Room with a Zoo

More rooms with a zoo

Last summer I flew cross-country to escort retired guide-dog Joplin (below) from Montreal to her new family in Seattle.  The airline misplaced the dog carrier and the dog only understood French, but with the help of about a dozen United Airlines employees at Montreal Airport, Joplin made her flight and arrived “home” safely.

joplinNow, after holding the bone just out of reach for months now, the folks at Pet Airways announced they’re accepting reservations from folks who want to book “seats” for their pets on the animals-only airline.  I’m not sure if Joplin is up for another trip, but if you  send your pet on an adventure on this new pet airline let me know.

In the meantime, if you must fly somewhere without your pet, you may want to choose a hotel that will loan you a pet during your stay or let you hang out with an on-site pet.  More than two-dozen properties that offer that option are included in my Room with a Zoo story that officially posted on this week.

Here are just two of the more than two dozen places included.

kimpton-fishAll Kimpton Monaco hotels offer the “Guppy Love” program.  Guests can request a loaner goldfish (more entertaining than a guppy?) during their stay.  I still have fond memories of perky Panchita, the fish assigned to my room during a stay at the Monaco hotel in Portland, Oregon.

billy-the-sealAt the Bahai Resort Hotel in San Diego, rehabilitated seals like Billy (above) spend their days in their own on-site pool.  They’re entertaining, but quieter than 600-pound male seal lion who lived at the hotel in the 1970’s and enjoyed “singing” along with the band in the bar.

For more hotels with resident animals, please see my Room with a Zoo story on If you know of other hotels with cool, cute on-site animals, please let me know!

Room with a zoo: hotels that invite or loan pets

Sneak preview:

If you can’t take Spot or Puff along with you on your next trip out of town, don’t fret.  In my “Room with a Zoo” story on, you’ll find plenty of hotels that have on-site pets that can entertain, keep you company, or join you on a walk.

Some examples:


Koko has been living at the Southern Palms Beach Club in Barbados for at least 45 years.


Iris and Thistle, two unusual white burros, visit with guests at the Hidden Meadow Ranch in Arizona’s White Mountains.


And giraffe are regular visitors at Giraffe Manor in Nairobi.

For lots more “Room with a Zoo” ideas, see the full slide-show at

Feel free to send along photos and tips on other hotels with cool animals on-site.