Hotel Keepsakes – 5 Original “Do Not Disturb” Signs

Hotel Keepsakes – 5 Original “Do Not Disturb” Signs

It’s hard to resist leaving a hotel room without pocketing a pen or helping yourself to those little bottles of shampoo and shower gel in the bathroom – little keepsakes, souvenirs as well as useful at home. Do not disturb signs don’t normally fall into this category. Our guest writer has gathered quite a collection of these signs from hotels all over the world – over 400 different ones. In our blog she showed us five of the most interesting examples and the stories behind them.

Lift up mine eyes, Six Senses hotel, Yao Noi

This marker doesn’t show the regular “Do Not Disturb” and “Please Clean My Room” messages. All you get is one side showing eyes wide open, the other side, eyes tight shut. Eyes tight shut means that the occupant of the room is catching up on their beauty sleep, wide open means you can knock and enter.

Even the doorhanger itself is made of real wood. Because of the number of trees in the hotel, they have a strict policy – the furniture and décor are made only from the wood of fallen, not cut, trees.

Six Senses hotel, Yao Noi. A double room costs from US$656 per night.

Don’t let the cat out of the bag, The Slate Hotel, Phuket

DND is the abbreviation for Do Not Disturb and this is what is written on the little bags of sand taken from the hotel’s beach which hang on every door. The Slate Hotel has been totally rebuilt after the tsunami which hit Phuket in 2004. The wave destroyed most of the hotels on the waterfront, including The Slate.

The owners of the hotel did not wait around, the got straight on with rebuilding the hotel from scratch. The interior design is by an Australian architect who came up with such small details as the DND sandbags and other unexpected touches such as the black furniture.

The Slate Hotel, Phuket. A double room costs from US$213 per night.

A clean sweep, Six Senses hotel, Koh Samui

You know what to expect in the Sixth Sense group of hotels, but in the property on Koh Samui you won’t find any conventional door hangers, but little brushes. If the guest wants their room or villa to be cleaned they hang the little brush on the outside door handle.

If there is nothing on the door handle the staff know that the guest is not to be disturbed. There’s also a bell by every door – if the guest doesn’t answer then no-one will enter the room. Next, the staff will call the phone in the room and if no-one answers, only then will they go in.

Six Senses hotel, Koh Samui. A double room costs from US$508 per night.

A new broom, Radisson Royal hotel, Moscow

The idea of this pair of little brushes – one green (make up my room) and one red (do not disturb) came from the Radisson Royal hotel in Moscow.

In this part of the world, brushes were traditionally associated with well-to-do households. 200 years ago, the rich would call their servants by ringing a bell using a brush. Butlers and maids would come running at this signal. The designers of the hotel rethought the idea and gave it a new lease of life.

Radisson Royal hotel, Moscow. A double room costs from US$246 per night.

Just in case, 25 Hours Hotel at Museum Quarter, Vienna

In this Viennese hotel, instead of a couple of doorhangers you get a whole book of amusing inscriptions. Just choose one of them which appeals to you at the time and hang it on the door.

The red pages contain inscriptions explaining why you don’t want to be disturbed – “Still naked”, “Something it’s better not to know”, “Crime scene. Move along” – and the green ones give an idea as to why the room needs attention – “What can I say? I’m messy”, “Long live housekeeping”.

25 Hours Hotel at Museum Quarter, Vienna. A double room costs from US$151 per night.


You could even use these at home, maybe on the bathroom or bedroom door, but some are for decorative purposes only. Don’t hesitate to ask at reception about a particular favourite you come across. Often they will let you have one for a nominal charge – if you’re lucky, maybe even for free…especially if you show real enthusiasm about how you’ve never seen anything like it before….

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