Not all hotels are as accommodating as the Langham, Boston Hotel. Leslie Keller Gleser, former communications manager, reported that when a traveling menagerie from Busch Gardens arrived, special requests had to be met: The anteater required a smoking room because the windows would open, and the animal had, shall we say, a distinctive aroma; the flamingos needed a handicapped-accessible room, as they love to walk into the shower; and the mountain cats received a room with two beds since they don't like to share.
The Kimpton, Loews, Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons, and Fairmont chains are especially pet-friendly, but many accommodations allow pets and provide special perks. Ask about weight restrictions, as some limit the size of your pet. A sampling:
The James, Chicago: Pets receive a travel kit with a service menu from the nearby Pooch Spa, pet menu from David Burke's Primehouse restaurant (steak tartare for dogs, smoked salmon lollipops for cats), clean-up bags, treat, toy, and pet-tourist map. In-room amenities include a pet bed, food and water bowls with floor mat, litter box for cats, lint brush, and a carob truffle at turn-down. Upon request, pets may receive raincoats and galoshes, retractable leashes, walks, day care, and dog training. Possibilities at the spa include an aromatherapy massage or bath with conditioning, pawdicure, and swimming in an indoor saltwater lap pool built especially for dogs.
Cost per pet is $75 a night. 877-JAMES55 (526-3755); james hotels.com.
Loews Vanderbilt Hotel, Nashville: The Hounds of Music package allows canines to cut their first CD. Included are accommodations in a pet-friendly suite, vocal training, professional in-studio recording session, pet room-service voucher, massage, limo ride to the studio, and personalized CD case.
Cost is $1,599 per night. 615-320-1700; loewshotels.com/hotels/nashville/.
Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort, Naples, Fla.: Have your pooch learn proper petiquette with classes taught by certified Humane Society instructors. Classes include puppy kindergarten, good manners, and obedience level 1. Canine guests receive turndown amenities and their owners are given guides to pet-friendly parks.
The program charges a nonrefundable $150 cleaning fee per stay. 239-593-2000; ritzcarlton .com.
Camp Fideaux, Sun Valley, Idaho: Accompany your dog to camp in pet-friendly Sun Valley. Organized activities include hikes, doggy art walk, training sessions, and the option to work with an animal communicator. A massage is available to soothe dogs' post-hike muscles. Lodging is provided in a variety of dog-friendly properties. Meals (extra) are served in restaurants with outdoor dog patios.
Prices vary with lodging, but start at about $1,000 a week for two people. 208-721-1400, 800-634-3347 ext. 1.
Hotel Palomar, Washington, D.C.: Pets on the Reigning Cats and Dogs package receive tags, a bowl, can lids, all natural dog treats, and bottled water. While their owners relax during the wine hour, pets can sip from the three-tiered Bark Bar and enjoy a snack from "The Dish." Upgrades include in-room pet massage, thermo-regulating pet beds, and snug rugs. Dog walking and grooming are available.
Rate is $249 a night for a deluxe king, with additional nights at $225. 877-866-3070, 202-448-1800; hotelpalomar-dc.com/pald cp_pet.html.
Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, Calif.: On the Su'ruff Camp package, dogs wear board shorts or a bandanna for a one-hour lesson with the Coronado Surfing Academy at the town's Dog Beach. They also receive a copy of "The Dog's Guide to Surfing" and a surf & turf (tenderloin and salmon) room-service meal.
Rates begin at $389 a night in a water-view room. 800-815-6397, 619-424-4000; loewshotels.com/en/Hotels/Coronado-Bay-Resort/Offers/SpecialOffers.aspx.
Traveling alone (as Fido sees it)? Consider staying at a hotel such as Boston's Fairmont Copley Plaza, which lets guests ease their loneliness for their pets by taking resident black Lab, Miss Catie Copley, for a walk.
fairmont.com/copleyplaza, 800-257-7544, 617-267-5300.