hotel room

One of the biggest difficulties for a European tourist in organizing a trip to America is without a doubt the choice of the hotel room, because the measures of the beds are different than those we are used to. Depending on how many people participate in the trip, and the type of relationship that binds them, the choice of the bed can become a problem, as the method for cataloging the beds inside the European hotel rooms is very different from the American one.

Generally, especially in larger cities, the size of the beds is much larger than the European ones, even if the square footage of the standard room is smaller. The bed is much higher and usually the mattress is much softer, so much that the feeling, favored by the use of many pillows and feather quilts, is to sink into a soft cloud.

Two Queen Beds
Two Queen Beds

But apart from these general lines, the problem starts when you try to book a room. We often find ourselves booking a double room, meaning two separate beds for two people, while in reality we are facing a double bed, which does not translate into a “double” room, but indicates the type of French bed. If you want to book a room with two separate beds, ask for a queen: expect to find two single beds or sometimes even a single bed and a French bed. The double / double terminology is used to indicate the room with two queen size beds.

Double Room
Double Room

The situation is similar if the goal of the search is a double bed: in this case there is no literal translation, so if you want a double bed you have to ask for a king, which in this case takes its name from the type of bed. Some hotels have both double (two queen beds) and king (double bed) rooms and may even have the same price; the choice will be up to you based on the type of relationship you have with your travel companion.

King Room
King Room

A little used term is that of queen to define the room with the French bed; which is nothing but another way to say double bed.

Generally speaking, in Italy, a triple is a room for three adults, then with three single beds, or a single and a double. In America the triple term corresponds to triples, of which there is often not much availability in American hotels; situation that can be remedied with a double king room, or with a twin (2 single beds) in which a sofa bed or a third bed is added. Often in this case it is not specified by the hotelier what type of bed it is, but it will be up to you to confirm that the extra-bed is adult sized.

There is also a super king bed which is larger than the double bed.

Rooms for four people, or quadruples, are called family rooms and are very rare. For connecting rooms, or two separate rooms in which an internal door allows access to the other without going outside, the correct term is interconnecting or connecting room. However, this implies that at the time of payment you will have to pay two rooms, not one.

Queen Bed
Queen Bed

Anything else instead concerns the suites or the nicest rooms of the hotel with the best view and some more service.

In modern hotels (Sheratons, Hiltons, Mariotts, etc.) and in the old-fashioned but recently refurbished hotels, the arrangement of the beds in the room is generally given by a double bed (king) or two double beds (queen).

Summing up then, we can say that the type of room takes its name from the type of bed that is placed inside, so it is always good to check the specifications:

  • BabyBed (crib): 70 cm X 130 cm;
  • Twin bed: 97.5 cm X 187.5 cm;
  • Double bed (Full): 135 cm X187.5 cm;
  • Queen bed: 150/160 cm X 200 cm;
  • King bed: 190 cm X 200 cm.

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Interior Designer, Operatrice del Turismo Culturale, Artista

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