed, may be 4 feet diameter on the table, every imaginable fruit including a pineapple that I can no way cut with small knife.

  16. When I’m traveling, I tend to forget to eat fruit but if its already sitting there, I remind myself to eat it. Whether I eat some of it or all of it depends on what it is.

    That Beijing spread is pretty decent and exotic. Not all countries have longan or dragon fruit (pitaya) on sale.

  17. The grapes always have seeds!! Be careful posting about fruit plates ! Love fruit plates .. Don’t want to see everyone request them and have the benefit taken away! Jk!!!! I get these often in Asia and always appreciate fruit after a long journey

  18. @Lucky – Don’t encourage them to cut back! My wife will hunt you down, man. She’s a fruit MASS MURDERER.

  19. Steve is right on “Plates/bowls/baskets of fruit is a common “gift” in Asia’s culture. Quantity shows abundance and generosity.”

    We received similar fruit plates all over the Asia’s countries. But not like these quantities. This Beijing Hotel treats you very well:)

  20. Lucky: “Fruit can be expensive” – actually, it’s a lot cheaper in many parts of the world than it is here or in Europe. Any sort of tropical fruit tends to be cheaper in the tropics, and local fruit tends to be cheaper in the less-developed world. I know this because I’m a fruit aficionado and I always try out what’s available locally, no matter where I travel!

    I suspect that hotels provide fruit plates because they are NOT all that expensive, yet are very much appreciated by travelers. I certainly appreciate them (although the quality is typically not as good as you can get in the local market, because the hotel gets its fruit from some distributor whose goal is to make sure the fruit survives shipping – so it’s often still under-ripe by the time it gets to the hotel, where it’s served either in the fruit plate or for breakfast). As for why the fruit plates can be so huge in luxury hotels – well, it just gives the impression of more over-the-top luxury, right?

  21. I think a better question you should be asking is: “what do hotels with with leftover fruits from your fruit plate?”

    I imagine most would simply give them a rinse(if they are feeling generous), and put it right back in the plate

  22. I love huge fruit plates.

    In Beijing, I wouldn’t eat fruit that I didn’t peel myself (if you can’t drink the water, the cut friut is dicey). If only there for one night, that’s too much, but if there for four nights, my wife and I can finish that off easy. And have many times. The Park Hyatt Maldives had a big plate, we ate that pretty quick (and there, the water is fine).

    I prefer a medium plate that is replenished daily, but yes, the fruit plate means more to me than the cheap bottle of wine. I could do without the dragonfruit though.

  23. I’ve only receive fruit plates in hotels outside the US. Unfortunately I try to be careful about what I’m eating in foreign countries so I avoid fruits and uncooked vegetables. Even if I get a fruit with a skin that I can eat, it’s annoying in a hotel to have to cut and peel an apple up. So these usually go to waste for me.

  24. I’ve noticed in Southeastern Asia countries (e.g., Vietnam, Indonesia) that they sometimes put plastic wrap over the fruit, which is a smart idea but also makes you wonder if your fruit plate is a leftover from someone else’s. It also highlights something I’ve learned traveling in those countries that there are a lot of ants about.

  25. I received something similar to this in size at the Park Hyatt Vienna. The fruit must have weighed at least 15 pounds, LOL.

  26. It’s silly up until it isn’t.

    I was staying at a certain Carlson property in Dublin and had a rather early flight out. The flight was so early that we could not have eaten a normal breakfast at the hotel, either in the restaurant or the room. But we had a mountain of fruit from our check-in gift, and we devoured it appreciatively as we got ready to hit the road!

  27. I’ve heard that in mainland Chinese culture, when a host provides food of any sort, it is “correct” to provide so much that the guest can’t finish it. For instance, if a dinner guest finishes all the food on the table, the host was remiss in providing insufficient food. Maybe that’s what’s happening here! In any case, the photos made me lol.

  28. My favorite fruit plate presentation was at the Peninsula BKK a few years back. Each day they replenished the plate with some new exotic fruit I usually never see in the states along with the necessary utensils. They had a book that described the various fruit and how to properly peal/eat them.

  29. It’s unbelievably useful for those of us that keep Kosher. Since room service is out of the question it’s very appreciated to always have something in the room to eat.
    Keep the fruit coming!!

    Also, you’re seeing it as a bit wasteful. Look at it this way:
    The hotel wants to add a nice touch to you’re room. They can place a $15 bouquet of flowers, it adds to the room by display. Or, they can put out a $5 fruit platter. Besides adding visual beauty to the room, fruit is actual (more) useful. Not to mention that guest’s allergies may be an issue with a bouquet.

  30. I live in Holton hotels all year around for about ten years now. I got Fruit plates TWICE!!!! Ones in Kansas City because I complained that I found old French fries on my carpet and next day management sent up fruits with an apologizing letter. Another time in Seattle there was a new years party that ordered fruits champagne. They never touched either ones and housekeeping thought they just leave it for me so I found it in my room when checked in. That is it. TWICE in ten years with approx 350-400 3-5 days stays.

  31. I found a half eaten apple between the night stand and bed at a Motel 8 once, I put it aside for later but then forgot about it.

  32. As a meeting planner there’s usually a fruit amenity from the hotel and I enjoy them very much because with 16 hour workdays they make a good snack and may be my only chance for good, fresh food. I also happen to love fruit and eat a lot at home. If I have time when I arrive I actually go to the market or a local store to buy some (wouldn’t have to with the one you received) and laughingly have come back to my room to a fruit plate delivered while I was out. When I’m in Barcelona I stay two blocks from the Boqueria purposely because I buy fresh fruit there every couple days. I’d be in heaven with your fruit plate.

  33. Keep in mind, fresh fruits in Asia are much, MUCH cheaper than here in the U.S. In India, you can buy a kilo of mangoes for less than a dollar. That ginormous platter probably didn’t cost more than a few bucks. And a helpful tip – if you have more than you want to eat, and you’ve hired a car for the day, drivers really appreciate it if you offer up some.

    To answer your question, no, I’ve never seen one that big, but I do appreciate it when I get one. They come in handy while touring, as you don’t always know how long you’ll have to wait for a lunch stop.

  34. i prefer the plates of nuts, cookies, and chocolates if there is going to be welcome food in the room, especially if I can just go to the club lounge and get fruit easily.

  35. I stay at a luxury hotel in Beijing probably a total of 2 to 3 months a year. There is always a lovely fruit plate in my room. It often includes my favorite fruits especially the ones that I’ve even from previous fruit plates. I asked the Housekeeper about the fruit plate and the fact that the fruit always seem fresh. She told me that they replace fruits on a frequent basis and reuse the replaced fruit for other purposes. I am not sure if I would like to be the recipient of The secondhand fruit but I hope it does go to something not wasteful.

  36. I usually avoid them. I really don’t understand why they include grapes and anything else that doesn’t have a peel — seems unsanitary and the grapes especially usually seem to have lots of visible residue, I assume from pesticides. And something just feels a little off trying to wash food off in the bathroom sink.

    Bananas, oranges, etc. tend to be messy and I find that the fruit in the room is often not of the quality I would select for myself at the grocery store.

    I wish hotels focused more on things like nuts, crackers, chocolates instead of fruit.

  37. No, fruit plates aren’t normal unless you’re in 4-5 star hotels and/or have top tier elite status. The average Joe paying for a mid-tier hotel room has probably never had one in his/her room.

  38. Fruit plates are quite common around Asia and the fsmily loves them. Typically not too many pieces and so they are gone in no time.

    On recent stays at a number of IHG properties around Asia have noticed that there is now a card in the room that says because much fruit is wasted / not eaten a fruit plate has not been provided. If you would like a plate please contact room service and they will happily provide one, otherwise a fruit donation will be made to local people in need. Given that we can afford to buy fruit we are happy not to make the call and (call me skeptical) just hope that this is recorded and the fruit donation is made.

  39. +1 on the “all the grapes have seeds!” and, why no knife? I had an awesome fruit bowl in my suite in Bali, but had to go to the club to get a knife. But, quite surprisingly, the bowl was refilled daily and if they noticed you liked something, they left more of that (I like a banana each a.m.).
    Better cruise lines also leave fruit, with a form you fill out for what you want replaced.

  40. Ben
    We stayed at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House London, which is supposed to be a 5* hotel. We are Premier Platinum. The hotel offered us during our long stay virtually rotten bunch of grapes, wrinkled apples and oranges. We complaint but whenever the f&b decide to put fruit, they are rotten.
    On my wife birthday, after they missed it. How could you ignore a guest birthday? Then they sent us a warm cheesecake and left on the table for hours without a fridge. Just terrible low class operation and service less hotel.

  41. I’ve been getting them lately in Marriott’s along with a cheese plate – not sure if it is because I’m on the board of the organization hosting the conference or if it is Marriott Platinum status. Either way, I’m excited for the snack!

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