Well-stocked minibar? Check. Extra-deep pillow-top mattress? Check. Now, if only there were someone in this hotel to just read you a bedtime story.
For every traveler who's ever had those thoughts, there's Hyatt's new Andaz Liverpool Street Hotel in London, which claims to be the first with a reader in residence. Damian Barr, a writer for the city's Times, will recommend books, be available for literary meals and go to rooms for one-on-one reading sessions. Guests can choose from a book menu organized by category, with everything from Guilty Pleasures ("Lucky" by Jackie Collins) to Books You'd Never Actually Read Yourself But Would Like To (Tolstoy, Joyce). "One business guest has booked Damian to read the morning papers, then summarize over breakfast," says Arnaud de Saint-Exupéry, the hotel's general manager. He sees the program—launching to coincide with the London Book Fair this month—as one in a series of cultural offerings from the luxe hotel. Other programs will follow when Barr goes back to his day job in May.
The boutique-style hotel also has a "living room" instead of a lobby and has no front desk—guests are checked in via tablet PCs by staffers who lead them to their rooms. The bills, though, are pretty traditional: one night starts at about $790 for U.S. travelers dealing with current exchange rates. Perhaps they should request a recital of "You Can't Take It With You."