Globetrotting jetsetter, luxury travel blogger and founder of The Style Junkies, Myrthe Strijbos from Amsterdam roams the world for the most stylish places to stay, spa and eat. Think of dream resorts, boutique hotels, exclusive safari lodges, wellness retreats, hip restaurants and cool beach clubs and you’ve got what this lady is all about.
What’s your must have hotel amenity?
A hydrating body lotion. Especially when I only carry hand luggage and can’t bring lots of liquids.
What’s the most creative or quirky hotel amenity you’ve come across?
The ultra-cool bowling alley at the Ham Yard Hotel in London. Really something special!
What hotel could you happily return to again and again?
For you, what makes a great hotel?
Apart from being stylish, a hotel must be personal, authentic and unique. I want to feel the love, passion and pureness. And, of course, excellent service and attention to detail are a must.
What is your welcome amenity of choice?
Most of the time I’m very thirsty after a flight, so definitely a welcoming drink and a cold towel when travelling to warmer places.
Do you interact with hotels on social media before arrival?
Not before my arrival. I always share pictures during and after my stay.
What are your basic expectations for every hotel?
Definitely a super comfortable bed, a quiet and clean room plus friendly and efficient service.
Which hotel has the wow factor for you?
That’s a tough one. There are simply too many to mention, but Aenaon Villas in Santorini ranks very high for its warm and personal service and its romantic setting. The view will blow you away! I will also never forget Chongwe River Camp in Zambia for the ultimate safari experience in deep Africa!
Hotel wifi – do you ever pay for it?
No never! It’s ridiculous to pay for wifi.
What is your hotel pet peeve?
When the climate control isn’t working properly.
What’s an absolute hotel no no?
Huge hotels that care more about hosting big events like weddings, conferences and parties than offering the ultimate guest experience.
Do you use hotel minibars or avoid them like the plague?
Only when I really need something. Most of the time it’s extremely expensive. I love hotels where the minibars are inclusive.
Luxury to one person may not be luxury to another. How do you define it in relation to hotels?
I think it’s just about a difference in experience. On a luxury trip you can do and experience things that aren’t possible for backpackers, like going on a private safari in a private game reserve where you’re totally alone and don’t see 20 buses full of tourists watching the same animal. It all depends on your own preferences. I’m a big fan of barefoot luxury hotels where I feel one with nature away from the crowds.
Do you generally stay in budget, design, standard or luxury hotels?
I’m blessed that I have the opportunity to stay at boutique, design and luxury hotels. I try to mix it a little bit. I also love to stay at lodges and camps.
Do you prefer boutique or chain properties?
I’m a big fan of small boutique hotels with lots of charm and personality.
Do you ask for an upgrade upon arrival?
Normally as a travel blogger I don’t have to ask for an upgrade.
If/when something goes wrong during your stay do you complain or grin and bear it?
Yes, I complain when something goes wrong. Ok, I have to admit I can be very critical especially when I pay a lot of money. But, I hardly stay at hotels where they don’t offer good solutions. Only sometimes hotels just don’t understand how to solve a problem. For example, when I was staying at Can Guillem in Ibiza there was a big wedding going on. During the day I couldn’t use the pool and at night I couldn’t sleep until early in the morning. Can Guillem didn’t even inform us before our stay or during our stay. That’s something I don’t accept. I think both positive and negative feedback is very important and useful for a hotel.
Which hotel is on your wish list?
Well, I have stayed already at so many different hotels around the globe, but my bucket list is still very long. I would love to stay at the new mountain resort Alila Jabal Akhdar in Oman. It looks so magical!