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From Rock'n'roll Riots To Criminal Scandals...Hotels That Will Go Down in History

LONDON, U.K. – 02 November, 2010 – TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site*, today releases its list of the top ten infamous hotels, according to TripAdvisor editors and the site’s Popularity Index. ‘’Most hotels would prefer to be known for their quality of service or amazing facilities, but sometimes their success and reputation stems from something completely out of their hands,' says Emma O’Boyle, TripAdvisor spokesperson.

With arguably one of the world’s most infamous hotels, The Watergate Hotel in Washington, currently closed for renovation, it has been left to these 10 hotels to lead the way:

1. Adlon Kempinski Hotel, Berlin, Germany
Adlon Kempinski Berlin Hotel enjoys a prestigious location in central Berlin adjacent to the famous Brandenburg Gate. The hotel gained notoriety in November 2003 when pop legend Michael Jackson infamously dangled one of his children over the balcony to the screaming crowds below. The hotel still attracts many celebrities, politicians and even royalty (the Queen and the Prince of Wales have stayed).

2. The Mark Hotel, NYC, New York
The Mark Hotel is known for Johnny Depp’s infamous destruction of a $1,200 suite. The destruction took place on the morning of September 13th 1994 when Depp and his then girlfriend, supermodel Kate Moss, had an argument and promptly trashed the hotel room. Depp was taken in handcuffs to the 19th Precinct and told to pay the hotel nearly $10,000 in damages. After the event, The Mark’s owner thanked Depp’s publicist for all the free publicity.

3. Mercer Hotel, NYC, New York
The Mercer became infamous after an incident in 2005 involving Russell Crowe, a mobile phone and an unfortunate waiter. The Gladiator star became annoyed after he couldn’t call home to Australia and got so frustrated he threw his mobile at one of the hotel employees. He was arrested early the next morning, given a $5000 bail order and charged with second-degree assault.

4. Sunset Tower Hotel

Located on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood, California, the Sunset Tower Hotel opened its doors in 1931 and has been a favourite haunt for celebrities ever since. Frank Sinatra, Howard Hughes and John Wayne all lived in the hotel’s penthouse at different times. John Wayne reportedly brought a cow up to the penthouse apartment, explaining to his guests that if they wanted cream with their coffees they wouldn’t get it much fresher than this!

As one TripAdvisor traveller said: “A whole string of celebrities have stayed in this hotel – we just had to visit.”

5. Hotel Ritz, Paris, France
It was to be the venue for Princess Diana and boyfriend Dodi Al-Fayed’s final evening. They dined in style at the majestic 5-Star Ritz Hotel in Paris, just hours before a tragic car accident claimed their lives. The hotel boasts a magnificent selection of prestigious rooms and suites which are tastefully decorated in classical French style.

According to one TripAdvisor traveller: “The hotel itself is great, with stunning views. However, there are many tourists because of the Diana connection.”

6. Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth, Montreal

The Fairmont is infamous for being the location where Beatle John Lennon and Yoko Ono had their ‘Bed-in for Peace’ in 1969, and where the song ‘Give Peace a Chance’ was recorded. The one bedroom Executive suite features memorabilia composed of press articles, framed gold records and pictures of the famous couple.      Fairmont_The_Queen_Elizabeth-Montreal_Quebec.html

7. Chateau Marmont Hotel, Los Angeles       

The Chateau Marmont has served as the backdrop for a number of infamous events in the lives of celebrated rock stars and actors. Led Zeppelin band members rode their motorcycles through the lobby to cheering guests. Jim Morrison used what he called “the eighth of my nine lives” after he hurt his back dangling from a drain pipe. Britney Spears was reportedly banned from the hotel for appalling table manners in 2007 and the popular Eagles song ‘Hotel California’ is thought to be written about the hotel.  

According to one TripAdvisor Traveller: “If you want to experience what it is like mingling with the stars then stay here - we had a fantastic time.”    Los_Angeles_California.html

8. Chelsea Hotel, NYC, New York
This hotel has a colourful history, both as the birth place of creative modern art and the home of bad behaviour. Bob Dylan composed songs while staying here and it is also known as the place where Dylan Thomas died of alcohol poisoning in 1953. Other famous guests include Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Leonard Cohen and Arthur C. Clarke, who wrote ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ while in residence.


According to one TripAdvisor traveller: “The Chelsea Hotel is unlike any other - decadent, delightful and of course, infamous... It is as social as you want it to be or as quiet as you need.”  

9. Palace Station Casino Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
The O. J. Simpson robbery case arose in 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada. A group of men led by Simpson entered a room in the Palace Station Hotel and took various objects of sporting memorabilia. Simpson was arrested soon after and held without bail. Simpson denied the allegation that he or anyone else was carrying weapons; however in 2008 he was found guilty of all charges and sentenced to 33 years in prison.

10. Hilton Washington, Washington D.C.
Only 69 days into the presidency of Ronald Reagan there was an attempt on his life by John Hinckley Jr. at the Hilton Hotel in Washington D.C. The President was shot and wounded along with three others, and he suffered a punctured lung but swift medical attention meant that he recovered quickly. More recently, the events of March 1981 have been portrayed in the 2001 film ‘The Day Reagan was shot’.



For further information please contact:

Laurel Greatrix, TripAdvisor

020 3320 2150/