A Bad Day With A Camera

Back North Again

We had a special occasion to celebrate, so we hit the road Wednesday evening as soon as I was done work. It is a nearly four hour drive from Strathmore, Alberta, to Edmonton, Alberta. We were heading to Edmonton for our daughter’s convocation the following morning, so we had booked a room for the night at the Royal Hotel, West Edmonton. The sign on the door informed us it was part of Wyndam’s “Trademark Collection” as if that was supposed to impress us.

The hotel seems a bit swanky when you’re in the lobby. Lots of colour and newer architectural elements. There is also a butt ugly metal statue that I am sure cost a fortune.

Walking down the hallway to our room quickly cancelled out any higher-class impressions made by the entrance of the hotel. The hallway itself had a real cell-block feel to it.

Most of the hotel had the typical hotel/motel vibe to it. I will say that modern vending machines are a lot more upscale than they were when I was a kid. Nowdays they take debit cards, credit cards, coins, and some even read and accept paper currency. They have nice LED lighting, integrated displays, etc. Very posh.

Wyndham did put a bit of effort into the bar in the lobby, but that was of no use to me as a teetotaler. The lighting was nice so I took a few pictures of it. There was also an effort to have some of the interior design elements echo the exterior design of the hotel, which figured prominently with jutting angles. The fact is that the exterior of the building was butt ugly and I couldn’t be bothered to photograph it.

The bed in our room was tired and not the most comfortable. The TV was small and dated and I couldn’t get any of my devices to connect to the free Wi-fi. There were a couch and chair that were a bit lumpy and felt awkward to sit on. I forgot to bring my shampoo so I figured I would use what the hotel stocked in the washroom. They didn’t. I washed my hair with one of the three small bottles of body wash provided.

The Royal wasn’t expensive as hotels went and I will give them credit for throwing in a really nice buffet breakfast, however I still prefer Airbnbs. I have stayed in some very nice ones in Edmonton for less than we paid for our room. This hotel experience was just … meh. Okay-ish. We hurriedly checked out at 7:00 am to pick up the kid for her convocation.

I’ll be surprised if I remember this place much a year from now.

All images created using a Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra.

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© 2024 Sean D. McCormick

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