How I almost got quarantined and a mistake upgrade at Westin Rome

Fever and Dubai do not mix well

Should I have been sent to the hospital?

Stayed October 2016

While writing this entry, I was thinking if I should split it into 2, but I decided I needed to reduce my backlog as much as possible.

From the St Regis, I moved to the nearby Westin which have much better online reviews.

The walk to the Westin wasn’t too bad even with luggage, and I was also eager to leave the small room at St Regis.

There, I had an amazing upgrade due to a special set of circumstances.

The hotel is easy to spot as the exterior looked really classic with the balconies and cupola as in the picture above.

Front Desk and Lobby
Staff were less eager as there were many more guests moving around and I was attended to by Mr Flaviano who took my card and processed an authorization of a fairly large amount.
With that, he showed me to my room and proudly said I had been upgraded to a Via Veneto Suite!

This was when my companion got concerned and asked Mr Flaviano to check on my booking.

I was asked to just rest in the suite while the check was being done and I was assured that the suite has been assigned to me and I shouldn’t worry at all.
The suite has a really big and impressive living room, decorated with paintings and opened up to a nice balcony with nice views of the city.
 The bedroom looked pretty normal with a nice chandelier. Perhaps I should just say less impressive when compared to the living room. Normal does seem to be an understatement.

The bathroom was more than fine and the bathtub came with Jacuzzi jets. That, I really liked.

I had trouble with the dual shower head which I never did figure out the proper usage.
On the table were some nibbles and a bottle of Martini as welcome gifts.

So what happened?First, I had booked a Junior Suite under a refundable rate (which I advise to do when booking in advance) and had changed the rate and room type subsequently.

My changes were acknowledged by the SPG system, however, I think the hotel booking was not updated.

That explains the large pre-authorization amount (I remember it was 1500 Euros) and I do think the upgrade could have been a mistake. Of course I can be wrong. Perhaps the hotel is really that great to elite members!

With the issue resolved (without a gigantic hole in my pocket), I did my usual exploration of the hotel.

I made my way to the lower lobby which leads to the meeting rooms, the business center and the gym.

Meeting Rooms

Breakfast the next morning was solid with a nice range and good quality in a opulent restaurant.
Not as grand as the St Regis surely, but it is only a meal…

However, it was also much more crowded and I had to wait for some time before being seated.

I took a walk around the lobby extension before checking out which was very efficient.

I returned the bottle of Martini to the front desk as I was already very surprised by the upgrade and that I do not drink alcohol either.

Sadly, I did not manage to bid farewell to Mr Flaviano and thank him for his help.

After that extraordinarily upgraded stay, it was time to home and my flight home was via Dubai.
The transit time was several hours and, after some research, I figured I could go see the famous Burj Khalifa!
The metro system was easy to use and I had a short but great time in Dubai!
Unfortunately, I started feeling unwell at this point.
A sore throat, chills, body aches and lethargy hinted at a possible fever.
Luckily, I managed to board my flight home to Singapore!
During the flight, I felt worse as time went by and I really wanted to go home as soon as possible for a good rest.
While I was glad to be in Business class for a better rest, I was also disappointed that I couldn’t really enjoy the experience.
I took comfort in the fact that I didn’t fall ill during the trip, but only at the very end.
The flight landed safely and I proceeded to disembark. 
Unfortunately, this wasn’t the end of my woes.

On reaching the gate, I was picked up by the temperature scanner for having a high reading.The airport staff stopped me and motioned me to the side.Oh Dear!

I was questioned on several things, including how long I was and what I did in Dubai, and if I came into contact with camels. I gathered there were concerns of MERS from the Middle East.

My temperature reading was less than 38.0 Celsius, so I was simply told to go to the hospital if I got worse by the protocol. 

 I was elated at that, because who wants to end a holiday with a visit to the hospital?

Happy and Healthy travels! (To myself as well!)

Fred Ee
Dr Frederick Ee is a medical doctor, author, blogger and traveler. He discovered his passion for travel on his first long-haul trip to New York City in 2012. His quest for premium travel experiences started on that very same flight as he endured a smelly foot beside him from the passenger behind him for the 24 hours of flight from Singapore to New York. He blogs at, focusing on hotel experiences. His most memorable moment of travel was to participate in the resuscitation of a collapsed patient during a long flight to Paris. Feel free to add him on Facebook with a message and his Instagram at @drfrederickee. He would like to thank MileLion for having him as a guest writer and hope readers would enjoy his writings and musings.

Similar Articles


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Congrats on getting the upgrade! I was there with my family in Oct 2016 (booked a regular room) as SPG Platinum. The first night was full house for suites hence I had to settle for no upgrade (and was assigned a courtyard-facing room of the original category booked). On the second night, I tried my luck as suites became available for booking. The front desk agent checked with the manager who declined the upgrade.



Featured Deals


Follow us