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Tara Ariano

S02.E06: Four Seasons Inn

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I'm interested in seeing which episode my local station shows this week, as this episode was shown to us last week.  We never saw the Calumet Inn episode.  Maybe they'll show us that one this week???  I really hope they're not permanently showing us the wrong episode... it means that I can't come here and snark!!

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I know!  I just wanted to smooch Rumpole!

 

Hope you get to see the Calumet Inn episode; what a pair of sisters they are!

Edited by Brattinella

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What the hell happened to that place?  I used to go there for dinner all the time with my parents (the last time I think was nine years ago?), and the food was always good and the place looked nice (if a bit old-fashioned in that New Englandy way).  Sad, really.

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I do not understand people working for no money. Sorry; never will.

 

So, how cute was GR with his dog? Did you catch his voice doing the baby talk thing that people do with babies and animals? So cute!

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At first, I thought Sandy, the owner, was broke and unable to pay any of his employees.  Then, after a good talking-to with Gordon, he decides to start paying everyone!!!  Did he not pay them simply because it was too much of a hassle?  I don't get this episode at all.

 

I didn't feel sorry for any of the employees, either.  Why were they working for no money?  Okay, the hula-hoop instructor (with poor hula hoop skilz I might add) may have to work for free, but what about everyone else?  The chef who wasn't allowed to cook the "right" way mentioned a wife and kids "at home".  Is McDonalds not hiring in Vermont?  It pays better than nothing!

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I didn't understand the dog being in the kitchen; I thought that was against the regulations for food prep/cooking areas.?

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I felt dirty just watching the first 30 minutes. I wish they would go back and do a 12 weeks later update to see if the owners kept up with the recommendations.

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And why are the employees working for months with no pay? What is wrong with them all that they agreed to this comped hotel room rubbish? Were they all homeless before and needed a place to live? How did the head chef make rent and feed his children? Ridiculous! They should have all gone on strike until he paid them. Or called in the Labor board. This is America!

And for them to all start crying and he acting all magnanimous like he's doing something...dude, this is what you should have always done. I don't even think Sandy is giving them any back pay.

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Tonight's episode hit on all the Ramsayisms: the Speedo, orange glasses, and semen light. I almost wet myself when Gordon opened up his suitcase (which didn't contain clothing) and he had glasses to hand out to those hotel guests. All of them were standing around discussing the stains. Oy.

 

Initially I had assumed that Sandy was too broke to pay his staff. I don't know why the staff stuck around while not getting paid. There was a lot of unexplained things in this episode.

 

The hula hoop instructor can't hula hoop either. Not that I'm an expert or anything, but WOW.

 

The inn has a lot of potential and I think it's good that they're getting some good reviews. For a guy who claims to have always wanted to run an inn, I was surprised that he let everything go to pot right away. I think it's one thing to have passion for a project, but there are other parts to the equation that are required to be successful such as some knowledge about the hospitality industry. Or even the ability to hire on the right people with that expertise.

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I think the hula hoop bit was added in for some type of comic relief. She said she was a massage therapist, and if that part was true she could have been making decent money elsewhere. I think the whole episode was one huge piece of contrived made-for-TV script. Gordon thinking he's going to a Four Seasons Resort was the dead giveaway in the first five minutes, because you know his staff has already been there to set up cameras and lights.

Also....when Layla was underneath Gordon's table.... did she fart? Did I hear that? LOL

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The WTF is strong with this one. Why on earth would you go on television and admit to a dozen cases of ongoing labor law violations? 

 

Rumpole really does look like Rumpole, doesn't he.

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I think the ticket to success for this place is to amp up the dog resort angle.  Tons of people want to take their dogs on vacation and having a "spa" for them in a close but separate area is better than leaving them behind in a kennel.  He could even get add-on business by having a pet themed gift shop - "My mom/dad went to Vermont and all I got was this tee-shirt".  

 

I'm still befuddled by employees working for NO money.  So what if he gives you a free room to live in?  What about food, car, clothes, personal items, healthcare, entertainment?  Do they eat at the inn and make togas out of the bed sheets?  Those little hotel shampoo bottles only go so far.  Does Hula Hoop girl provide a nightly show in lieu of hitting the town for a movie?  Don't get it.  I always wonder if the various State Dpt's of Labor swoop in for an audit after GR leaves town.  Those freebies from sheet suppliers and Overstock.com will need to be sold off quickly to cover the fines these jackholes will incur for NOT PAYING people.

 

And when will "hoteliers" learn that if you have an outdoor pool on property & you list it as an amenity, you gotta clean it!  If I ever drove into a hotel or motel and saw the pool or outdoor facilities in such shitty shape it would clue me in that the management does not care.  I'd assume the lackadaisical attitude continues on to the rooms and restaurant as well.  I'd complete a U-Turn in their driveway and keep going down the road to the next place.

 

 

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When the guest were standing around looking at filthy/nasty bedding & room and Ramsey asked who would likely return for another stay. I would have said not only will I never return, I also want my money back.

 

Ramsey thinking that he was going to be staying at a 'Four Seasons" hotel was a bunch of WTFever. So he thought that they were filming an episode of Hotel Hell at the 'Four Seasons ? Really? He thought that one of their hotels needed his help. Really?

 

fourseasons.com

Edited by Taylorh2
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Another unsatisfying episode.  The log wall was as hideous as the old wallpaper.  The only thing I liked was the dogs, especially Rumpole.

 

I think the ticket to success for this place is to amp up the dog resort angle.  Tons of people want to take their dogs on vacation and having a "spa" for them in a close but separate area is better than leaving them behind in a kennel.  He could even get add-on business by having a pet themed gift shop - "My mom/dad went to Vermont and all I got was this tee-shirt".

 

 

Great idea, BusyOctober.  He could even have a grooming station and partner with a local groomer to provide on-call services to guests.  The outdoor area could be upgraded with dog park amenities, too. 

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I'm really confused about something: If he had the money to pay the staff, why wasn't he? I was just assuming that he was letting them stay in the hotel for free (room & board) in lieu of a paycheck because the hotel wasn't bringing in enough money ?

 

I don't believe that he had all that staff and wasn't paying any of them actual pay .

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And yet another show where I'm rooting for the owner to fail so that someone with a clue can have the place instead. That guy didn't need Gordon, he needed a forensic accountant. Shiny new (and yet depressingly jail-cell-like) kennels, carpets that needed to be taken out and shot? Not paying the staff? Given the quote from him here (where we also learn that pretty grass was newly-laid):

Starting on May 10, eight to 14 people will be working at the inn. All employees are required to take part in the show.

"They opt out, they find a new job," said MacDougall.

Seriously? He thinks being fired by him is a threat?

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That wallpaper was just...wow.  That's a lot of floral, all over.  I did like the log walls, a nice modern flip that still conveys "rustic" but all I could think of was how difficult that would be to dust and keep clean.  It won't be long before people start cramming their chewed gum and used condoms into the spaces between the rounds.  Every room would need a ladder in order to properly vacuum/dust all the way to the ceiling.

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I'm far from an interior designer. But I for one found the redecorated sitting space in the lobby area, and the two redecorated guest rooms, absolutely HIDEOUS. It looked like all the "Room Essentials" dorm room gear at Target exploded into each room. Wayyyyy too much color and tacky cheap-chic pieces. The hotel obviously has a stately, traditional New England vibe to it, and looks it from the outside. The overwhelming floral print wallpaper was way too busy, but the redecorated rooms were just as busy -- in a less sophisticated way. The guest rooms looked like teenage girls' bedrooms, not hotel rooms. I think they were going for an argyle look with the triangle patterns on the wall, but they ended up looking very sloppy and WTF.

 

The log walls could have been cool but came off looking cheap and unfinished. They would have been better off with more of a wood siding-type motif. Just so, so bad. Those remodels make the often-questionable re-dos on "Hotel Impossible" and "Restaurant Impossible" look positively five-star in comparison! I have a sick feeling that the rooms were decorated to Gordon's personal taste. Please stay in the kitchen, Gordon. And out of speedos!!! My eyes!!!

Edited by HelloOutThere
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A rustic wood wainscoting halfway up the wall with a moss green color the rest of the way up the wall would have been much nicer. And much more relaxing. Wooden shutters that the guests could open and adjust for the amount of light they wanted, instead of curtains, keeping with the historic New England location.

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The interior makeovers on this show have been uniformly bad and definitely at odds with the nature of each hotel they've featured. Why not leave the 'vintage' wallpaper on one wall of each room and paint the rest a complementary color? Or add a chair rail and leave the paper below the rail with paint above (or wainscoting below rail as cooksdelight suggested)? There was no rhyme, reason, or personality to the makeover.

Edited by designing1
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I also thought the new decor was awful, for both the check in room and the hotel rooms.  They did not convey at all what I imagine when I think of a country inn.  I thought that part of the makeover was an epic fail. 

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That guy didn't need Gordon, he needed a forensic accountant.

 

 

And so much more, Jamoche, so much more!   Let's start with a psychiatrist (regular sessions) and medication!  No one needs to be that weepy*.  I think he also needs a good dentist...but maybe he has one; seems like his brownish/yellowish teeth looked less stained in some of the scenes.  Someone should check his alcohol consumption.  I think there's a lot wrong with this guy.  

 

*Weepy.  Maybe it's contagious.  So many people at that inn wept about everything.

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*Weepy.  Maybe it's contagious.  So many people at that inn wept about everything.

 They're weeping because they aren't getting a paycheck and are apparently too dumb to realize they are being screwed.

 

And yeah, it's one thing to cry at the end with the reveal, but this dude was crying all the time. I thought it was weird. Not just because he was a male, either. I would have thought the same if a female cried that much.

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I couldn't stand looking at the guy's disgusting teeth and along with the crying and shaking i thought maybe he was into meth, but his teeth looked a little better at the end. It makes no sense that people were existing without pay. How do you buy toothpaste, a birthday present or go to a movie? Also don't believe for a minute this woman was hired to give hula hoop lessons. Most of the people we saw at the Inn were middle aged, not likely to hula hoop.

 

I didn't like the decor of the new rooms either and I could have done a better job. The odd triangles on the wall along with the fake log look just didn't go together. The reception room also looked like just another hotel room, I would have walked right by it. And GR must have some kind of love affair with his own body to insist on semi nude shots each episode. I mean he is thin but no dreamboat by any means.

Edited by Madding crowd

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At first, I thought Sandy, the owner, was broke and unable to pay any of his employees.  Then, after a good talking-to with Gordon, he decides to start paying everyone!!!  Did he not pay them simply because it was too much of a hassle?  I don't get this episode at all.

 

I didn't feel sorry for any of the employees, either.  Why were they working for no money?  Okay, the hula-hoop instructor (with poor hula hoop skilz I might add) may have to work for free, but what about everyone else?  The chef who wasn't allowed to cook the "right" way mentioned a wife and kids "at home".  Is McDonalds not hiring in Vermont?  It pays better than nothing!

 

I have a life long history with Vermont, plus ancestors that founded towns there and I do love the place but it is kinda......how shall I say this?  Special.  Like dude, there are under 30 Micky D's in the entire state and none in that town, that's for sure!  So I totally get it that the staff put up with not being paid on a regular basis.  I just don't understand how you could live like that for your entire job.  I mean, a woman needs health and beauty aids, know what I mean?  I don't know, my BS meter went off with that claim.

 

Could Sandy's teeth be a little yellower?  I don't think so!  I know he was over his head but could he be any more of a sad sack, too?  Yikes.  What an odd assortment of people, more like a family than employees.  Yikes.  That one waitress was so loopy I'd almost recommend meds. for that. 

 

And ditto on the awful room makeovers that don't fit the flavor of the inn or its location at all and look like a design student made over their college dorm.  And again with the freaking GREEN WALLS, although these were a different shade of green than the last two hotels.  And what the purpose of those triangles was was completely lost on me.  Much better work is done on "Restaurant Impossible" with the help of HGTV designers.  You'd think Fox and Gordon would spring for better than this.

 

Layla was adorable and I think she's a spotted English Setter if I'm not mistaken....Although I'm not 100% sure.

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At least this broke the pattern from the previous two shows with a hotel owner who really needed help, instead of the alcoholic millionaire or the two spoiled rotten sisters. But we were still handed some stuff that was hard to swallow. I believe that maybe the housekeeper was working in exchange for room and board, not completely unheard of at a struggling business in an economically depressed areas. But I certainly don't believe that applied to every employee, especially the chef.

 

And the show is now really insulting our intelligence if it expected us to believe that GR thought he was going to a Four Season Resort for an episode of "Hotel Hell." Initially I thought he was making a joke, but then it just kept belaboring it. Weird.

 

Ditto to what others have said about the makeover. I didn't think the first room we saw was all that bad. About what I'd expect at a Vermont country inn. (Though not one charging $209 a night, if we can believe that. More like $89).

 

Years before there was ever a Four Seasons luxury hotel chain I bet there were literally hundreds of motels or hotels across the country with "four seasons" in their name, meaning that it's a place you can stay in for all four seasons. "Four seasons" is a common phrase in the English language. Despite the armies of lawyers hired by corporate America, not everything can be copyrighted. The only way the Four Seasons chain could bring legal action is if a hotel was using their trademarked logo or advertising in a way intentionally meant to mislead people.

Edited by bluepiano
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And the show is now really insulting our intelligence if it expected us to believe that GR thought he was going to a Four Season Resort for an episode of "Hotel Hell." Initially I thought he was making a joke, but then it just kept belaboring it. Weird.

I chalk it up to Gordon thinking his viewers are really that stupid. He does it on his other shows as well, creating drama and conflict by any means possible. One day he's going to cross the line, I think, and will be banished from television, wondering what happened.

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I too thought there was some sort of substance abuse going on.  When Sandy came out dressed in a suit all cleaned up I thought "detox".  Otherwise how could he all of a sudden say he could pay his employees?  No mention of a struggle.  Like suddenly there was a bunch of cash just lying around.  One of those things I feel in my bones.

 

And Cooksdelight, I'm going to give Gordon the benefit of the doubt and not think he was insulting the audience's intelligence.  Actually I thought he was insulting the owner's intelligence in making him think he was actually expecting the real Four Seasons, and we were in on it like a cruel joke.  That's the way I took it.

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Gordon claiming not to know things until he arrives and reads it in the paper, for instance, is now a thing on this show. 

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My son was watching with us one time and he said  "why is he surprised, don't his people do research before he gets to the hotel ? "

 

Yes, they do.

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I wish we would see more of the hotel reno, a la Hotel Impossible, but that's just not Gordon's thing, maybe?

 

I don't imagine the owner stayed out of the kitchen. If his employees couldn't get a paycheck, how could they keep the owner in check?

 

I agree, going with the dog resort theme was probably the best idea. I know they'd make a killing, especially for the city evacuees at certain times of the year.

 

Not much else to say,  but each episode has the exact same formula.

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And Cooksdelight, I'm going to give Gordon the benefit of the doubt and not think he was insulting the audience's intelligence.  Actually I thought he was insulting the owner's intelligence in making him think he was actually expecting the real Four Seasons, and we were in on it like a cruel joke.  That's the way I took it.

I suspect Gordon was making an exaggerated point about customers' expectations at the name. Despite his feigned ignorance, there is no way Sandy would be unaware of the identical name and potential for profit from customer mistaking his "Four Seasons" for a real one.

Years before there was ever a Four Seasons luxury hotel chain I bet there were literally hundreds of motels or hotels across the country with "four seasons" in their name, meaning that it's a place you can stay in for all four seasons. "Four seasons" is a common phrase in the English language. Despite the armies of lawyers hired by corporate America, not everything can be copyrighted. The only way the Four Seasons chain could bring legal action is if a hotel was using their trademarked logo or advertising in a way intentionally meant to mislead people.

I have no doubt that if Ramsay had not forcibly changed the name, Sandy would have been sent a Cease and Desist letter by The Four Seasons' lawyers the day after the episode aired, followed within weeks by a money-draining lawsuit.

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