Website Keeps an Eye on Airport Carpets

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While there are many things to notice at an airport -- ticket lines, passengers being screened at security, how bright the florescent lights are -- carpeting is probably not something you pay attention to, unless you follow a website dedicated to showcasing airport carpet.


Perhaps one of the more esoteric websites around, the site features readers' submissions of images of carpets from the world's airports.

"Trapped in an airport? Bored out of your skull? Become an Airport Carpeteer," the homepage reads. "Help us help the airport carpets of the world by photographing them now."

On the Carpets for Airports site, users can click on an area of the globe marked with a red dot to call up an image of that airport's carpet. Each image is accompanied by a colorful, tongue-in-cheek description such as the ones below:

Phoenix Airport Carpet
"The treacherous vertical wind vortexes that once made PHX one of the most inhospitable airports in the world are here celebrated upon its carpet." (Photo, pandora_666, flickr)

Hong Kong Airport Carpet
"Like a stained glass window of the ground, HKG offers a transcendent spectacle for travelers lucky enough to walk upon its hallowed weave." (Photo, jburgin, flickr)

Heathrow Airport Carpet
"One of the greatest airport carpets ever manufactured. LGW might seem like a melee of monochrome millipedes squirming across the floor, but it's so much more than that." (Photo, arenamontanus, flickr)

Changi Airport Carpet
"One of the most psychologically terrifying carpets in the world, SIN' vertiginous pattern was designed to give anyone who walks on it the impression of falling out of the window of a skyscraper in the brightly lit Downtown Core, Singapore's business district." (Photo, KC Toh, flickr)

AOL Travel News reached out to the carpet connoisseur for comments on the website's mission. A representative, who prefers to remain anonymous, says the idea for site came to the founder after he found a flight was delayed.

"Sitting in the terminal staring at the carpet in a slightly altered state opened up to him, what Aldous Huxley would have called, 'the doors of perception', but what we prefer to call 'the carpets of cognizance,'" says the website rep.

Carpets for Airports has been collecting pictures on an ad hoc basis since 2002, but the site started in earnest in 2008. It has collected about 150 images to date. When asked to pick the best and worst, the rep says, "The world's worst country for airport floor coverings is undoubtedly Italy," but adds, "We like just about every airport carpet we see."

It seems the so-called "carpeteers" at Carpets for Airports aren't the only fans interested in archiving the fabrics that cover the floors of well trodden places. Travel news website Hotel Chatter features a similar column showcasing pictures of hotel carpets from around the world.

(Libby Zay contributed to this report)

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