Blog Usability For Older Readers
Hot Town, Summer in the City

Let's All Retire To the Hilton

[EDITORIAL NOTE: After we discussed one kind of retirement living earlier this week, I was reminded of this post from a couple of years ago. I received it in an email which means it may have made its way around the web a thousand times and you already know it. Even if that is so, it's almost credible, wonderfully funny and worth another read.]

"No nursing home for me! I'm checking into the Hilton Inn. With the average cost for a nursing home per day reaching $188.00, there is a better way when we get old and feeble. I have already checked on reservations at the Hilton. For a combined long-term stay discount and senior discount, it is $49.23 per night. That leaves $138.77 a day for:
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner in any restaurant I want, or room service
  • Laundry, gratuities, and special TV movies

Plus, they provide a swimming pool, a workout room, a lounge, washer, dryer, etc. Most have free toothpaste and razors and all have free shampoo and soap. They treat you like a customer, not a patient. $5.00 worth of tips a day will have the entire staff scrambling to help you.

There is a city bus stop out front and seniors ride free. The handicap bus will also pick you up (if you fake a reasonably good limp). To meet other nice people, call a church bus on Sundays. For a change of scenery, take the airport shuttle bus and eat at one of the nice restaurants there. While you're at the airport, fly somewhere. Otherwise, the cash keeps building up.

It takes months to get into decent nursing homes. Hilton will take your reservation today. And you are not stuck in one place forever. You can move from Hilton to Hilton, or even from city to city. Want to see Hawaii? They have a Hilton there, too - the wonderful Hilton Hawaiian Village and Spa.

TV broken? Light bulbs need changing? Need a mattress replaced? No problem. They fix everything and apologize for the inconvenience. The Inn has a night security person and daily room service. The maid checks if you are okay. If not, they will call the undertaker or an ambulance. If you fall and break a hip, Medicare will pay for the hip, and Hilton will upgrade you to a suite for the rest of your life.

And no worries about visits from family. They will always be glad to find you at the Inn and will probably check in for a few days' mini-vacation. The grandkids can use the pool.

What more can you ask for?

So, when I reach the golden age, I'll face it with a grin. Just forward all my email to the Hilton Inn."

Upon telling this story at a dinner with friends and too much red wine, we came up with even more benefits the Hilton provides to retirees:

Most standard rooms have coffeemakers, easy chairs with ottomans, and satellite TV - all you need to enjoy a cozy afternoon. After a movie and a good nap, you can check on your children (free local phone calls), then take a stroll to the lounge or restaurant where you meet new and exotic people every day. Many Hiltons even feature live entertainment on the weekends.

Often they have special offers, too, like the Kids Eat Free Program. You can invite your grandkids over after school to have a free dinner with you. Just tell them not to bring more than three friends.

If you want to travel, but are a bit skittish about unfamiliar surroundings, in a Hilton you'll always feel at home because wherever you go, the rooms all look the same.

And if you're getting a little absent-minded in your old days, you never have to worry about not finding your room. Your electronic key fits only one door and the helpful bellman or desk clerk is on duty 24/7.

I told Stephen Bollenback, CEO of Hilton this story. I'm happy to report that he was positively ecstatic at the idea of us checking in for a year or more at one of their hotels. Stephen said we could have easily knocked them down to $40 a night.

See you at the Hilton. And not just for a "Bounce Back Weekend," but for the rest of our lives.

[At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Joy Des Jardins relates her childhood misadventures at trying to avoid dreaded needles in The Doctor is Out.]

Comments

I think his might just work for me!

Here In Turkey the majority of the ex-pat community are retirees living in property they bought to retire to. It would seem that they are fine until their late sixties when they don't want to be maintaining the garden or hassling house repairs and many of them are now trying to sell their properties so they can rent instead and have freedom to travel. Seems like another version of the the Hilton idea to me. The only reason the Hilton wouldn't work for me, and I suspect you too, is I couldn't bear to be without my books.

What a great idea. If you love travel you can probably get a cruise ship to give you a reduced rate also. I have always said I would rather spend my money traveling than on doctors. The ship has a doctor on board, excellent restaurants, a library, gym, pool and other amenities. You also have free entertainment at night. Who could ask for anything more?

Oh wait, the grandkids can't visit
and for some that would kill the deal.

Hilton? How about living on a cruise ship?

http://tinyurl.com/25sbg8

Sounds lovely; but, I wonder which extension one calls to have one's toenails clipped?

Very interesting information Ronni!! :-)

I wonder if any elders actually live in the Hilton. It sounds pretty good in theory, especially if there's a community. It would be boring if there was only you, and other guests only stayed for a night or two.

I assure you there are many retirees living in downtown hotels, although possibly not as nice as the Hilton...

I'm glad you're addressing this. I like the cruise ship/hotel idea. I've thought I'd like to gather friends to live in a neighborhood in our own homes and with a community building where we could gather for meals when we want to, socialize, exercise, etc. So I might move to some kind of retirement place.

Many Hiltons have spas...get a pedicure and the toenail clipping problem is solved.

"he was positively ecstatic at the idea of us checking in for a year or more at one of their hotels" -- really?!? Gosh, I would've thought they had some limit on how long a person could stay. He would really ENCOURAGE this?!? What if people started taking this seriously and his hotels were 90% retirees? He would LIKE that?!? I'm amazed!

Maybe my memory is a bit fuzzy about this, but I seem to remember from when I attended New York University (not telling when), there were always some wealthier NYC residents who lived in residential suites at hotels. Besides the Hiltons, we also have Extended Stay America, which offers a full kitchen.

As for having books around, when a crisis hit, I gave away more than half of a library worth thousands of dollars. I mostly don't find I miss it as much as I thought I would. I can get most anything I need or want from local and university libraries. You can usually gain access to a university library -- and inter-university book loans -- by making a rather small donation. And who needs cookbooks anymore, with internet recipes a keystroke away.

I remember when I was a kid in the 50's that there were retired old guys living smack on the ocean in the Hotel Villa Maria in Santa Cruz. They had the entire 3rd floor. We kids would sneak up there and run if we saw anyone as we were forbidden to disturb them. I wonder how much that cost then? Maybe $12 a day? It was not swanky but very comfortable and on a cliff overlooking the beach. Today, it belongs to the Catholic church and is a retreat house. The sisters have it good!
Also, there were many folks living in hotels in downtown Tulsa ( my Dad's hometown). Nice hotels- not seedy.
Hmmm. I am going to run the numbers on this!!

The Seattle Times ran an interesting story yesterday on outsourcing elder care to India. http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis.cgi/web/vortex/display?slug=indiahomes03&date=20070803&query=outsourcing+elderly

Delightful, thank you. Perhaps a little higher now than 40 a night, but still a good value for the price.

Yep, I'm with you. Hilton, here I come. $40 a day is cheaper than rent many places!

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