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Abandoned Buildings Hotels and Hospitals FAQ

Hotels and hospitals, those two tremendously expensive places to spend the night, are wonderful places for expeditions. The older the institution, the better the chance that it has accessible rooftops, tunnels, basements and other vast neglected realms waiting to be explored.

What's so special about hotels and hospitals?
Most buildings worth a second glance at are strictly reserved for certain types of people: schools are strictly for students and faculty, banks are strictly for customers and employees, offices are strictly for staff, and so on. Hotels and hospitals, on the other hand, have no clearly defined criteria for who's allowed and who isn't, and are populated by ever-changing groups of people who will very rarely recognize one another. This makes them easy targets.

How much risk is there of getting caught?
There is a fair risk of being questioned ("can I help you"), but unless you're doing something exceptionally suspicious or naughty, there is very little chance of being confronted. If you are confronted, you'll probably just be asked to leave.

How much risk is there of getting injured?
Hotels and hospitals are quite safe for the most part, except perhaps on their rooftops and in their mechanical rooms. In hospitals you'll also want to be careful around garbage, fluids and anything marked with the radioactive or biohazard symbols.

What supplies should I bring when exploring hotels and hospitals?
Bring a flashlight for the behind-the-scenes areas. In a hotel, you may wish to consider dressing up and carrying such credibility props as a briefcase or a cell phone. In a hospital, it's quite easy to acquire a patient, doctor or nurse disguise, but if you're disguised in hospital property you increase the chance of getting seriously punished if you are caught. Few supplies are necessary in either location, as it's easy to "live off the land".

What preparations are necessary before entering the building?
Know your story. There's a very good chance you'll be interacting with other people while in the building, so unless you're excellent at thinking on your feet, you should have a detailed, realistic story of what you're up to in mind before you get there, and anyone you're exploring with should have the same story. At the very least, you should know the name and location of the person you're pretending to visit. Write this down on a slip of paper for a quick and simple prop.

Where can I see people infiltrating hotels and hospitals on screen?
Conspiracy Theory (1997) - Crazyman Jerry Fletcher (Mel Gibson) is busted out of the abandoned wing of a hospital by his pal Alice Sutton (Julia Roberts).
Fugitive, The (1996) - Fugitive Dr. Richard Kimble (Harrison Ford) first escapes police by running through drains and jumping off a dam, then later makes himself fake ID so he can infiltrate a hospital and hack its computers, and then later infiltrates a hotel's employee-only areas to catch the bad guy.
Heat (1996) - Robert DeNiro slips on an employee jacket to use a hotel's employee only areas so he can kill some guy.

Where can I read more?
Infiltration 1 contains information on the Royal York, Toronto's Fanciest Hotel; Infiltration 2 contains details about St. Michael's Hospital, Infiltration 6 contains details on infiltrating the pool areas of the luxury hotels of Toronto and Dallas, and Infiltration 8 tells the story of how a chase led to the discovery of the newly-constructed floors at the top of the Royal York.

Where can I look for more information on the web?
Nowhere that I know of — the web is strangely silent about exploring non-abandoned hospitals and hotels.