A Dog's Life: Hilton's Pet-Friendly Program Caters to Pooches
Ollie and I visited two Hiltons on our trip. The first, in Palm Springs, had been accepting pets long before the pet program launched. The second, in Huntington Beach, Calif., was just finding its feet but welcomed us in style, providing a welcome pack of dog treats, a washable, germ-resistant dog bed, silver dog bowl and travel tote with waste bags, organic treats and travel-sized disinfectant & deodorizer (some items are for use at the hotel only and/or available for purchase. Check with individual hotels upon arrival).
PALM SPRINGS HILTON:
PROS: Dog-friendly rooms are on the first floor with easy access to a nice patch of grass, plentiful doggie bags to clean up the mess, and a place to sniff around. The staff was relaxed about the dogs, letting you wander the grounds with Rover on his leash. At $25 per night extra for your pup, it's still cheaper than many kennels.
CONS: The dog-friendly rooms, understandably, smell a bit like, well, dog. But we understood, considering after many months, if not years, of catering to canines it's bound to have an effect. After all, if your dog got sick one night -- or had any kind of, ahem, accident -- you wouldn't want to be charged for a whole new carpet.
HUNTINGTON BEACH HILTON:
PROS: Newly accepting a whole range of pets, the rooms are fresh-smelling, the hotel is gorgeous, and it's right across from the beach – and about a mile from Dog Beach, one of Southern California's only off-leash dog beaches.
CONS: Some teething issues, with difficulty finding an accessible patch of grass with doggie bags and waste bin (we did find some grass at the back of the property in the end.). And the pet charge is steep, at $75 per night it's enough to make you think twice about bringing Fluffy along.
Have you stayed at a great hotel with your dog? Send us your recommendations to firstname.lastname@example.org! We'd love to hear from you.