A Swiss academic was refused a bedroom at a guesthouse in Oxford after he admitted to being a smoker.
The 11-bedroom, five-diamond-rated Burlington House has banned smoking since it opened in 1997.
Kamal Parsi-Pour , 30, a university assistant in modern history, said: "I assured them I wouldn't smoke, but this wasn't good enough." He was told that it would be better if he stayed somewhere else.
Parsi-Pour described his treatment as "uncivilised". He added: "After lecturing me, the manager shouted down the phone, ‘We don't want to take your booking,' and then hung up."
Roy Laidlow, owner of Burlington House, said that he has had problems in the past with people smoking in bathrooms or when leaning out of the windows.