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Top rated hotels looking to be downgraded?

Earlier this year I met an accommodation provider whose property had a four-star grading, and probably a good four star at that. When I quizzed him as to whether he would be pursuing a fifth star, he was a little hesitant. He said that he probably wouldn’t, arguing that it would make his business less profitable.   His argument was that guests staying in 5-star accommodation understandably expected the very best.   Modest wear and tear on furnishings wouldn’t be acceptable and so he would have to continually invest and replace and improve anything that wasn’t completely up to scratch. More recently I read about how some top-rated hotels in France and Germany were looking to shed a star from their ratings in order to improve business.   Hotels in Berlin belive they are losing business from the pharmaceutical industry if they carry the top ratings, whilst 3-star  hotels in France have been known to decline an additional star because it takes them into a new tax bracket.   Interesting stuff. Are you aware of other instances where hotels don’t strive for the highest grading possible?

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Daily Telegraph.

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  1. As a banquet manager, every property must deal with general wear and tear so much that it is hard to just keep up let alone improve enough to attain a 5 star rating. Plus, the service skill training must be ongoing to reach clients’ expectations. Very hard to do.

  2. 5 star luxury is indeed lots of pressure, expectation. Sometimes, better be an excellent 3 or 4 star rather than a 5 star that tries hard to keep up with imaginary high expectations

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