Oh, you’ve never stayed in a hotel with communal bathrooms?
Fear not, brave traveler. Far from being some nightmarish situation that you would like to imagine, staying in a place that forces you to share that little room you use for 19 minutes a day is actually quite nice.
Stef and I have now twice stayed at The Pod Hotel in Midtown New York City. It’s a lovely place that we would recommend to anyone willing to step out of the norm and give it a shot (we did go back after all).
We reasoned that sharing the facilities with a few other folks in exchange for a nightly savings of about $150 was a pretty good trade-off. It is a great trade-off when the location of the place gets factored in. A block off the Lexington subway line (4,5,6) and a block and a half from another (J,M,R,Q) in addition to being a short walk to the Theater District, Central Park, Rockefeller Center, and almost everything else - and to top it all off, the neighborhood is quaint and friendly and pretty much wonderful.
Once in a blue moon, you have to “hold it” while you wait for one of the red lights to disappear, letting you know that bathroom #4 is now vacant. And about once per trip, God forbid, you have to shower while the air is still slightly humid from the last person’s shower.
It is principally beautiful, an ingenious way to force yourself to experience things you love but avoid out of Western habit. Forced minimalism, forced community, and forced humility - all contributing to forced frugality.
Lesson: The Communal Bath is Your Friend.