A few months ago, I visited Hainan Island
, on the South China Sea, where they are taking tourism very seriously. Indeed, they are in the process of building two
seven-star hotels. This was astonishing
! On the flight to China, I had been watching an in-flight video about Dubai, which stated that Dubai's Burj Al Arab
is currently the world's only seven-star hotel. So there's only one in the world - and Hainan Island plans to have two. What does it take to make a seven-star hotel? On rare occasions, I've been lucky enough to stay at five-star hotels. In general, these are pretty good... so what the heck could make something so good that it's worth seven stars?
The truth is: There's no such thing as a seven-star hotel!
Or a six-star. It's all hype. The maximum possible is five. So why does the new Pangu Hotel
in Beijing openly claim to be a seven-star hotel? The official reason: in this case, the reference is to the Big Dipper star shape. OK, so there's one seven-star hotel in the world... and I've got to say, it's cheating.
Incidentally, the Burj Al Arab says that it never advertised itself as a seven-star hotel, and it was being hyped by a journalist who attended the hotel's opening in 1999. Presumably, management has been vigorously denying it ever since...