bellboy/botones - (respectful)

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Vocabulary / Vocabulario Español-Inglés' started by satch3zg, Aug 2, 2008.

  1. satch3zg Member

    Alexandria, VA, USA
    Japanese & English (USA)

    I just have a very quick question. Is "botones" an acceptable term for hotel bellboys/bellmen?
    Is there another more respectful term? For example, in English you can call them hotel porter, bellhop, etc.

    ¡Muchas gracias!
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 26, 2014
  2. Diddy

    Diddy Senior Member

    Yes, the commonest noun is "botones". You can also use: portero.

  3. zumac Senior Member

    Mexico City
    USA: English & Spanish
    It seems that in most Latin American countries the most common term for bellboy/bellman is "botones." Curiously enough, this term does not appear in the dictionary of the Real Academia Española, and neither does the term "maletero" which could be a possible alternative.

    So, what do they call a bellboy/bellman in Spain? Several Google sites say "mozo" or "mozo de hotel", but it would be better to hear from a member from Spain.

    The word "portero" can be tricky. This generally means doorman. If in a particular hotel, the doorman takes your luggage up to your room, then he is also performing the functions of a bellboy/bellman or a "botones." In this case, you can refer to him as "portero."

    However, if the doorman or "portero" is not responsible for taking you luggage to your room, then you should not address the person taking up the luggage as "portero."

    Last edited: Aug 3, 2008
  4. Diddy

    Diddy Senior Member

    Yes, it would be helpful to hear opinions of foreros from Spain or from South America, as in Latin America "mozo" is not a word to use in this context. Mozo is commonly used when referring to country or farms workers.

  5. satch3zg Member

    Alexandria, VA, USA
    Japanese & English (USA)
    This is a late/off-the-topic post, but the differences between Spain Spanish and Latin American Spanish amaze me. They are so interesting.
  6. xocoyotl Member

    Burtonsville, Md
    México, Español
    Yeah, me too. Almost like two different languages. I wonder if it's going to be like English, where American English has become the predominant language worldwide.
  7. satch3zg Member

    Alexandria, VA, USA
    Japanese & English (USA)
    I can't comment on Spanish because I have such little knowledge about it, but I suppose it's like American English vs. British English. A little bit.
  8. unknownspacepioneer New Member

    Santiago, Chile
    chilean spanish
    actually, portero or mozo are not the propiate terms to reffer to this person, you can call him botones or GROOM, portero (entrance guard)is another function at the hotel quite different than the bellboy.
  9. Skadus New Member

    Málaga, Spain
    German, Germany
    Es un thread bastante antiguo, pero a lo mejor sirve de ayuda para lectores futuros:

    Trabajo en España en un resort y usamos el término 'botones'.

    Sin embargo hay que tener en cuenta que la empresa es estadounidense ;)
  10. Berecavi Member

    En México usamos "botones" o también se les dice "bellboy" como en inglés. Y no es ofensivo.

  11. eulb New Member

    Spain Spanish

    I'm spanish and i say the regular term is "Botones"."Maletero" for me is the trunk of a car, and "Portero" is the doorman of a private building.

    Anyway, The word "Botones" can means to things (to my knowledge), buttons like the ones in a shirt and "big boots".

    There is nothing offensive in calling somebody "Botones" still in my opinion it is a weird term.

    Me voy.
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010
  12. Mobydick New Member

    Costa Rica
    Colombia, Spanish

    Yo soy colombiano y he vivido en Costa Rica por 10 años y sé que en ambos países se dice "botones".

    I'm colombian and I've been living in Costa Rica for 10 years and I know that in both countries we say "botones". Even when there's nothing wrong about the term, I wouldn't use it to refer to them directly, like:

    "Ey, Botones!" (I'd rather something like "Ey, señor"), because that could sound pejorative.

    But it's a perfect use when talking about their position:

    "¿El hotel tiene servicio de botones?"
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2012
  13. Darío Anselmo

    Darío Anselmo Senior Member

    COSTA RICA - Spanish
    Really? To my knowledge, "mozo" is even more commonly used for a waiter, especially in fancy restaurants.

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