I have been hanging out in Duranie dorms or hotels filled with Duranies for years now. I have been in hotels as part of tours, as part of conventions and as part of meetups. All experiences have been so fun! Interestingly enough, my first experience in a hotel with other Duranies was, indeed, at the convention in 2004. I thought the hotel that was chosen was super cool with fun bathrobes, fascinating decor and the ability to have a fish in the room as your “pet”! Yet, when I think back to that convention and my room, I think about the Duranies “next door” who frequently came over to chat. I remember how we showed off our goodies after the vendor fair. I swear I got more and more excited seeing their reactions to my purchases! At that point and time, I knew that while the convention had “official” activities, the party was ongoing as we told stories, talked about the new album, listened to music together and more! This, of course, really made me happy as one of the biggest reasons for me attending was to meet and get to know other fans. The hotel setting certainly allowed that!
This experience gave me a real taste to what a big part of touring is for me and that is staying at the hotels with other fans. I wanted more of Duranie dorm life and I wanted it right then. Thus, when tour dates were announced in 2005, I was ready to book hotel rooms wherever others were going to be. Awesomely enough, my first show of that tour was in Chicago in March of 2005. The Duranie Dorm was nearby the venue and was quite the party! I swear that half of the hotel lived in the bar, which was right off the lobby! There were screams of excitement with every new Duranie who came in! We were so loud, in fact, that we were reminded that “there were sleeping rooms down there”. After the show, we partied hard. In fact, they ended up closing the bar early in order to get rid of us. Did the party end there? No way. We all went to someone’s room to continue the conversation and fun! Thus, if the convention got be interested in hotels like this, the Chicago Duranie Dorm of 2005 got me hooked!
The following year featured a meetup in Chicago again. Once again, the group all stayed in the same hotel. What did this mean for me? It meant ridiculously late nights and lots of talking and laughing! I remember, for example, Ms. Rhonda carrying a bottle of gin into a hotel room filled with Duranies and saying, “Gin brings the world together.” That night, I couldn’t agree more! Were these hotel room visits part of the meetup? Nope. Did they add to the experience? Of course! Heck, we were so silly that we had placed a Duran picture outside our door in order to show other fans that Duranies were there. Did that picture survive the weekend? Sure did. In fact, it featured some lip marks as a Duranie or two or ten kissed the picture while walking by! We couldn’t help but to laugh at that once we realized how much love that picture got!
2007 found us in New York City for the “Fan Show” or the show for DDM members. Again, the Duranie Dorm/Hotel was a nearby hotel. This hotel wasn’t the best that I have ever stayed at. In fact, I remember laughing at like 5 in the morning over the fact that the sheets didn’t really fit. I also remember the fact that it was attached to this diner or the diner was part of the hotel. It seemed like any day or night you could go to that diner and find other Duranie! While the show did not live up to expectations, I had a great time with other fans!!!
Perhaps, this is why we really wanted Duranie Dorms/Hotels for the summer tour. Thankfully, we were able to have one in Durham. These hotels with all the interactions between Duranies seem like small communities in which we might not know each other at first but allow such great moments while people do get to know each other. While there are a ton of things I am looking forward to with the convention, the hotel is one I’m looking forward to the most! There will definitely be an all night party in room 7609…