Hotels need to install and maintain properly designed and manufactured lavatory equipment if they are serious about saving water.

When my wife and I travel for pleasure, we prefer to stay at small boutique hotels. That is, of course, unless we’ve racked up so many points in the big hotel chains’ loyalty programs from our business travel that we can get a room for free.

While the big chains generally offer bland consistency from room to room and even from city to city, the charm of a boutique hotel is quite different. The wallpaper or floor covering in one room might well be different from another room on the same floor.

And, then we get to the plumbing. We’ve seen mismatched faucet handles on the same sink that go in different directions to turn the water on and off.

Showers are always an adventure because we never know what we’re going to experience when we turn, push in or pull out the shower valve. On a vacation to Northern California in early September, we stayed at a favorite bed-and-breakfast where the water temperature fluctuated from very warm to bracing, and back again, during our respective showers.

A few nights later, we revisited a boutique hotel on Nob Hill in San Francisco and experienced a showerhead manufactured prior to the advent of low-flow regulations. It turned out to be a guilty pleasure in these green-conscious times...

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