HotelTitle : Hotel

Author : Arthur Hailey

ISBN-10: 0399991255

ISBN-13 : 978-0399991257

Paperback : 420 pages

The Plot :

Hotel by Arthur Hailey was first released in 1965. It follows a myriad of characters within a work week somehow associated with the St. Gregory Hotel in New Orleans. From the management to its employees to the guests each and everyone has their own agenda.

At the centre of it all is the hotel’s general manager, Peter McDermott. With a past that has him blacklisted, this job is his only option. Using his skills and wit Peter runs a tight ship but he has to deal with one crisis after another all in a days’ work.

Warren Trent is the owner of St. Gregory but is on the brink of losing it to Curtis O’Keefe, who in turn owns a chain of hotels, due to the upcoming unpayable and unrenewable mortgage. With less than 5 days to make alternate arrangements, Trent is desperate to hold onto his hotel. Meanwhile, Peter and Trent’s assistant help an old guest as he is fighting for his life in one of the rooms.

On another floor is Marsha Preyscott narrowly escapes being raped by a group of teenage boys, who in their confessions name Herbie Chandler, the hotels bell captain for orchestrating the whole thing. In an attempt to deal with the incident, Peter decides to report it to Trent and Chandler is kicked out of the hotel. In his rage he starts to plot his revenge against Peter.

Another interesting set of characters are the Duke and Dutches of Croydon who are hiding out at the hotel because they have been involved in a hit and run that has made news headlines. They are also being blackmailed by someone in the hotel. A common hotel thief Keycase Milne, has managed to find a simple way of getting hold of hotel room keys, which he then uses to burgle the rooms including the room of the Duke and Dutches.

Then there are the employees of the hotel who steal from the hotel in the most subtle of ways. The cleaning lady smuggles steaks under her clothing, the bartender dilutes the drinks and uses the excess for his profit and some of the other employees help rent out rooms to prostitutes on an hourly basis.

All the different stories come together with totally unexpected twists and turns including a group of characters caught in an elevator that is about to free fall.

Overall it is an exciting read. Each of the characters is so beautifully created and each storyline is gripping. With the daily chaotic goings on of the hotel, the reader is left at the edge of their seat. The best part of all is how all the story lines unfold into the gripping climax. A definite must read.


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