I’m still in my basement (see 11 Reasons Why I Still Don’t Want to Travel), and I’m running out of content. That and golf (see TPOL Chokes, Loses) are why I haven’t adhered to my daily blog schedule (TPOL Opens M-F at 10:07AM EST). Fortunately, I have been virtually able to visit a hotel in Hawaii, called the White Lotus. The TV show which airs on HBO Max is “A social satire set at an exclusive Hawaiian resort, the series follows the vacations of various hotel guests over the span of a week as they relax and rejuvenate in paradise. But with each passing day, a darker complexity emerges in these picture-perfect travelers, the hotel’s cheerful employees, and the idyllic locale itself.”
For me, it’s a hilarious depiction of how we act as travelers and how we interact with guests and hotel staff along the way. I can identify with each character and can empathize with the hotel staff that has to deal with needy guests. The most obnoxious but identifiable character is Shane who is at the White Lotus for his honeymoon. He was supposed to receive the Pineapple Suite but was put into a room without a splash pool (see Should I Pay for an Overwater Bungalow?). His wife, Rachel, begs for him to let it go and believes that his obsession with receiving the right upgrade is ruining his vacation. Like me, he is fixated with receiving what he paid for and what he deserves and believes that accepting anything less would be a personal front and that would ruin his vacation. His interaction with Armond, the hotel manager, takes me back to my times complaining when I don’t receive my expected upgrade (see Renaissance Yu Garden Shanghai: A Comprehensive Review). Like Shane, I don’t think I’m a jerk when I request what I deserve. Like Shane, I’m sure the staff may think otherwise. Attempts to appease him with a free bottle of champagne are also not good enough (The W Hollywood: Unwelcome Even on Your Birthday).
As a TPOL reader, you must know how I feel about hotel breakfast (see TPOL Paid for Breakfast! And…). The show does a good job of capturing the drama that is the vacation breakfast.
Mom: Let’s go guys, let’s go to breakfast. Quinn, get your clothes on.
Son: Mom, it’s vacation! It’s a breakfast buffet in Hawaii. It shouldn’t be a stressful situation!
The other relatable breakfast scene is Shane topping his plate with too much food while the hotel staff watches in disgust. Enamored with himself, he comments, “Buffet is decent.”
The show is also funny in that it shows how I imagine hotels are run. Some employees genuinely enjoy providing great customer service. Others have to psych themselves up to cater to the particularities and peculiarities of every guest. Just watching the never-ending requests is exhausting, forcing me to self-reflect on how I behave as a guest. Simultaneously, I laugh at the recommendations by the staff for what activities guests can’t miss while they’re at the resort. From snorkeling to scuba, massages to themed dinners, the show brings the manufactured Maldives experience to life (see The Conrad Maldives: Heaven Can Wait).
Overall, if you can’t be bothered to travel with today’s restrictions but are missing the hijinx of a perfect trip going wrong, visit (watch) the White Lotus.