Hotels have strict classifications as mandated by the hospitality industry. Be it hotels in Bath’s city centre such as The Royal Hotel or any other hotel in the world, they are classified according to specific ratings. Perhaps the most commonly known rating system is the star rating (i.e. five-star, four-star) which indicates a hotel’s level of excellence in terms of overall service. But how does this rating work?
A Basic Definition
Star ratings are instituted to help consumers evaluate a hotel’s overall performance. This may include amenities, luxury, and the level of hospitality practiced by the staff. Star ratings are easy to understand. The more stars, the better the hotel. Take, for instance, a typical five-star hotel offers lavishly furnished and sizeable rooms, world-class restaurants and sophisticated décor. This drives costs, of course. So as the star rankings dip, the price goes with it.
These ratings sometimes confuse people, however. It’s because what may be classified as a five-star hotel in one place, for example, is a four-star or even three-star one in another. Unofficial, non-standard ratings are what pushed authorities like VisitBritain, the Automobile Association (AA), VisitScotland and VisitWales to come up with a standardised rating system. Official representatives visit each hotel annually to assess facilities and overall service, eventually coming up with an official star rating.
Star ratings also focus largely on specific aspects more than others, and this varies from one country to another. Hotels in the UK, for instance, are given star ratings which are based heavily on customer service. In France, ratings focus on rooms, amenities, and even lobbies. In Italy, hotel ratings emphasise cleanliness. The sheer amount of ruling variety makes it difficult to ascertain a global standard.
When looking at star ratings, it’s easy to understand how hotels are classified. Hotels with either one or two stars offer rather basic amenities, such as in-room television and phone, as well as regular housekeeping. Moving up to three and four stars often involves higher standards of cleanliness and service, larger rooms, in-house restaurants, and even gyms. Hotel star ratings are there to help guests assess choices before booking. Use them wisely and ask for clarifications whenever possible.