We are at the Statler Hotel at Cornell University, reputed to be the finest accomodations in the Finger Lakes Region. As part of the famed Ivy League hospitality management program, one would expect the rooms to be state of the art, with cutting edge design, Italian lighting and natural fabrics. Instead the bedspreads are quilted polyester with a '90's floral pattern and the lamps are straight out of the Levitz warehouse sale.
Yes, I have uncovered the reason why the carpets, light fixtures and bedskirts of America's inns are so hideous: This renowned teaching establishment has been setting a standard of mediocrity for the entire industry since it was founded in the late 1800's (not certain that's when it was founded, but that's when everything we hear about on these tours seems to have originated).
Spent the evening with our cousin who is a "hotelie", a freshman Restaurant Management major at the Hotel School. He agreed that the bedspreads are tacky, but said the beds are heavenly and the food everywhere at Cornell is exceptional - the best on any campus. And nothing can beat the view of the Arts Quad, with its classic stone buildings and towers and a glimpse of the gorgeous gorges in the distances. If you can stand the seven-to-eight month winters, Cornell could be the place. As a student here, you can grow up to truly make a difference in the world - in agriculture, human ecology (?), labor relations or veterinarian studies....and I hope that at least some of tomorrow's leaders here will think about dedicating their lives to improving the aesthetics of hotel bedspreads.