There is a whispered, hushed acronym bandied about the hotel industry that I was made privy to recently while staying at an impossibly romantic tropical island resort – the Barry White factor of one particular room was off the charts.
Over dinner, my travelling companions and I discussed this observation and as we dissected just what made the room feel so amorous, the industry expert interjected.
“BBI is what we call it.” Our interest piqued, we turned to hear more. “Bedroom Bonkability Index.”
Of which the resort we stayed in must score close to a perfect ten. It echoes a sentiment among many in the travel industry, the cliche being “If it doesn’t happen here, it will never happen.”
The elements that ratchet the bonkability factor include outdoor bathtubs or swimming pools, well-positioned beds, cushioned walls and bathrooms that are especially spacious. One of the more specific attributes mentioned was a television on a swivel stand that allows guests to watch pornography no matter where they are in the room.
In our quest to bring you the friskiest of rooms, we came across some establishments and operators that were considerably more tacky than tasteful. Take The Mile High Club, a chartered aircraft company in the UK that has a set-up similar to the back of a VW kombi van and allows couples more than half an hour of “private time” while airborne. Somewhat amusingly, it was recently grounded due to concerns that the pilot would become distracted.
Then there’s Propeller Island in Germany, which takes the biscuit for the most outlandish couples proposition. The Diamond Room is all mirrors, on different angles so you will never miss a moment reflected back at you. Another room has a one-way window to another hotel room for voyeuristic neighbours to peer through.
If that’s not your style, there are toned-down options that still make the grade as the most amorous rooms in the world. Dirty weekend away experts Mr & Mrs Smith have some quantifiable criteria when it comes to what makes a hotel room sexy.
“Romance comes in many guises so there are no hard and fast rules for creating the perfect boudoir. In saying that, a sexy room has to do more than just get the basics right – it has to delight, excite, and surprise,” Mr & Mrs Smith general manager Australia Rowena Fitzgerald said.
QT Sydney is seen as one of Australia’s sexier hotels and its quirky irreverence has a lot to do with guests losing their inhibitions. The room design achieves this with indirect mood lighting, glass walls and contrasting textures.
“There are lambs wool throws on the bed that are sexy in red, black and chocolate. All the bed heads are leather, it’s a more sensual feel to have the difference in textures and colours,” QT Sydney room designer Shelley Indyk said.
Another room that makes full use of leather padding is the Marilyn Suite at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. One of the poolside cabana rooms was where Ms Monroe spent a year living in her twenties. The bed is located on a raised platform with a mirror overhead – this is the capital of vanity, after all. At the head of the bed a backlit black and white portrait of Marilyn hangs in what must be one of the first mirror selfies and the walls are made of snow white leather.
On that note, forget red, white seems to be the boudoir colour du jour. Mr & Mrs Smith awarded the sexiest hotel room in the world to the all-white Corfu Suite at London’s Blakes Hotel. “Things we look for at Mr & Mrs Smith include sumptuous d√àcor, privacy and a bed you never want to leave. A romantic hotel room should be like a romantic partner and not reveal everything straight away,” Fitzgerald said.
It seems the little touches and the unexpected up the ante from sleepy to starry-eyed. “We love a room with hidden surprises – a jaw-dropping view of the ocean behind the shutters, outdoor showers in a private courtyard, or a bathtub big enough for two.”
That brings us to a room just as important as the bedroom – the bathroom. The most indulgent of bathrooms will have two showers; one rain shower and one high pressure. At a safari camp in South Africa, I was privy to this ultimate indulgence. Better yet, the showers were in a glass cylinder exposed to the African bush. As I was alone, rest assured dear reader, I tested them both by alternating between the two.
But there’s no need to share the showerhead at Amangiri in the desert plains of Utah either. The bathroom is a stunner with a sunken bath and two rain showers clad by an all glass surround with views of the stark wilderness; nothing surer to arouse those animal instincts.