Hotel is set in a luxury hotel in New Orleans, Louisiana, called as St. Gregory Hotel. The plot weaves through the foyers and suites of the hotel as the various characters of the novel are drawn together to make a breathtaking tale of love, bankruptcy, business takeover, robbery, blackmail, and ultimate redemption. The vividly sketched characters include the hotel staff, hotel industry tycoons, and various other guests who happen to be staying at the hotel at that time.
The entire plot of the Hotel takes place over five days from Monday through Friday during which period the lives of the characters intertwine to form a series of private, public and personal dramas that unfold at the St. Gregory Hotel. Besides the main characters, the hotel itself plays a vital role in the unraveling of the plot, as its management struggles to avoid a hostile takeover by the O’Keefe chain of hotels.
The five eventful days that form the basis of the novel feature independent episodes that delve into particular aspects of the daily routine in a large hotel. For example, the cleaning lady, Meg Yetmein, steals steaks by hiding it under her clothes at the end of her shift, while the bartender, Tom Earlshore, skims liquor to make up for recently losing his post. Hotel also throws light on how prostitutes enter and exit the hotel without being detected and how hotel thieves use various techniques to rob the guests.