“Set to be one of the must-see happenings of this year’s Fringe, The Hotel is the brainchild of the comedian Mark Watson, a perennial over-achiever at Edinburgh who has previously performed 24-hour shows and written a novel over the course of his run in the city. Now, he’s brought together some of the finest young talents around to take part in a part-promenade theatre, part-art installation, part-improvisation show, set in a fictional hotel.
Best of all are the fine and lightly insane touches of Becs Andrews’ detailed design, from the pictures of guests “yet to visit” on the walls (Helen Mirren, JFK…) to a stunning lost property cubbyhole. Don’t be afraid to open all the doors and poke around in every cupboard; you’re a guest, after all.
Inside is a hospitality disaster far outstripping anything Basil Fawlty might have imagined: a business centre where the computers are all hard-wired to show only porn; a restaurant that serves cornflakes for lunch and cream crackers for dinner; and a massage room which also serves as a general thoroughfare.
The audience is invited to wander around the floors at will, perhaps participating in a little zen meditation with the resident “guru” in the chill-out room or stumbling across a sweat-soaked job interview in the boardroom.” Alice Jones