When someone mentions the word “pod” most people think of a place to throw their junk while they figure out what they want to do with it. Therefore, the idea of experiencing a “pod” hotel conjures up images of sleeping in a dirty cave. I have to admit though, I was intrigued.
On a recent trip to New York city I decided to give the Pod Hotel a chance. Located in Midtown East, in their words, “High style and high tech converge at the Pod Hotel, which offers hip, convenient accommodations for the stylish and spendthrifty traveler.”
Small personal flat screen televisions are built into the wall with retractable arms next to each bed. Wireless Internet runs throughout the hotel, each room contains an iHome alarm clock speaker for your iPod, and modern designs and furniture put out the trendy vibe they are going for. Their “Pod Garden” and “Pod Lounge” provide hip spots to unwind for a few minutes at the end of your day.
All sounds pretty good, huh?
Well, before you race out and try to move to Pod-ville, there are still reasons why the word “Pod” appears in their name and their emphasis on the “spendthrifty traveler”. The rooms are extremely small and many of the rooms don’t include bathrooms. A light system appears in your room to let you know when the four shared bathrooms on your hall are available. They also offer bunk beds for those really looking to save a buck.
Still, for the fleet of foot traveler who is looking to be down near the action in the city but out and about, the Pod Hotel is a nice alternative. It’s clean and just enough space for the person who only needs a small space to rest their head. It is great middle ground for the person not wanting to pay $200 a night, but also not excited about the worn $79 a night conventional spots.
Only one last piece of advice for anyone who may give the Pod a try — if you go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, don’t forget which Pod is yours!
Jason Barger is the author of Step Back from the Baggage Claim: Change the World, Start at the Airport.