We Inspect in Person.
Like Your Mother-in-Law.

At Oyster.com, we send expert hotel investigators to every single property we cover. Yes, every single one. So there will be no surprises when you arrive at your hotel – what you see on Oyster.com is what you're going to get.

Our hotel investigators are professional photographers and travel critics. All the people we hire undergo rigorous training in Oyster's unique reviewing style, which prepares them to write a journalistic review or detailed survey about each hotel visited.

Our editorial team in New York helps package and polish the final product, so you can feel confident that every review on our site is the culmination of our extensive knowledge of hotels.

Interested in working for us? We're hiring.

We Use Top-of-the-Range Camera Equipment

All of our investigators use full-frame Nikon or Canon DSLRs, and take hundreds of photos at every hotel. This allows us to show you every nook and cranny in incredible detail. We use wide-angle and zoom lenses to help provide a comprehensive view of every property.

Unlike the glossy, often deceiving, marketing images we expose in our Photo Fakeouts series, our photos are always undoctored, so that you can see the hotel as it really is.

We Publish Expert, Journalistic Reviews

A picture is worth a thousand words – but words can be helpful too. That's why we provide expert, comprehensive reviews of the hotels we visit. Our hotel investigators visit dozens and sometimes hundreds of hotels in each destination.

Unlike many other travel publications, our reviews aren't sugar-coated – we tell you the pros and the cons of every property. It's our goal to help travellers find the right hotel for their trip.

We Take Panoramics

In addition to honest, original photos, we also take panoramic images using High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography and fish-eye lenses. These allow consumers to perceive numerous spaces throughout a hotel more accurately.

Vanity Suites Hotel

Cala Mesquida, Majorca, Balearic Islands

Macalister Mansion

Georgetown, Penang Island, Penang

1 Hotel South Beach

South Beach, Miami, Florida

Hotel Sir Anthony

Playa de las Americas, Tenerife, Canary Islands

We Rate Hotels Fairly

Though our reviews are unabashedly honest, we are careful to evaluate each hotel within the context of its category.

We're never holding a Holiday Inn to the same standard of a Ritz-Carlton; rather, we're assessing how it holds up compared to other mid-range hotels.

To make a hotel's category clear, we assign it a pearl rating, which is similar to the star ratings you'll find on other sites. These are not based on how much we liked a hotel, but rather on what features and room amenities it offers.

Even if we give a hostel a two-pearl rating, it can still get a rave review from Oyster if it shines in its category.

We're picky, but not petty.

We're Trekking the Globe, Every Day

We haven't been everywhere yet, but we're working on it.


Investigators in the
field on any given day.


New hotels added to
Oyster.com each month.


Countries visited.


Total hotels visited.

Where we've covered hotels so far: