Cheap Ottawa Hotels
by an anonymous financial advisor who knows more than he would like to about them
"Are we ever going to get out of these cheap Ottawa hotels?" I asked Tony, my tour manager.
"Are you ever gonna put out a hit record?" He shot back.
I responded in my head only. He was right. But after 5 years touring Canada with my Guns and Roses cover band, Sweet Child of Thorns, I was sick of cheap hotels.
As much as I loved the vision of life and music that Axel Rose set forth in the late 80s, and no matter how nice the Canadians were, and how much they understood the big hair lifestyle, the cheap Ottawa hotels were getting to me. (We played in other Canadian cities, but our biggest following was in Otttawa- the Quebeckians didn't did it, perhaps because "enfant doux d'esprit" just didn't have the same ring that Sweet Child O' Mine did.)
Cheap Ottawa Hotel Beds:
That's me in the back, and our bassist, Chuck in the front.
We took this picture to reassure our wives. It didn't work.
I mean, for example... here's the kind of thing we dealt with on a regular basis in these friggin' cheap Ottawa hotels.
- No maid service - a cheap Ottawa hotel specialty
- Dirty Walls - a cheap Ottawa hotel signature
- Weird fans named Jeff who hadn's showered for a week- or maybe ever- able to get into room at 3am while you're sleeping because the lock doesn't work
- Neighbors having sex - cheap Ottawa hotel entertainment
- Neighbors gay and having sex
- Neighbors sounding like they're having sex with something else - cheap Ottawa hotel inspiration to get outside and see the town
At first, you think these cheap Ottawa hotels experiences are cool. After all, you signed up for the rock n roll lifestyle. But where are the female groupies, where's the money, where are the high quality drugs? When you're sitting in some cheap Ottawa hotel room after an afternoon lounge bar set staring at the wall because the TV only works by remote and the remote won't let you change the TV from the Home Shopping Network and your manager, Tony (all managers seem to be named Tony- as if part of rock n roll band manager training is a rite of passage in which you adopt your new shaman-spirit-manager name, which is always "Tony") comes in with 40oz beers for everyone... then you know you've arrived at that particular level of rock n roll failure, cheap Ottawa hotels level.
For the uninititated, let me outline the levels of rock star success and failure, which is based entirely on the quality of your hotel stays, and which includes, near the bottom, 'cheap Ottawa hotels level':
- Four Seasons Ottawa hotel presidential suite, roof level, real one of those things with hot water and bubbles, fine cheese, wine, and oyster hors d'oeuvers
- Ritz Carlton Ottawa hotel honeymoon suite, fake one of those things in the bathtub, finest maid and butler service - most cover bands never see this level of success
- Holidome, the nearly cheap Ottawa hotel... featuring the indoor swimming pool where you can swim under the glass and be in the outdoor swimming pool under a bunch of colored balls that keep the heat in even in the winter
- Best Western Victoria Park Suites, truly a cheap Ottawa hotel with a stunning 2 out of 5 stars from AAA. Best feature: an old piano playing guy in the bar who needs help standing up when he quits for the night at 7pm. They do have a fitness center, but us Guns and Roses cover band guys can't use that, or we lose our following. We have to look pasty
- The ultimate paragon of cheap Ottawa hotels, the Howard Johnson City Centre. Don't let the fancy spelling of centre fool you - most patrons describe it as "Terrible!" and "Horrific!" For example, a friend of mine who plays in a Rat cover band wrote me this in an email about the Ottawa HoJo: "This was the absolute worst cheap hotel I've ever stayed in!!!- The rooms were filthy and tiny - The stairwells was barely lit due to flickering & burnt out lights - There were holes in the hallway walls, - The bathroom looked like it hadn't been cleaned since the hotel was opened - The view from our room was of a brick wall! Also, I was told to park on the street in front of the hotel, instead of in their parking lot, and I promptly received a $75 parking ticket!! The hotel agreed to pay the fine, and signed a letter to that effect, but I have just received word that the ticket has not been paid and there have now been late charges added to the total!! DO NOT STAY AT THIS HOTEL...IT IS DEFINITELY NOT WORTH IT!!!!"
Of course, Johnny neglected to mention that unpaid parking tickets get you more girls in our scene, but I think he's doing a reverse psychology thing here. Oh, and I must add, that the Ottawa HoJo management describes their hotel this way:
"19th Century Facade - Near Parliament Hill" We all know that sounding old and antique is a good way for a cheap Ottawa hotel to get away with being run down and filthy, filthy dirty. Even the corporate HoJo site seems to want to disown this cheap Ottawa hotel- when you click on it, it says "Hotel details are unavailable at this time." Maybe because when corporate saw pictures of what was going on there, they burned the photos and shredded the letters.
Anyhow, we'd reached level 4, and I didn't want to go down to the ultimate paragon level 5 of cheap Ottawa hotels, so that's when I broke up the band and went back to Morgan Stanley. I did pretty well... I'm on the board of directors now. I'll let you guess which one I am. Which one of these faces used to live in cheap Ottawa hotels?
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