A commercial establishment providing lodging, meals, and other guest services.
In general, to be called a hotel, an establishment must have a minimum of six letting bedrooms, at least three of which must have attached private bathroom facilities. Although hotels are classified into ‘Star’ categories (1-Star to 7-Star), there is no standard method of assigning these ratings, and compliance with customary requirements is voluntary. A US hotel with a certain rating, for example, is may look very different from a European or Asian hotel with the same rating, and would provide a different level of amenities, range of facilities, and quality of service.
Whereas hotel chains assure uniform standards throughout, non-chain hotels (even within the same country) may not agree on the same standards. In Germany, for example, only about 30 percent of the hotels choose to comply with the provisions of the rules established by the German Hotels & Restaurants association. Although both WTO and ISO have been trying to persuade hotels to agree on some minimum requirements as world-wide norms, the entire membership of the Paris-based International Hotel & Restaurant (IH&RA) opposes any such move.
According to IH&RA, to harmonize hotel classification based on a single grading (which is uniform across national boundaries) would be an undesirable and impossible task. As a rough guide:
The Official Hotel Guide (published in the US, and followed world wide) has its own classification scheme that ranks hotels in nine categories as (1) Moderate Tourist Class, (2) Tourist Class, (3) Superior Tourist Class, (4) Moderate First Class, (5) Limited Service First Class, (6) First Class, (7) Moderate Deluxe, (8) Deluxe, and (9) Superior Deluxe.
A bed and breakfast (typically shortened to B&B or BnB) is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and breakfast. Bed and breakfasts are often private family homes and typically have between four and eleven rooms, with six being the average. In addition, a B&B usually has the hosts living in the house.
Bed and breakfast is also used to describe the level of catering included in a hotel’s room prices, as opposed to room only, half-board or full-board.