This MSNBC article by Anya Yurchyshyn, a Budget Travel writer, describes how Motel 6 is changing its room designs to make the rooms cooler and more functional.
The upgrades may also make rooms less bed bug-friendly than traditional-style US hotel rooms.
Of particular relevance to our topic of interest: upgrades to beds and flooring.
The Motel 6 beds are moving to simple, clean platforms and ditching the box springs and bed skirts:
3. Bed Platform
Beds give the room a sense of openness because guests can see beneath them; the sight line isn’t interrupted by a bed frame and skirt. There’s also more room to store luggage.
I hope you don’t mean we should store luggage under the bed! That’s a big no-no, where bed bugs are concerned.
Anyway, the beds look like they have a clean, washable covering, as opposed to the bedspread idea traditional in US hotels.
And floors are going naked:
The carpeting is being replaced by floors made of composite wood and plastic laminate. “A lot of people feel that carpets aren’t very clean,” says Priestman.
(That’s Paul Priestman of Brit design firm Priestman and Goode.)
Yes, you can still get bed bugs in a room that has simple furniture and no carpeting. (And it does not matter how cheap or expensive the hotel is.)
But with fewer frills and fewer layers, it’s easier to locate bed bugs when you inspect the room, and if they’re found, it’s easier for a pest control professional to get rid of them.
Rooms like this make it easier for staff to inspect rooms for bed bugs (as I really hope they are doing), and easier for them to spot bed bugs. It’s therefore easier to respond to bed bug problems if and when they arise.
Since I (cough) “became aware of” bed bugs, I admit to choosing my hotels from tripadvisor.com based not only on reviews (or rather, the lack of reviews mentioning bed bugs), but also in part on the design apparent in room photos.
I prefer hotel rooms that have the kind of bed coverings which need to be washed regularly (like uncovered white comforters), and beds without a lot of frilly action in the bedskirt and bedspread department.
And I’d rather inspect a room where I can really see under the bed, look at the edges of the floor, etc. All in all, I am happy to see any motel chain moving in this design direction.