I Just Got Offered A Massage In A Hotel Elevator — WTF?!

Filed Under: Hotels, Travel

Holy crap.

I’m sharing this story because this type of stuff never happens to me, and I’m still trying to process what happened. I’m staying at the Westin Cape Town at the moment, and this morning had breakfast in the club lounge at 6:30AM sharp, right as it opened.

Westin Cape Town Executive Lounge

I got in the elevator to the club floor (which is also where the spa and fitness center are located) at 6:28AM, and there was a guy barefoot and in his bathrobe in the elevator, except he didn’t have any button pushed. So I pushed the button for the 19th floor, and he got out there as well. He sort of glanced at me strangely in the elevator, but I didn’t make much of the situation at the time.

Clearly the spa wasn’t open at 6:30AM, and I doubt he was going to the gym barefoot and in a bathrobe. So I assumed one of three things:

  • He was one of those people who shows up in a club lounge in a bathrobe
  • He was confused about the hours of the spa, and figured he could get a massage at that hour (I’ve been to some hotels in the Middle East/India with 24 hour spas)
  • He thought the pool was on the 19th floor, and wanted to go for a swim (the pool is on the second floor, and it’s closed for renovation)

Heavenly Spa at Westin Cape Town

This is where the story gets weird.

I had breakfast in the club lounge, and about 20 minutes later headed back to the elevator, where the same guy was standing. I figured he was waiting on the elevator as well, and that the timing was coincidental. Except there was no button pushed, so I pushed it. When the elevator arrived he said “what floor?”

I told him the floor number I’m staying on, and he pushed only it (which I found puzzling, since I didn’t think he was staying on the same floor). His English wasn’t very good, and he said something including the words “no massage.”

I figured he was saying that the spa wasn’t yet open so he couldn’t get a massage, and I said “yeah, I think the spa only opens later.”

When we got to my floor I motioned for him to exit first, since I assumed that was where he was getting off as well. He motioned for me to go first, and I said “thanks, have a good day.” I figured that meant he was continuing on the elevator to another floor.

He poked his head out the elevator and said “you want massage?”


“No, no thank you, I’m fine.”

And then it dawned on me how strange the whole interaction was. Was he just waiting at the elevator bank on the club floor for 20 minutes, or what was he doing on the floor in his bathrobe?

I’m so confused…

  1. There certainly is a pool inside the spa area (also possibly not yet accessible when spa is closed). I sat near it while I waited for my massage there last month.

    You also need a key to get past the elevator Lobby on any floor-very strange. I probably would’ve reported as well.

  2. I’d challenge the notion that this “never happens to [you]”. Remember the whole sweater thing?

  3. …..Did he know you went to club lounge/that there was a club lounge on the same floor?

    Maybe, in his broken English, he wasn’t actually asking you if you wanted a massage from him, but that you wanted a massage from the spa too and came back without one as it was closed….?

  4. @ Adam — You have to walk past the club lounge to get to the spa/gym, as it’s a pretty narrow hallway. I assume so…

  5. That is bizarre. Was he South African local or do you think he was a hotel guest? Was he using the hotel bath robe or his own? I’d call hotel security for sure.
    Were you using social apps where he may have found you? I read an article a few days ago where it’s relatively easy to find the location of people using grindr and jack’d so be careful out there!

  6. He was just drunk and thought he could go to the spa that early to sweat the alcohol out.

  7. @ Joey — He didn’t appear to me like a local, so I do believe he was staying at the hotel, given that he was wearing a Westin bathrobe. I couldn’t pin down his accent exactly, but I’d guess he was from somewhere in the Middle East/India. And hah, not using any social media other than Twitter/Instagram…

  8. @Lucky Almost as weird as one guy who followed me once to my front door, knocked and asked if I wanted some oral sex.

    He was obviously hitting on you!

  9. I wonder how the story would have ended if he would have also offered 5000 miles with the massage?

  10. Well, some people do weird stuff while on vacation, something in the air that makes them do things they wouldn’t in their hometown. Like advance on someone they feel attracted to or get drunk and talk to random strangers.
    One possibility is he was REALLY lost and in his poor english was just asking for directions to the spa. (but who takes a massage at 6:30am??)
    The other was is he was a perv and wanted something with you.
    Anyway, a funny story to tell after it has passed, but no so funny while it’s happening!!

  11. I would have thought twice about getting in the elevator with him the first time, and no way would I have gotten in with him the second time. 😉

  12. @Robert Hanson – strong agree. I don’t think Lucky did anything wrong in what was obviously a weird situation, but as an only occasional traveler I’d immediately think creeper/criminal/homeless the second he waited for my keycard to scan before pushing a button.

  13. Lucky, hotel security 101: if there is no button pushed when you walk into an occupied elevator, then get out or go down to reception floor and take another elevator.

    Most elevators and lobbies have video, so I agree you should have reported to hotel security as they could ID this guy.

  14. Considering how much you travel , you have led a charmed life if this is the strangest experience that you’ve had .
    Long time ago I learned just keep walking as a remedy for any unwanted offers , questions , insults or whatever . If I even reply it is over my shoulder as I’m moving away .
    Not sure how I would’ve handled the elevator situation though . Maybe “I just forgot something” and turned around .

  15. @ Julian, silly but funny

    On the circumstance itself, this was a very sad and clumsy attempt at gay cruising. Not unusual in the middle east.

  16. I prefer it when you stick to trip reports. The gay lifestyle element of the blog would be fine elsewhere but combining it with trip reports is making the blog less attractive for me.

  17. Wow Lucky, you’re brave to get on the elevator a second time with the freak. The first ride would have been enough for me, if I saw him in the elevator the second time I wouldn’t have gotten in… and I would have called security. That’s super creepy, stalker serial killer creepy!

  18. Is this article just a thin excuse for Lucky to try and sell us that he still has sex appeal? 😉

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