Why do hotels put chocolates on your pillow?

I enjoyed Cecil’s column on bibles in hotel rooms, but I have not heard an explanation for the chocolates. When did this get started, and why? It seems like a strange practice to me. If they want guests to have some chocolates, why not leave them on the table where they won’t accidentally get slept on or worse.

And why do you need to eat chocolate in the bed, anyway? Is it for what I think it is?

Because it’s classier than a little tiny tube of Astroglide?

I don’t know what you think it’s for, but you don’t have to eat it in bed. Presumably anyone who’s not riproaring drunk or otherwise brain dead will see the chocolate on pillow and move it before getting into bed.

The “why” isn’t that they want you to have chocolates, it that they want to instill an impression of taking really good care of you, even to the point of providing an unnecessary luxury. It’s a psychological thing. They want guests to feel a little bit pampered and think happy thoughts.

Many years ago, I worked with a woman who had previously worked at a Holiday Inn, and she said they left mints on pillows “because our customers mean a mint to us”.


It’s because the bed is the most important thing in the room and it’s why anyone would pay for the room. You don’t pay for a hotel room to sit at a desk or table.

This is purely supposition, but I think it’s likely that the process was:

  1. A hotelier got a deal on small chocolates (maybe as part of a deal to advertise the chocolate).
  2. The hotelier decided to put it someplace conspicuous - on the person’s pillow - either since people like chocolate or to help advertise the chocolate.
  3. The customers liked this particular juxtaposition.
  4. The customers talked about it and other hoteliers picked it up too.

I don’t think there’s anything mystical nor sexual about it.

I don’t like there being bibles in hotels rooms! People can bring their own if they want to read it ! People should be asked if they want a bible in their room .

Moderator Note

This is GQ. This does not answer the questions in the OP.

General Questions Moderator

I agree . . . unless the bible’s made of chocolate. :slight_smile:

How is it hurting you?

You’d hate staying at a Marriott. They also put the Book of Mormon in their rooms, because the Marriott family is Mormon. :o

Those who have one of their own to bring are not the ones who are in need of it that night. At least I’m assuming that’s what the Gideons had in mind.

Me, I always take it out and flip through it to look for money. You’d be surprised how much you can find. If I don’t find any money I’ll usually leave a buck. (Hey, I’m cheap.) After you grab the money from the bible, be sure to take out the bottom drawers of the furnishings and look underneath. Often times there are some rather colorful magazines to be had.

As for the chocolates and making guests feel pampered, I still don’t buy it. A freshly cut flower would do the trick. A little bottle of Crown Royal perhaps. Tons of little goodies they could offer that are actually useful. But no, it’s always unhealthy chocolates.

Cool History Facts: Why Hotels Put a Chocolate On Your Pillow - (Uncle John is a regular SD reader himself!)

As Written By The Master …

There really isn’t anything particularly unhealthy with the chocolate (for most people). At least, not in the amount they give you. Sure, eating a half pound of chocolate isn’t the best thing for your health, but a quarter ounce of chocolate isn’t going to harm you. In fact, most hotels that do this use dark chocolate, which is high in anti-oxidants. I’m sure one could find some research to indicate a small amount of dark chocolate daily has healthful benefits.

And chocolates are easily stored in a maid’s cart in a box while a bunch of flowers are bulky and don’t fit well on a cart. A hotel giving away alcohol even in the slightest amount doesn’t have a good family oriented feeling.

Why is there money in there?? I had no idea this was going on. What have I been missing?

Left by a previous occupant… “If you’re reading this bible, you need this money more than I do” etc. Or someone was using the bible as a safe storage place and forgot about it. Snopes has a page on it.

Even if the original story wasn’t true, once the story is out there, well it can just turn into a little game I guess. It’s fun to leave a WheresGeorge bill in there and keep tabs on where it goes after that.

I don’t know any maids that I can ask, but I’d sure like to know if they routinely check the books. That was also mentioned on the Snopes page. All I know is I’d much rather have a crisp bill than a dry piece of chocolate.

I don’t mind. I usually keep them; I have a small collection. Even some specimens of the Book of Mormon.

Why offer something useful? Being pampered isn’t about having something useful, it’s about having something completely frivolous and unnecessary. I can’t think of anything better than chocolate. The luxury to expense ratio is incredibly high. A single nice chocolate is viewed as a luxury but it probably costs the hotel a few cents. Chocolate is one of those things where less is more. If you were given a whole block of chocolate it wouldn’t have the same effect.

I’m waiting with bated breath - what do you think it is for?

I like chocolate.

I hate murdered flowers.