As hotels spend billions on 21st-century upgrades, younger generations of travelers will grow up sleeping in a new breed of hotel.
The money is going for things such as better beds, splashier showers, trendier bars and flat-screen TVs.

A recent survey by the American Hotel & Lodging Association suggests the transformation is well underway in an industry that this year is spending $5 billion on upgrades.

Of 9,300 U.S. hotels in the survey, 69% had upgraded their bedding in the last year; 72% were offering voice mail; 82% were offering wireless Internet; and virtually all were wired to offer cable or satellite television.

As in life generally, something's lost when something's gained. Gone are the floral, synthetic bedspreads, the sanitizer bands around toilet seats, ashtrays and wake-up calls from real people.

With that in mind, USA TODAY asked hoteliers, professors and travelers to recall amenities or services that have disappeared or are on the way out.

"I remember when bottle openers were attached behind bathroom doors at hotels," says Marriott International CEO J.W. "Bill" Marriott, whose father built a hotel empire after starting with a root beer stand he opened in 1927. Twist-offs and pop tops did them in.

Missing the old items or services is another question. Marriott says the back of the door has found a much better use as a towel rack.

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