According to for example this Superuser question and answers, one can easily extend the range of a WiFi network by having multiple access points with the same SSID. This didn't work for me (and other commenters). Clients stubbornly stick to weak access points and there was no seamless handover, like there is in GSM, for example.
Then we tried Open Mesh + CloudTrax. They say:
Open-Mesh creates ultra low-cost, plug-and-play wireless mesh networks that spread an Internet connection throughout a hotel, apartment, office, campus, cafe, village—and just about anywhere else.
With my WiFi analyzer, I noticed that it merely does the same thing as having multiple access points: it creates multiple networks with the same SSID. The same problems arise: you can't just walk through the building and not lose your connections.
So what is actually the good way of making a large WiFi network, with proper handover and such? Does the protocol even allow it?
I must admit, I've never used my wifi analyzer in a Hotel, but I can't imagine I would see 50 access points with the same SSID.
Edit: BTW, would it not be possible to have multiple antenna's transmitting the signal of one access point that you wire up throughout your building? Or will this cause phase problems in the signal, and therefore they might actually worsen transmission quality?
edit2: Apparently, 802.11r was devised for this. It will be years before all clients support it, I guess.