Thursday, July 16, 2009

deal or no deal

Sometimes choosing a hotel is like "Deal or no deal." You can take the hotel that you have come across while you are driving along, or, and this is where Howie Mandel jumps in with the spiel on whether you have got guts, you drive on, hoping that the next town and hotel are just as good, if not better.

I started out in Ludlow where I spent a great night at the Charlton Hotel. This hotel had it all, great food, great view, and a modern bed and shower in an historic building. With that as a benchmark, I drove north through Wales, stopping in several perfectly lovely towns, but always wanting more. By noon, I was so close to the northern coast, I decided to go for it. Pull out the map and there is Rhyl. It looks like a big enough town . I get there and it is a crowded mess of shoppers, cars, and trucks. Now, the banker is smiling and thinks I should have taken the deal he offered earlier. I drive on, and it is not getting any better. It looks like I am going home with a $1 suitcase.

Then, there is Llandudno, a town on the map with the three squiggles that signify a pretty view of the North Atlantic. I am there, I am tired, it is raining, and my options for bigger payoffs are getting smaller and smaller.

The hotel is the Oak Alyn - not beautiful, but clean and close to the seaside. And, at 30 pounds a night with a full English breakfast, it is the bargain of the trip. Pay in cash because at this price the hotel owner has to keep it simple.It is a deal.

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