TAKING UPSCALE TO NEW HEIGHTS: With competition growing among top-of-the-line lodgings, the people who operate these establishments are ratcheting up the level of luxury.
According to the 2001 Zagat survey of U.S. hotels, spas and resorts, carefully planted chocolates on pillows, jacuzzis and terry cloth bathrobes apparently no longer cut it when it comes to pampering.
Instead, some of the swankier places are offering such amenities as heated toilet seats, binoculars, new toys for kids and feather beds. They've also responded to an increase in women business travelers by providing upscale toiletries and cosmetics as well as added security.
Aside from generous amenities, more hotels are equipping their rooms with high speed-Internet connections, multiple phone lines, fax machines and big desks.
With all the extra frills, it's no wonder that the average price of a night's stay at the surveyed hotels has risen, with the average double-occupancy rate reaching $221.
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