Name that Hotel

First published: 12th November 2010

Last night, I was just leaving my workplace when a taxi drew up. The driver leaned over and asked directions. Wow! I'm really a local now, even taxi drivers ask me the way.

He was asking about the location of L'hotel, a new building in the area. More precisely, it is "L'hotel Island South", the group has others elsewhere in Hong Kong and the world. No doubt, the branding consultant recommended the name as evoking French sophistication, L'hotel being an abbreviation of Le hotel, "THE hotel". Perhaps the branding consultant should have thought a little further, to locations where English is rarely spoken, and French almost never. The taxi driver didn't pronounce the name with a suitable French accent, "Le'otel", he said it as it was written, "El Hotel", perhaps implying a hotel so undistinguished that it only deserves a letter designation, not a name.

Well, I was able to give directions, I trust that his passenger arrived quickly, and didn't have to wait in line at the Q Hotel.