Thursday, May 22, 2008

Travails of Hotel Stay...

Am usually not very fussy about hotel stay. After all its only my luggage which stays there, and eventually i do spend the night there after a days work,
So what is required from a hotel ?

  • Cleanliness

  • Room Space

  • Clean sanitised Bathrooms

  • TV

  • Laundry

  • Efficient Room service

  1. One of my favorites has been the TAJ Connemara. At the Connemara, if they send you a car to pick you up, by the time you reach the lobby, everyone right from the reception to the Manager acknowledges you by Name. Welcome Ms. Subbaraman. Wow i like that. These guys surely know how to make a guest feel very very special. Thats why they are the TAJ.

Then there was breakfast the next morning.

  • When I found the idlis not that soft(less use of UDad dal) i mentioned it in my feedback. In my next visit there, the chef asked how was the Idly. I was so surprised and touched that they actually noticed the complaint.

  • The second time, there was a challenge with drinking water. I did not know that the bottled water was chargeable. As opposed to what ? there was no other water bottle. And it was certainly not Evian that i had consumed. Just good old Bottled water. Once again, they took note of it. And asked me the next time i was checking out, whether all was in order, in terms of water. How thotful.

2. The Trident Hilton at BHubaneshwar. Well there was feedback that i had written, for which the manager writes to me on email. His Faux pax ? He spelled my name totally wrong. There is nothing more important for a guest that his/her own name. SO when one is making an attempt to get feedback, at least ensure it is addressed correctly.

3. A Chennai Business Hotel (on St. MAry's Road, Alwarpet) challenges :

1. On my arrival to the hotel(my flight was an hour delayed) I was given to understand that the room was not available. There on after waiting for about 30-45 minutes was given the key.
I was informed that it was a "club room" and that I would need to check out the next day. Frankly there was not much of a difference.

My friend (who was there with some stuff given by my family) came up to the room to drop the things off. I get a call from the Hotel reception asking if it will be a "double occupancy" ! I mentioned my friend was dropping stuff off, they said its for "your safety" . MY friend asked me what the matter was, needless to say i was embarrassed to even mention it.

Well it’s a little surprising to note that this hotel has ONLY male housekeeping, room service, and bell boys, who come in to drop luggage etc upto the room. So is this really for "my safety" or a commercial spin ?? The insinuation was unbearable and could not even explain to my male friend that this is what the reception is insinuating!

The fact that the front line staff was NOT at all apologetic as the worst! Finally I got to talk to a manager and was "allowed" to stay on in the club room as it was NOT my fault they couldn't manage the rooms effectively.

Yes a written feedback was sent, but looks like no one wanted to address it in writing or show any sense of remorse.

2. On my arrival on 12th May, I was given a certain room no XYZ . This when I entered, was ALSO occupied by another foreigner/male guest. How shocking!

When I apologised to the guest and checked with the trailing bell boy, was given to understand the room was indeed XYZ!

Speechless and furious, I get into the lift only to be met by the reception staff with a key to another "club room". I must confess there is no difference between a normal room and their supposed club room!

I spent a sleepless night wondering if anyone else will also be able to enter my room due to any such errors in the front office ??

The total indifference and lack of apology was just unbearable. I wrote out a written feedback only to be met by their manager in the morning who assured this wont be repeated.

Wont be repeated ? Am surprised the HOTEL is taking us for granted like this. If it was so much about the safety, and so particular about room occupancy one wonders why no one was sorry that I was given the key to another Male guests room!

The thing is, this hotel on St. Mary's Road Chennai started out pretty all rite say a year ago or so. But now, looks like they are taking their guests for granted .

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