In Bed With blogger Rhiannon Taylor stays in luxury hotels for a living

Rhiannon Taylor is ensconced at new QT Melbourne when she chats with Traveller. It's not surprising to find her here: this 31-year-old Melbourne blogger stays in luxury hotels for a living, writing about them and taking photos of them. This "labour of love" project has resulted in blog In Bed With. Her hotel stays are followed by nearly 60,000 on Instagram.

What's great about staying in hotels?

For me it's the sexy element; it's about escaping the real world. I even remember when I was six years old and being super excited staying at a motel in Albury and Wodonga. My skin crawls now thinking about it. Also, staying somewhere that's clean. At home it's like: "I have to vacuum the floor! I have to wash the dishes!" At hotels I can just get into a clean bed and feel amazing.

How did the blog start?

I'm a lifestyle and interior photographer [Rhiannon has a Bachelor of Arts from RMIT], and write for loads of publications. I've been doing that for 12 years, longer than I'd care to admit. A year and a half ago I felt like I was doing the same thing over and over again and wanted a creative outlet. I'm always on the road, travelling for commercial work, and I stay in hotels all the time. I thought: people are blogging about fashion and food, why not talk about unique and interesting hotels? No one else was blogging about hotels, it's a unique concept, and in a short amount of time it took off.

When did hotels start inviting you to stay?

Within a couple of months. A lot of people invite me. But core of In Bed With is to try different, unique hotels. What I search for is something that's a unique experience. A shack on the beach in Mexico. It might not be luxury, but you eat tacos and drink Coronas all day. Or it could be really OTT, like a penthouse in New York. It's about finding something really unique. Most of them don't make the cut.

Who do you travel with?

Family, and I have a lot of friends that volunteer. I'm not short on travel assistants, that's for sure. I don't like travelling by myself. But there are good sides to that, too: clean sheets; you can raid the minibar and just watch TV and have no one judge you, that's quite great.

Advertisement
 

The lobby scene at @qtmelbourne.

A photo posted by In Bed With (@inbedwith.me) on

Do people connect up with you via social media?

In good and in bad ways social media has connected me with people all over the globe, people you normally you wouldn't even know. It's connected me with other creatives. I'm not the face of my blog; on Instagram I'm in maybe one in 30 photos, more really to show people that I am really there and not Googling images!

How do you take a good photo of a hotel room?

Coming from a photographic background I look at light, making sure it comes in nicely through the windows. I don't like overall shots of the whole room, I like shots showing the details - an interesting piece of art on the walls, or the furniture. A lot of the hotels I visit have great furniture – readers are very interested in great design. People like a very lifestyle approach, and they like shots of messy beds! For me, the most popular photo is the messy bed shot!

What do you hate most about hotels?

My cringe hate is hotels that use the same bathroom products, mainly it's because I stay in so many hotels and I see the same brands! I hate a bad breakfast, especially if it's included.

Is it okay to take the amenities?

Of course! I have a million bottles, it's shameful! I take the Nespresso capsules, too. I don't have a machine but my mum does. Every time I come home I have about 30 capsules: that's like a months worth of coffee! A few teas are really great, too.

What are some of your favourite places?

A place called Cocoa Island, in the Maldives (Read Traveller's own review of Cocoa Island here). It's amazing if you want a serene, bliss, off-grid experience on the beach. My all-time favourite is Capella Lodge, Lord Howe Island (Read Traveller's review). Most people don't know that Lord Howe exits, that's what makes it special. They are world heritage listed islands and only 400 people are allowed there at a time, so you have a real privilege of place. There's a lodge there, a small resort, it only has nine rooms, and the views are beautiful.

Any budget picks?

Sherwood Queenstown. It's $120 a night, so super cheap, It's very hipster. They grow all their products on site, and get really famous bands from all around the world to play. It's such a cool vibe, and it's customised: the blankets are made out of New Zealand wool and the walls are made out of cork.

Does the travel get tiring?

It does get exhausting; you travel a long way to get some content, basically just to show that there are these places that exist. I've brought on some contributors.

It's not sustainable for me to be a full time travel blogger. My career is as a photographer, that's how I make my money. The hotel project is a labour of love.

See more from Rhiannon at http://www.inbedwith.me

See also: Traveller's review: The new QT Melbourne

See also: The coolest hotels opening around the world in 2017

Comments