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Let there be light

Did you know there’s a problem with hotel lighting?

I didn’t. I’ve never really thought about it to be honest. If there’s a light switch, I’m happy. Sometimes there can be too many light switches I suppose. And sometimes the hotel wants you to select a lighting mood rather than whether you want the lights to be on or off.

That can be a little annoying as often the mood options are not moods I’ve ever had. I am sometimes happy, sometimes sad, sometimes excitable or even childish. But those moods are not offered. Instead one must choose between options such as ‘cosmic’, ‘radiate; and ‘uplift’. Bleaugh.

But on the whole during my travels I’ve been perfectly content and certainly never thought to complain.

Others are not content and more than happy to complain it seems. I saw some research this week that said the majority of 350,000 global hotel reviews that mention lighting are criticising it. Lots and lots of people are being mean about light. Which is sad as light is so nice.

My home town London gets a particular beating by the light police with close to 10,000 reviews complaining about “dim, bad and sparse” lighting in their rooms.

One hotel’s lighting was compared to a railway station waiting room. Poor train station lights being held up as the what not to do of the lighting world. And plenty of people apparently can’t work in their room because of poor lighting.

I did not know this was happening. That we all got so pernickety about the way in which our light is delivered. I wonder if Thomas Edison saw this coming?

According to Osram, the folk who commissioned the research (and who help hotels with their lighting – they’re bound to be delighted with so many people being disillusioned with illumination!) guests will look for somewhere else to stay next time if the light doesn’t work for them.

How terrifying for hotels! Spending so much time making sure the place looks great, has a super view or location, excellent food and wine, lovely staff… and now they have to worry about whether or not people like the light bulbs.

My office lights don’t care if I like them or not. They occasionally switch themselves off for no particular reason. It’s very annoying.

I, a grown woman, have to stand up now, wave my arms around and jump up and down for five minutes if I want to be able to see. So to the people out there who aren’t happy with their hotel lighting I say this: no matter how bad your hotel lighting is at least it doesn’t make you dance.

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