7 Unique Things Your Family Can Borrow From Hotels

Forgot your pet goldfish? There's a loaner for that.

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Photo By: Viceroy Snowmass

Photo By: The Jefferson

Photo By: Montage Laguna Beach

Photo By: Aloft and Element Austin Downtown

Photo By: Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants

Photo By: Halycon Hotel, Cherry Creek

A Dog for a Day

Your furry friends are welcome at the Viceroy Snowmass (see the website for details). But if Fido stayed home, you can still romp or snuggle with a canine companion. This luxury ski resort and hotel near Aspen will arrange for you to borrow a dog (you can pick your favorite) from the Aspen Animal Shelter. Throw snowballs for your new pal, snap on a leash and show him the town or take him back to your room and order doggie treats and a water bowl from room service.

Book It

Tales of mystery, romance, and adventure: you'll find them all in the digital library at The St. Regis in New York. For over a century, hardcover books collected by John Jacob Astor IV, founder of the Astor hotel chain, have been housed on the second floor. Now the hotel has added a curated list of e-books, loaded onto leather-bound Kindles, for guests to read. While you're there, ask to see Astor's original, Gilded Era hardcovers, beautifully preserved behind glass.

Tie One On

Oh, no. You left your best black tie at home, and you're due at a reception for the Prince of Wales in an hour. No problem, if you’re staying at The Jefferson in Washington, D.C., where you can borrow a one-of-a-kind bow tie from Tie the Knot. The plume on the tie is a nod to the writing instrument used by our third president, Thomas Jefferson. Introduced in 2014 as amenities for LGBT weddings, the loaner ties are now available for any guest, along with basic black belts. So go on. Make a fashion statement at that reception.

Strike A Chord

There’s something about gathering with friends around a roaring fire that calls for music ("Kumbaya," anyone?). Play your own tunes when you borrow a Taylor Koa GS Mini Guitar from Montage Laguna Beach Hotel. The hotel director, Rick Riess, says he wants guests who play music, and those who love it, to experience the culture of Laguna Beach and practice their music without having to transport their own instruments. On Fridays and Saturdays, the hotel brings in local, professional musicians for performances on the Ocean Lawn.

Get The Boot(s)

You should look the part when you stay at the Element Austin Downtown in Texas. Since you'll be within walking distance of the Sixth Street Entertainment District, the Austin Convention Center and other popular venues, borrow some snazzy kicks from Allens, a Western wear shop that partners with the hotel. Wear a complimentary pair of cowboy boots during your stay. If you like them, you can bet your boots the hotel will schedule a private fitting for you with one of Allens' experts.

And They Call It Guppy Love

If you're traveling, and the kids are sad because they're leaving all their pet hamsters behind, call a boutique Kimpton Monaco Hotel. There are currently 9 properties (in Seattle, Denver, Salt Lake City, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Pittsburg, Portland, Chicago and Baltimore) that will loan you a complimentary, in-room goldfish. The staff will even feed and care for Nemo daily. If you forget to call ahead, and there are no finny friends available when you arrive, the hotel may surprise you with goldfish crackers or a plush goldfish instead.

Gear Up and Go

What’s your sport? Halcyon at Cherry Creek, in Colorado, has you covered with loaners from the hotel's Gear Garage. Tour the town on a Piaggo Vespa scooter, or cruise on a New Belgium signature bike. Maybe you’d rather hop on a Kota longboard or hamboard (a longboard skateboard that lets you “surf” on wheels). Borrow an adventure kit with a backpack, GoPro, binoculars, Swiss army knife and bottled water, or snap black and white photos with a Leica camera (a nearby photo shop will develop your film). If you'd rather stay in, check out a board game like Clue or Scrabble, or spin some of the hotel's oh-so-cool vinyl records.