tue 29/09/2020

A Very British Hotel Chain: Inside Best Western, Series Finale, Channel 4 review - let's hear it for Alasdair the hotel inspector | reviews, news & interviews

A Very British Hotel Chain: Inside Best Western, Series Finale, Channel 4 review - let's hear it for Alasdair the hotel inspector

A Very British Hotel Chain: Inside Best Western, Series Finale, Channel 4 review - let's hear it for Alasdair the hotel inspector

Inexplicable fly-on-the-wall doc throws caution to the winds

Rob Paterson, CEO

It’s impossible to tell whether this reality-doc series (C4) came to praise Best Western hotels or kill it off entirely.

It’s impossible to tell whether this reality-doc series (C4) came to praise Best Western hotels or kill it off entirely. Some viewers have been weeping with laughter at the David Brent-style antics of the company’s Aussie CEO Rob Paterson and his motivational slogans (Smash It!, Give a *** etc), while others have hailed it as a red-flag warning about how not to run a business. With the pandemic crisis, there might not even be a business left to run.

This final instalment threw caution to the winds and charged ever deeper into fantasy-land, not least with the company’s promotional Christmas video starring the Nativity donkeys chilling out in a luxury BW hotel, guzzling cocktails and sticking their hooves out from under the bedclothes. Diane Morgan’s voice-over sustained its irritatingly facetious tone, as well as the show’s weird fixation with major trunk roads. Having explained that BW’s hotels are “served by 18 of the UK’s top 20 motorways” – who knew there was a motorway chart, and how does a motorway get itself on it? – she couldn’t let it lie. We were told that from BW’s HQ in York, Edinburgh was “200 miles north up the A1M and A1.” Meanwhile, Terii (director of Business Development) “is on the A413 heading down to Heathrow” (pictured below, the Best Western Premier Mount Pleasant Hotel, Doncaster).

Star of this week’s show was Alasdair the hotel inspector, who takes a sadistic delight in putting the fear of God into hoteliers across the BW chain. Aptly dubbed “the pedantichrist of hotel standards”, Alasdair loves his work so much that he takes it home with him (“I’m inspecting my own house even when I’m living in it. Crazy!”). Being gay, he believes, is one of the keys to his success. “I go in there with detail! I go in there with finesse! I go in there with style!… I think I have that in spades because part of my personality is because of my sexuality.” They should give this guy his own show.

As for Rob Paterson, apparently he has a long track record in the hotel trade, but here he looked like a kids’ party magician who’d somehow busked his way into the top job. His finest faux pas was after ski-jumper Eddie the Eagle was the mystery guest at BW’s annual conference. “I think Best Western is the Eddie the Eagle of the hotel business!” raved Rob. Very British indeed – plucky, determined and famous for finishing last.

Star of the show was Alasdair the hotel inspector, who takes a sadistic delight in putting the fear of God into hoteliers

rating

Editor Rating: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

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