Thursday, September 23, 2010

Mario's Motor Inn

We enjoy reading about the "dark side" of motelling from time to time. Thankfully, there are few examples dominciled in New Zealand.

From the early days, motels in America were associated with drugs, desperadoes, and declining moral values. Today, this notoriety has faded somewhat, however there are still some fine examples of "No Tell motels" to keep the legend alive. 

On our journey around the interweb we stumbled upon Mario's Motor Inn that is an excellent example of a motel that has found a specialist niche market over on the dark side.

Mario's Motor Inn is a inconspicuous 14-room motel located on the outskirts of town in Massachusetts and has been used as a backdrop for numerous B grade movies. The 1950s motel reeks of character and current owner, Brenda D'Agostino doesn't mind that her motel is regularly sought after as a characteristically dark "No Tell Motel" by film makers.

D'Agostino purchased the motel with her husband in 1984. Tragedy struck 18-months later when her husband was was killed in a drunken-driving crash. D'Agostino battled on alone over the years and refurbished the motel rooms to her own unique kitsch style.

Improvements included heart-shaped "luv-tubs" with foaming jet action, red towels and silver glitter wallpaper of naked women adorned the bathroom walls. The heart theme continued with heart shaped mirrors and heart shaped trash baskets for good measure. Glittery ceilings were added and strategically placed mirrors were placed above the circular beds that were dressed with red blankets and zebra striped comforters. The red shag-pile carpets completed the perfect setting for a 1970s porn movie scene.

D'Agostino claimed that her changes set the motel apart from other motels and her rooms are booked solid every weekend.

It is frustrating that there are few photos available on the interweb and characteristically the motel does not have a website. In this digital age we are grateful that folk are more that willing to paint a vivid picture with their experiences and we were lucky to find the following reviews on Mario's Motor Inn:  
"If you're into the trashy, the funny and the cheezy, this is the place to go. $95 for the night and signs posted everywhere (including a nailed down plaque on the wall in each room) stating that two persons only are allowed to be in the room. If more than that are found, you will be thrown out with no refund!

As a followup to a Kowloon's visit and in the mood for tempting fate, myself and four other girlfriends had a birthday party in the "Luv- tub" complete with cupcakes, strawberries, pink Champagne and episodes of Beavis and Butthead.

The place was definitely not a place you would want your mother to find you in, but it was a novelty. Glittery ceilings, heart shaped mirrors, heart shaped trash basket, red towels, red blankets, red shag carpets.

I'm sure at some point, someone has had to have shot a sleazy porn in this place. But great for laughs."

I  don't know whether I want to give this place 1 star or 5 stars. I can't tell if it deserves 5 stars for irony or 1 star for honesty.

I am -so- ashamed to be reviewing this place, let alone the first, let alone the only one. We've all seen their classy hot tub loving sign while driving down Route 1, averting our eyes from the potential pay by the hour sleaze that must reside within.

WELL, this jackass went there once (with her husband, which lessens the skeeze factor I think. I hope, especially it's not one of those wacky, "Kids, let me tell you how I met your dad" stories that will entertain and shame the family for generations to come). We were lured by the hot-tubs. This was also years ago, before we discovered nicer B and Bs that also had hot tubs WITHOUT silver glitter wallpaper of naked women on the bathroom walls.

They have heart shaped hot tubs in the bedrooms, which is good because as far as I could tell because there were no other heat sources to be found, though management did bring us a space heater so we didn't die.

I mean....Seriously, I don't know what to say about this place. They have heart shaped hot tubs! They have worn thin zebra striped comforters on  the beds I wouldn't touch without either wearing a hazmat suit or having a few doses of penicillin, they have televisions that, as far as I could tell, only showed barely unscrambled it kind of transports you back to jr high when you'd flip the channels really quickly to see if you could catch a glimpse of what was happening on one of the "Adult" cable channels that only came on after 10pm. Apparently some rooms are even classier and include accommodations like mirrors on the ceiling and circular waterbeds.

So's a motor inn on the side of Rte.1 that has heart shaped hot tubs and not much else. It's sketchy, it's sleazy, and I don't think I'd ever go back, but it was really funny at the time. FUNNY, -not- sexy, not at all.

Oh, for the curious, it is -NOT- pay by the hour.
And it's good news for those of you wanting to have a challenging business project - we see that the motel is for sale! 
"Motel On Route 1 Southbound. Rooms Individually Themed, Some With Heart-Shaped Tubs. Newer Roof And Updated Electrical Systems. Seller Will Entertain Offers Between $375,000 And $398,876!"  

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