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A hotel is an establishment that provides paid lodging on a short-term basis. The provision of basic accommodation, in times past, consisting only of a room with a bed, a cupboard, a small table and a washstand has largely been replaced by rooms with modern facilities, including en-suite bathrooms and air conditioning or climate control. Additional common features found in hotel rooms are a telephone, an alarm clock, a television, a safe, a mini-bar with snack foods and drinks, and facilities for making tea and coffee. Luxury features include bathrobes and slippers, a pillow menu, twin-sink vanities, and jacuzzi bathtubs. Larger hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a restaurant, swimming pool, fitness center, business center, childcare, conference facilities and social function services.
Hotel rooms are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room.
Some hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. In the United Kingdom, a hotel is required by law to serve food and drinks to all guests within certain stated hours. In Japan, capsule hotels provide a minimized amount of room space and shared facilities.
A number of public figures have notably chosen to take up semi-permanent or permanent residence in hotels.
Actor Richard Harris lived at the Savoy Hotel while in London. Hotel archivist Susan Scott recounts an anecdote that when he was being taken out of the building on a stretcher shortly before his death he raised his hand and told the diners "it was the food."
Inventor Nikola Tesla lived the last 10 years of his life at the New Yorker Hotel until 1943 when he died in the hotel room.
Millionaire Howard Hughes lived his last few years in a Las Vegas hotel.
Larry Fine (of the Three Stooges) and his family lived in hotels, due to his extravagant spending habits and his wife''s dislike for housekeeping. They first lived in the President Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey, where his daughter Phyllis was raised, then the Knickerbocker Hotel in Hollywood. Not until the late 1940s did Larry buy a home in the Los Feliz area of Los Angeles, California.
American actress Elaine Stritch lived in the Savoy Hotel in London for over a decade.
Fashion designer Coco Chanel lived in the Hotel Ritz Paris on and off for more than 30 years.
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