1. Hotel Adlon Kempinski, Berlin, Germany – Average Nightly Rate: $313 – $692
Hotel Adlon Kempinski 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 here.) “One of the finest hotels we’ve experienced,” noted one TripAdvisor traveler.
2. The Mark, New York City, New York – Average Nightly Rate: $543 – $995
Johnny Depp’s destruction of a $1,200 suite is cited as a perfect example of how to trash a hotel room. The destruction took place on the morning of September 13, 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. A TripAdvisor traveler said, “The hotel is just beautiful – a great mix of art deco and modern design.”
3. The Mercer Hotel, New York City, New York – Average Nightly Rate: $410 – $560
The Mercer became infamous after an incident in 2005 involving Russell Crowe, a cell phone and an unfortunate member of staff. The Gladiator star became annoyed after he couldn’t call home to Australia, and got so frustrated that he threw his cell at one of the hotel employees. He was arrested early the next morning, given a $5,000 bail order and charged with second-degree assault. “Yet again, The Mercer is faultless,” added a TripAdvisor traveler.
4. Sunset Tower Hotel, West Hollywood, California – Average Nightly Rate: $251 – $352
Located on Sunset Boulevard, the Sunset Tower Hotel opened its doors in 1931 and has been a favorite 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 traveler said, “A whole string of celebrities have stayed in this hotel – we just had to visit.”
5. Hotel Ritz Paris, Paris, France – Average Nightly Rate: $1,677 – $2,730
This 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 traveler, “The hotel itself is great, with stunning views. However, there are many tourists because of the Diana connection.”
6. Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec – Average Nightly Rate: $135 – $308
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. A TripAdvisor traveler said, “It’s old world elegance.”
7. Chateau Marmont, Los Angeles, California – Average Nightly Rate: $480 – $520
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, and Jim Morrison used what he called “the eighth of my nine lives” here, after hurting his back while 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 traveler, “If you want to experience what it is like mingling with the stars, then stay here – we had a fantastic time.”
8. Chelsea Hotel, New York City, New York – Average Nightly Rate: $216 – $515
This hotel has a colorful history, both as the birth place of creative modern art and the home of bad behavior. 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 traveler, “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 Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada – Average Nightly Rate: $28 – $102
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. “Hostel price for hotel quality,” noted a TripAdvisor traveler.
10. Hilton Washington Embassy Row, Washington D.C., District of Columbia – Average Nightly Rate: $141 – $372
Just 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 suffered a punctured lung – but swift medical attention lead to a speedy recovery. More recently, the events of March 1981 have been portrayed in the 2001 film, “The Day Reagan was Shot.” A TripAdvisor traveler added, “It is currently my favorite DC hotel.”
“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,” said Karen Drake, senior director of communications for TripAdvisor.