A room for a midweek night starts at $695 and can soar up to
$4,500 for a suite, but this particular hotel on Central Park South
may have a problem commonly, if unfairly, associated with more
low-rent lodging - bedbugs. And it may also have a bigger
issue - grumbling workers.
A worker at the hotel, the Ritz-Carlton New York, said that a
guest in Room 1005 reported to the front desk on Sunday that she
had discovered a bedbug in her room. The guest then checked out,
but not before producing a specimen of the bug, a wingless
The worker, Rosanna Polanco, a room attendant, said she was
asked on Monday to service the room next to 1005 but was not told
about the bedbugs. She found out only when she encountered a worker
from Ecolab Inc., a company that supplies cleaning products and
pest elimination services.
"He was the one who told me: 'Be careful. There's a lot of
bedbugs in there,' " Ms. Polanco said, referring to Room 1005.
"Management didn't tell me. I found out myself."
As is usual in cases involving bedbugs in hotels, guests in
adjacent rooms and those above and below were moved to other rooms
or upgraded to suites. And on Wednesday, workers were given
training and shown a video on signs of bedbug infestation, like
blood on sheets.
Although bedbugs are sometimes associated with fleabag hotels,
they can thrive anywhere and are easily transported. There have
been reports of bedbugs in office buildings like the Empire State,
movie theaters and stores like Abercrombie & Fitch.
Ms. Polanco said she was worried about her family - in case she
had unknowingly picked up a bedbug on her clothing and carried it
home. "I haven't checked my house," she said. "I don't know how to
inspect my house."
The hotel has offered to send professionals to her home to check
for any infestation, though Ms. Polanco said no one had come as
Scott Geraghty, the hotel's general manager, confirmed that a
bedbug had been found in the room. "Bedbugs are inevitable," he
said. "They're brought in by guests and come in on luggage or
things of that nature." He said the problem had been
John Turchiano, a spokesman for the New York Hotel Trades
Council, which represents about 30,000 hotel workers, said on
Wednesday: "I'm told the hotel apologized for the delay in
notifying the members. I can also tell you there was bedbug
training this morning and afternoon for management and staff."