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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Bait And Switch Weekend Getaway

Patricia at Subjective Soup posted about her experience blogging about Goodreads and how the founder contacted her directly to help her with her issues. Of course I immediately thought of our recent Holiday Inn experience. We've made complaints via their website and no one has contacted us. I thought I'd see if blogging got any response from them.

My girlfriend and I had our long weekend getaway this past weekend. She booked a King Villa at the Holiday Inn in Lake Geneva, WI. She requested a King Villa with a balcony and was told by the person taking the reservation that our balcony request would be included in the notes. A King Villa has a King bed, a whirlpool and fireplace in the room, and a full kitchen. The reservation was prepaid, non-refundable.

It sounds wonderful, doesn't it? Romantic even, right?

It would have been, if that was the room we would have gotten. What we got instead was a first floor room (no balcony) with a Queen bed, a regular walk in shower and no fireplace. When we complained we were basically told you prepaid, there is nothing we can or will do. It was either take the room they gave us (which WAS NOT what we prepaid for) or lose our money and get a room elsewhere that met our original requirements, which were a King bed, a whirlpool and fireplace IN THE ROOM and a balcony.

We had difficulty finding Holiday Inn in Lake Geneva, WI because it really isn't a true Holiday Inn, it's a timeshare. Nowhere on the Holiday Inn in Lake Geneva, WI website does it say that it was a timeshare. We went into the Geneva Resort to ask where the Holiday Inn in Lake Geneva, WI hotel was and they told us that they handle check in for the Holiday Inn in Lake Geneva, WI, checked us in, and directed us to the Holiday Inn in Lake Geneva, WI buildings.

There were several other issues with our room. One being that the blanket on the bed and the extra blanket stowed in the armoire both had old cigarette burns on them. This is in a room that is supposed to be non-smoking. The towels in the bathroom were full of lint. After showering and toweling off I had to take my previously worn tee shirt to rub off the lint that the towel left on me. This wasn't just 1 towel that was linty. All but 1 of the bath towels were linty and I unfortunately was the recipient of those linty towels. The room was equipped with a coffee maker, but did not include enough coffee for our 2 day stay. Only 1 packet of coffee was included and the powdered creamer was caked solid and obviously ancient. We had to schlep to the Geneva Resort to get another packet of coffee and purchase a carton of creamer at a convenience mart because we had no idea how old those powdered creamer packets were.

This wasn't the end of our disappointing hotel stay. Friday night we ordered a pizza delivered to the room and shortly after we saw flashing lights. Several squad cars and 2 paramedic vehicles were in front of our building. No word on why. If there was any safety issue involved, no one told us. They were there for nearly 2 hours. We were left to wonder...heart attack (then why were the paramedics parked so long?), domestic disturbance? or ??? Saturday night I was woken up to someone screaming F-bombs at 2am. It was like staying in hillbilly hell.

My girlfriend travels a lot for business. She has recently put a different chain on her do not book list. I've often stayed at Holiday Inns when I visit Wisconsin. They've been my 'go to' choice when I visit there because of their locations, cleanliness and quality. I've never had an experience like this.

Our hotel experience was definitely not at all what we expected and it did not meet our expectations of a Holiday Inn experience. We didn't even get what we paid for! We basically paid for 1 thing and got something of considerably lesser quality. We have made complaints online at the Holiday Inn website, but have gotten no response. I'll post an update if Holiday Inn responds.

Lola's Diner©2008-2010


StaceyC4 said...

That totally sucks for sure. Keep writing, keep complaining, stay in their face until they acknowledge you. Some companies truly don't care but I would think something as well-known as a Holiday Inn would step up. Keep us posted!

Oh, and on a side note, are you missing the traffic from EC? I know I am...

I am Harriet said...

I am disappointed in Holiday Inn lately. I think it's the crappy new logo.

Stacey- fewer people are using entrecard because of all of the stuff...even though you quit you'd probably still be getting less traffic. I'm very cautious and not dropping 300 any more.

Lola- when's GF getting a name???? Your fans wanna know...

Lin said...

That really stinks. I'd go one step further and write a letter to their home office AND make a phone call. Forget the email, you were ripped off and I'd be letting somebody know about it.

Melinda said...

ugh I hate when companies don't step up to make things right! hope you get some justice.

TAG said...

Make sure you have your documents in order then try the hotel one last time. At a minimum I'd expect a full refund for the room.

When they give you the same crap as before, be sure they understand this is their last chance to make things right before you go to the State and file a complaint with their consumer fraud division.

Fraud may be a harsh word, but that's exactly what I would call what you describe.


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