Monday 3 March 2008

Full-Bodied Stink with Hints of Grossness at Total Wine Raleigh Toilets

Total Wine & More - Raleigh Triangle
Triangle Plaza
6105 Capital Blvd
Raleigh, NC USA 27616

Where is it?

Proving that they must be for customers only, the toilets here are found near the exit, on the other side of the cashiers.

To get to them, you need to enter the store through the main entrance, go left, pass through an empty cashier line (or, if they are blocked, wait through a full one) and then take an immediate right, and go down a hallway composed solely of drywall. The bathrooms are down that hallway.

What's it like?

This mammoth wine and beverage warehouse (part of a chain throughout the southeast U.S.) on Raleigh's bustling Capital Boulevard offers a classy, comprehensive environment that wine, booze and beer lovers will find hard to hate. Aisles upon aisles of wine varietals, plenty of unique and commonly found spirits and a great beer selection (the only place I've been able to find the fine Latvian lager Luksus, believe it or not!) -- as beverage store selections go, this one is near the tops.

I wish I could say the same about the bathrooms, though. Housed in that aforementioned drywall corridor, the toilets here feel cheap, almost tacked on. These are colorless, even classless, facilities.

The walls are white, bare and porous, allowing you to hear just about every sound possible by the nearby string of cashiers. The floors, covered in rough-looking black and gray tile and dark grout, are dour-looking and appear dingier than they really are (or at least probably are). The fixtures are your standard white porcelain variety; clean and in good shape but boring and bland. There are no decorations on the wall or any sense of color anywhere.

Even worse is the sharp smell of urine that permeates the air in here. Really stinging, rivaling the stink more commonly associated with poorly kept gas station stalls. (What is it with fancy-looking stores that have foul smelling toilets? I'm looking at you, Fresh Market Orlando and Bed Bath and Beyond Waterford Lakes, for an answer here!) The smell was so bad, it rivaled the pungency of the toilet I visited at the Riverside Walk trail head in Zion National Park -- and that was an outhouse!

Marks out of 10:

4. Bland environment through and through -- with a smell that lingers long in the nose and palette. Great conceit for wine, not great for bathrooms, though.

Comments to the Management:

For starters, how about putting something on the walls here -- like a circular or some of those general wine vine decorations you can pick up at any dollar store. Next, put some air fresheners here -- you really need it!

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