Sometimes one of the most difficult aspects of being a tourist in a legal marijuana state is tracking down a certain standard of lodging that also allows its patrons to smoke weed. All of the major hotel chains strictly prohibit the consumption of smokable cannabis. I mean, sure, all of us have done it. From the Holiday Inn to the Hilton Double Tree, toker travelers have been rolling up towels, cracking windows and exhaling through the exhaust fan in the bathroom to secretly get stoned in these places for years. But there is always a chance the maid will catch a whiff of weed come morning and you’ll end up getting charged hundreds of dollars extra for cleaning fees. You can’t trust that he or she won’t rat you out, and getting raked over the coals by the hospitality industry is certainly no way to end a vacation. So it is refreshing anytime cannabis-friendly accommodations open up shop in the dead lands of prohibition.
We are seeing more of these types of properties emerge in states that have legalized marijuana for recreational and medical use. Some of the nicer vacation rentals to come on to the scene as of late are called 420 Suites. This operation, which touts itself as the “The #1 Source for 420-Friendly Vacation Rentals, Nationwide,” recently opened hundreds of short-term lodging options in Boston, Massachusetts, and it has plans to bring others to Denver, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Chicago and New York, according to its website.
These rooms are not what someone might imagine for a property dedicated to people who prefer to stay baked. There are no black lights, Pink Floyd posters or a collection of used stoner DVDs anywhere to be found. This apartment complex is modern, hip and equipped with first-rate amenities, including a full kitchen, that gives any four or five-star hotel a run for its money. Guests of 420 Suites are given with a variety of cannabis gifts upon check-in, and even provided with chauffeured transportation to local pot dispensaries. Some might say this is high hospitality at its finest.
“We constantly need to come up with fresh ideas to stay innovative against some of the very large providers we compete against,” Patrick Flynn, the chief executive of 420 Suites, told The Boston Globe. “This is a way for us to get into a niche marketplace and also help people that are looking for the medical benefits that come from cannabis — disassociate the stigma a bit and make the process less intimidating.”
While the concept behind 420 Suites is a novel and necessary development in the midst of a newly legal climate, travelers eager to touch down in Boston anytime soon might find the experience a bit bland. Although recreational marijuana is fully legal across the state, Massachusetts officials still have not managed to roll out a recreational pot market. The only retail dispensaries available right now are those catering to the medical marijuana crowd. And patients must be registered with the state before they can ever step foot inside. But recreational marijuana licenses are starting to trickle in. Some of them could open in the next coming weeks, but the outcome for Boston remains uncertain. This means adults 21 and older who come to the area hoping to purchase weed in the same way as they did on their last vacation in Denver are going to have a tougher time finding a hook-up. But cannabis is legal to grow and give away, so it would only take some poking around in the right places to procure bud.
But there is another major snag to consider before booking a trip. It is important for prospective pot smoking renters to make sure they get a room that actually allows smoking. Although there are rentals available in East Boston that allow guests to toke up without repercussions, most of the units available through 420 Suites are smoke-free. “Massachusetts State Law does not allow smoking in any of the apartment buildings,” the website reads. However, the company says it does provide guests with “ information and suggestions for enjoying your experience during your stay.”
TELL US, are you interested in booking 420-friendly lodging?