Because of our accumulated points from using our Starwood American Express cards, the room -- which normally costs over $200 -- was a freebie. So far, so good.
I took my iPad with me for blogging and Facebook. Unfortunately the hotel charges $9.95 a day to provide Internet access in my room, and I thought that was a bad deal, since so many hotels have free Internet service.
I was briefly thrilled to see that the Internet fee for the PC in the "business center" was just 49 cents per minute (I could have done what I had to do in about three minutes). And then I found that the minimum charge was five bucks.
Altho I am not Mitt or Newt, I can certainly afford $5 or $9.95 (especially with a free room); but I resented having to pay for what other hotels provide for free, and what is likely a high-profit item for the hotel. I decided to follow Wikipedia's example with a one-day blackout.
I was able to use my smart phone for a one-line blog entry ("Not today"), but the tiny screen would have made my normal work/play miserable.
It's a basic service, as necessary as running water -- and much more important than the minibar, in-room coffee maker, in-room safe, 2-line cordless phone, bathrobe, pile of five pillows, free mouthwash, 250-thread-count sheets and a free copy of USA Today.
I'm not cheap or ungrateful. I tipped the bellhop and the maid. I'm thrilled that Starwood properties have an enlightened pet policy. I just hope that this blog post will encourage management to realize that, in 2012, Internet access should not be an extra-cost option.