People Eating Breakfast At Fancy Hotels Piss Me Off

Filed Under: Hotels


You’ve been warned… 😉

Generally I’ll choose an a la carte menu over a buffet any day of the week. Because I’m a selective germaphobe, and buffets are nasty (and that doesn’t even account for the fact that they invariably result in overeating… nom nom nom).


But after having breakfast at the Park Hyatt New York the other morning, I think I’ve changed my mind. Fancy hotels shouldn’t be allowed to have a la carte menus. Because people are ridiculous.


Take the guy sitting across from me.

“May I get you something to drink, sir?”
“Yes, an English breakfast tea. But please make it strong. And I’d like it with honey. And sheep’s milk.”

Freaking really?!?

Then it came time to order food.

“I’d like a fruit sah-lahd, please.”
“We only have a fruit plate, would that work?”
“No, I’d like a sah-lahd, please.”
“Okay, we can slice up some fruit and put it in a bowl for you.”
“Yes, and I’d like my sah-lahd with an olive juice base.”

Goodness gracious! I could’ve sat there all morning watching people be ridiculous while banging my head against the table.

  1. You’re really on a roll this week. The hotel that you just said isn’t five star, because of un-spectacular service, is willing to honor ridiculous food requests. Isn’t that a vote in their favor?

    Yes, that guy sounds ridiculous, but we like what we like, and hotels have taught us to expect that level of service.

  2. I don’t know Ben… if I were to pay $1000 for a night I would feel comfortable making very specific requests as well.

  3. What’s up, @Lucky, you’ve been quite irritable lately. Do you want to talk about what’s really bothering you? 🙂

  4. Hah, someone is moody lately.

    But if you can be bothered/be pissed off by other people’s little nonsense like this, it shows a great deal of the kind of person you are.

    Also, the guy politely said it with please. At least he’s not a total jerk. But what do I know, I wasn’t there.

    Also, making fun of his accent?…. sah-ladh. Com’on Ben, be more mature.

  5. Have to admit, Ben … you’ve been complaining a bit much lately. It is making it seem like you’re (ab)using the power of your blog to ruin reputations – when you’re not happy with a product or service.

  6. If he got sheep’s milk and olive juice, I’d say it’s a mark in the column of “yes the Park Hyatt is in fact a 5-star hotel.”

  7. Jason says: “If I were to pay $1000 for a night I would feel comfortable making very specific requests as well.”

    ^ This. Seriously.

    If anything I’m surprised a highly visible location from a top end brand would have trouble meeting these types of requests. It’s not like the customer is requesting coffee from the digestive tract of a civet or eggs from an endangered species. Also, buffets are stale and disgusting and I wouldn’t touch most of the spreads I’ve seen on your blog. Seriously.

  8. This is par for the course in NYC though. If you’ve ever gone up to the deli counter you’ll find the same behavior, and it’s expected that you will get exactly what you want and it will be fantastic.

    Just like that old lady that orders a tuna sandwich on a slightly toasted bagel with a really thin slice of onion. If you can’t do specific in this town, the guy next door can.

    And I’m with the commenter above… If you have someone paying $1k a night for a hotel room, you can’t be surprised by a specific food request.

  9. @YVR604Flyer, as if saying “please” gives you all the privileges to do whatever you want.

    I like these posts. They are fun to read.

  10. I come from the Middle East. I know lots of people who drink sheep’s milk in the morning. If you go to ANY hotel here you won’t find that stuff simply because it’s weird. Even if it’s authentic style, nothing like that should be expected. I think he was just testing how far his money could get him.

  11. @Maora

    Saying please gives one a privilege of likelihood to be treated kindly or at the very least be treated back with kindness. Keyword “likelihood”.

    Anyone can always say please when asking for something. Whether or not your request will be granted, that’s another story. But it doesn’t hurt to say please. That’s what my mother taught me well. I don’t know about you.

  12. Is it just me or are you attracting a lot more troll-like commentors these days? I think people can often be ridiculous with their overtly weird requests. I’d loooove to hear the conversation between the waiter and the kitchen Hahaha

  13. the customer is requesting coffee from the digestive tract of a civet

    That’s in fact prominently featured on the Park Hyatt New York breakfast menu.

  14. Somewhere out there, someone is writing a blog about how they were ordering breakfast at the Park Hyatt New York one morning, and this one American guy in his early 20s wearing glasses seated close to them was sighing, tut-tutting, shaking his head, rolling his eyes, and jotting down notes every time we interacted with the wait staff…he seemed to be doing this also with half of the guests…why, he was almost acting judgmental…

  15. I’ve encountered similar behavior at a certain Hilton family property in Asia…hahaha it is our entertainment! We wait until the offender is gone then we ridicule their “request” with the waiter (who is our friend from many many stays) for the next three days and beyond. Be assured, if you are acting like this, someone is noticing and making fun of you behind your back. Whatever.

    I’ve seen it all, and I’m sure the staff has seen more….octogenarian lady guest emptying the buffet food into her giant purse, a guy who did some drugs and passed out at the table and had to be carried out by mgmt, teenage hookers with old scummy johns, etc. You can’t escape these people, they are in all classes of society.

  16. Seriously. This is what ur blog has become? Disappointed. Are you only exiting from being a points/miles/credit card blogger?

  17. Regarding digestive tract of a civet:

    Google “Kopi Luwak” – it’s actually coffee made from the beans consumed and then eliminated by the palm civet in Asia.

    It’s an exceptionally cruel (and expensive) product.

  18. Come on, lucky……
    The same thing can be said about folks traveling in F and looking down at people in Biz or coach.
    You are meticulous about flying F. other folks love their food the way they do.
    Be fair, buddy…..

  19. That was me placing my order.So this is all very embarrassing
    All I hear from you is jealous jealous jealous because you ate off the buffet.
    Olive juice in your fruit sah lahd gives you greater life expectancy if the server doesn’t shoot me or add arsenic to the juice
    Try it you’ll like it. I’m sure Hyatt Place will accommodate me too

  20. For a guy who travels in first class everywhere and rates them on various arbitrary categories – you are awfully judgmental about other people’s specific tastes.

    Don’t be a hypocrite.

  21. For a guy just blogging on how hard it is to justify the $1000 PH premium, this is pretty rich.

    And also, from a selective germaphobe with all kinds of weird habits too…

  22. some ppl r really stupid, y is kopi luwak a cruel product? You are not making sense, the freaking cats eat this and crap it, then you go pick it. Disgusting yes, how is it cruel?

    Also it is his blog he is free to bitch, you can choose not to read, not every post is here for your expressed reading pleasure.

    And who on earth carries sheep’s milk, notice it is not goat but specifically sheep and wtf is olive juice lol lol I did not know the olive is juicy enough to be producing both oil and significant amount of juice at the same time.

    Now if a place has a we make what you want policy fine, but asking for weird stuff is just being a pain, I pick what I want from a menu if there’s an ingredient I don’t like I will ask them to omit it but that is usually as far as I go. Or at Chinese places I ask for a meat with a diff type of sauce that they have but don’t usually fry it with etc.

    I try not to ge difficult, I try and make reasonable requests, no dragons eggs and milk from a country mouse etc

  23. Don’t lose any sleep over the trolls who are complaining that you’re “whining more lately.” We read this blog for your perspectives on travel. If something irks you, I expect to read about it here. If I didn’t appreciate your perspective, I wouldn’t read this blog. Simple-as.

    As for the trolls… get a life. Find a new travel blog. Better yet, increase your travel game so you, too, can have these experiences.

  24. This is why you don’t eavesdrop. Let people eat breakfast the way they wish it, it’s their money after all.

  25. I think by Lucky putting the little soap box gif on the top of the page, that he knows that he is being overly particular and bitching a little. Hey trolls, take it easy.
    In a former life I spent many years managing a high end restaurant, and requests like this are not uncommon. Our prices and star rating pretty much meant we had to treat every request seriously and comply if we could.

  26. Oh lord, enough of the “anyone who criticizes anything Lucky posts in any single way is a troll” argument.

  27. Sometimes I’m glad I don’t stay at places like this. At the LaQuinta, everyone seems to love the breakfasts. More so if the waffle machine is working that morning.

  28. Love these posts. Funny! I don’t get why people think every blogger they read has to be both judge and jury on the topic matter they post…. not sure why Ben has to be fair about anything. Plus the GIF kind of prepared readers for it! Having said that, I’m totally one of those super picky eaters… especially at places where I can be picky. Never thought to ask for sheep’s milk though 😛

  29. Take a chill pill all
    I thought the post was amusing and entertaining
    Good blogger overall
    At the end of the day we all have an expectation even those who like their tea with sheep’s milk 😉

  30. Goodness, some people don’t have a sense of humor. 😉

    I was amused by the interaction, was intended to be funny, and shared it here. Sorry it caused offense to some.

  31. Ben,

    Who was your waiter? There is a super outgoing and bubbly (and cute) breakfast waiter named Dominick… I think that’s his name. I hadn’t seen him in 6 months and I walked into a hearty, “Welcome back gentlemen!”

  32. Ben,

    I’m no offended by your post but comedic elements are often lost in translation when stripped of aural and visual cues. I have wondered why you don’t upload sarcastic commentary in the form of a video or audio clip rather than writing it out. Seems like using video would be a fun and humorous way to get your point across without losing and/or confusing half the audience in the process. At first it might be a little rough or stilted but in time you’d become a video blogging pro and your audience would be able to sense when you’re being funny or feeling annoyed without having to guess.

  33. Ben, i agree with you about the buffet, germs, etc…. My favorite hotel breakfast is the a la carte breakfast served in the Horizon Club @ the Shangri La hotel in Singapore. Nice view, not a crowded room, efficient service and a nice choice of ala carte menu, and all free. One of my favorite hotels.

  34. Lol. These kinds of posts are fun to read from time to time. They are more relevant to the concept of a blog in which the writer expresses their thoughts and opinions.

  35. What’s your issue? They are ordering what they want, how they want.
    Maybe they are not one of those people like you who hunt for miles everywhere.

  36. Ben, you are my favorite blogger and I love reading all the comments. But I don’t know how a germophobe can travel as much as you do. Hotel rooms are swimming in germs from all over the world. At least the food in the buffet gets changed every day. But how often do you see the maids leaving clean water glasses in the room? They just put little paper covers over the glasses so you’ll think they’re clean. You have seemed a little cranky lately, though, even if you are kidding around. Maybe you need to find someone to share those fancy hotel rooms with.

  37. Hilarious! I’d love to know if the guest with the pretentious breakfast requests would actually recognize the taste of sheep’s milk – as opposed to goat’s milk, say – in his tea, or olive juice in his fruit salad as opposed to something else. Maybe he was setting it up to have a tantrum that he wasn’t served what he asked for. What a clown!

  38. @ Lucky – out of curiosity, did they have sheep milk?

    Overall, the breakfast had some pretty particular request but nothing overly extravagant, I think.

  39. Staying in hotels for 3-4 weeks a time, you hear some pretty funny stuff – lately heard a lady complain to the staff at Hyatt Regency in Hong Kong, that she could not walk directly from her cruise into the hotel, her friend could! …. Oh yea , the friend did stay at a different hotel :). I chuckled and had some more tea – not strong 😉

  40. I found it funny, Lucky.

    For those who said you are judgmental – honestly, who is not?! We all talk and whine about others’ irritable behaviors, we just don’t post it on a blog! Does that make them less judgmental than others? Again if you don’t like what you see here, stop reading it maybe best.

  41. Sorry to say this, but Lucky, just because there’s enough new things to write about doesn’t mean many of us would appreciate articles like this. There’re good dramas and there’re pointless dramas, and you know which category this one belongs.

  42. Everyone—on both sides of the aisle–should just calm down. We come here to this man-child’s blog for pure escapism; not for poignant, world-impacting news.
    Let the child use this blog to passively bully those around him.
    The best part is that as a homosexual who’s likely faced a lot of judgment at the hands of others, he uses this pulpit to turn around and do the same. And if anyone disagrees with his antics, he was “only joking” and you “have no sense of humor.”

    Carry on Ben. Your parents are quite proud of you.

  43. Oh, the pain of being a First World inhabitant. After Mommy spanked you, did you ever go to bed without supper? Oh,sorry, I forgot. Mommies cannot do than anymore.

  44. @Cmon
    I do agree with your opening comments and then it went downhill
    I hardly see Ben bullying anyone. That response is absurd as is dragging someone’s personal sexual preference of choice IMHO
    Poking some good natured fun at others who seem a bit demanding yes
    Yes there may be some truth in the undertones to not liking some individuals
    I think most of us within reason get that some folks are discerning and may be more challenging to please
    On the other hand I see your post of somewhat as a kinda sorta personal attack. Highly uncalled for
    If we look deep enough I am sure we can all find some folks that we don’t particularly like or care for their personal behavior. One doesn’t have to read here if they don’t find it informative or entertaining
    My two cents

  45. Just a quick note regarding the civet poop coffee bean comments:
    those beans are used to make a very delicious craft beer. Just sayin’…
    Ok, you all can now resume your attacks on each other… or not and instead go have a beer. Cheers 🙂

  46. Susan says: “How often do you see the maids leaving clean water glasses in the room?”

    Seriously? You’re a little late to the hypochondriatic glassware freakout party from ten years ago.

  47. I TOTALLY agree with you, Lucky. Sheep’s milk? Are you freaking kidding me? Can people be more pedantic? Please. And the fruit salad? Hah! I love how the waiter solved the problem. Ugh. I’m SO glad I don’t have the money/points/miles to stay at these uber high end properties. Too many entitled people for my taste.

  48. This post takes the prize for most idiotic post yet. And then to say “I was being humorous” to defend yourself? Pathetic.

    Whatever do you do when you’re in an airport lounge that doesn’t serve a la carte food but only offers “nasty buffets”? Throw your hands up in the air and wail that it’s all too much?

  49. I enjoyed reading the post while seeping Scottish white tea, Hawaiian white honey and a twist of Meyer’s lemon.

    I prefer the fruit salad with Amish grown produce, macerated with coconut sugar and topped with a chiffonade of Thai basil. A full service restaurant is charging a premium to have the trained staff to accommodate specific requests. Otherwise, a no substitutions clause should appear in the menu.

    The maxim of:” You can ask for as much as you desire, but the restaurant can only deliver what is on inventory” applies here.

  50. Spoiler Alert regarding Lucky’s upcoming posts:




  51. Good job Lucky! The unwashed masses need to be instructed how to properly act! You are doing God’s work! Love the post!

  52. Al says
    February 20, 2015 at 5:13 am

    “Whatever do you do when you’re in an airport lounge that doesn’t serve a la carte food but only offers “nasty buffets”? Throw your hands up in the air and wail that it’s all too much?”

    Don’t be silly, Al.
    He runs to the safety of a laptop and angrily blogs about the experience.

  53. we now live in a very “all about me” and “personalized” world that has been catered to and coddled for years now, why stop? if they don’t give him his fruit salad, he might take his loyalty and money elsewhere over a fruit bowl so hotels and others continue to accommodate. while I find the “sheep’s milk” a bit too much, a 5 star hotel lends itself to catering to whims – no matter how insane.

    As for the ala carte breakfast, I need to order for a food allergy as I can’t do a buffet.

  54. hi Ben, are you angered by all people who eat breakfasts at fancy hotels or just a certain few? I ask because I do not want my wife and kids to inadvertently upset you if we happen to be staying at the same hotel. In our defense, we usually have room service. Is this allowed?

  55. Great post, love short perspectives whether agree with them or not!! Much better than more of the same re-posting over and over on the story of the day that we see on rest of BA.

  56. Hey Ben,

    I didn’t know whether to laugh or shake my finger at you. 🙂 I enjoy your blogs and found this one to be amusing.

    But, it isn’t only only rich snobs at fancy hotels that act this way. Sit at any Starbucks for at least 15 minutes and you’ll see the same behavior…if not worse. “Young man! I ordered my soy chai latte at 140 degrees and you made it at 142. No tip for you.” 🙂

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