I realize that this is from only a one location experience but curious if anyone else has experience the same ...
I have been staying at the Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge. They have started renovations on the restaurant and moved operations to a temporary room. During these renovations they have stopped room service stating that they couldn't figure out how to accommodate this service. I find that odd since I can call down and they will provide carryout service. When I commented that it will be nice to have that service back after renovations they indicated that the management is considering not bringing room service back. It won't be until March until it will be known what they decide but I was wondering if any other Insiders have seen anything similar elsewhere. In my opinion this is a disservice ... this is one thing I look for having available at a FULL service hotel.
Hi Frogs, great topic you've posted here. I checked in with the property and, as you've mentioned, they said that they will not be offering room service after renovations have been completed. I've reach out to our team to see if we can expect this from other properties as well. I'll keep you posted with what I hear back!
lindseyh, that would be a big disservice & downside if it expands to other properties. One of the reasons to stay at a full-service property is because it is a full-service property. Duh. If one wants limited service that's what Springhill Suites etc is for. No reason to pay full service prices if one is only going to get limited service offerings.
Since 2013, many hotels including the largest within NYC have ended room service. This is more of consequence of client behavior (lack of use) than anything else. I suspect this trend is playing into this particular hotels decision. In general, many hotels are offering cafeteria type options on-site and/or brown bag to go, etc. As consumer behavior continues to evolve, amenities such as room service will evolve as well.
I Remember reading that a Marriott somewhere is now offering "room service" in a bag, handed over at the door. I don't often use room service, maybe 2 or 3 times during 2014, an 80-night year. It will be sad to see it go, but I can see it disappear from all but the 5-star offerings...
The new Marriott Marquis in DC went to that model. It's one reason it's off my list of places to stay. When I order room service I expect a full meal (and pay the very high prices that go along with it since it's room service). What I don't expect is a microwaved item in a bag with plastic cutlery, which has been reported in the DC Marriott Marquis thread on Flyertalk. If Brooklyn Marriott goes to the no room service model that property too will be off my list.
While I don't eat at a hotel every night I often do have room service, as it's easier to order it up to the room & keep working if have a project or if not working, can have it while I watch the telly in pjs or sweats vs. eating at a restaurant by myself.
IT becomes a business decision by the hotel who is in business to make money. most changes a business makes pleases some, angers some and most aren't impacted so don't care. I never order room service as i prefer to just go downstairs But i can understand it is a convenience that others want
I totally understand your frustration. You might recall the New York Hilton Midtown making headlines in 2013 when they were the first full-service hotel to discontinue room service. If you didn't catch that, here's an article:
I recently stayed there (horrific experience, but that's a totally different story) and found a "Herb + Kitchen" menu in my room, which I presumed to be room service reinstated. It was "take out" delivered in a paper bag!
Room service has always been a problem with most full-service hotels. Guests always give it low marks on surveys because the food is overpriced, often poor quality, arrives cold, and comes with hefty surcharges. I don't think you will see restaurants disappearing from full-service hotels anytime soon (after all, that is what makes the hotel "full-service"), but many full-service hotels are trying alternative concepts to provide a better experience to guests that is more profitable for the hotel.
It's sad that hotels think removing services are a way to enhance their offerings. I don't think anyone would ever say 'the best meal I ate while on the trip was room service' or if they did, they really need to get out more LOL but it's a staple fall back option that many business travelers rely on. I know for a fact if I'm at a Marriott (full service) I can call down and have a Marriott burger and fries delivered to my room by 11pm pretty much around the world. It's also as I've found always about the same 15-20 bucks (local currency). Other food stuffs are hit or miss but I've ventured into other offerings at times and found them infinitely better than a trip to McDonalds, if @ 10x the cost.
I'm hopeful that this is a slight change for select hotels. That hotel in particular has some pretty good dining options right there and within a short walk. There's also a ton of delivery options. Perhaps the hotels will partner with some places like grubhub or gowaiter more often and help provide a better option. Maybe have the food delivered, assembled onto the normal delivery tray and then brought up.
Either way seems "the times they are a changin" and not for the better in a lot of ways. Marriott and other's attempts to cater to the "younger" generation, with the high tech and "trendy" bits are sometimes cool but in my experience detract from what a quality stay should be. The value proposition is changing, hotels seem to think they can charge more and do less all at a time when steady business travel is on the decline. Not sure how everyone else's world looks but I have to actively find projects where customers want someone on site these days. Most of my customers say "nah, we'll save the 1500/week travel costs and you can just be a voice on the phone" and I hear the same from most of our partners. Mix in all of this with diminishing values for being loyal and it's a wonder really why we do this anymore.
Now, you have hit an interesting topic, zukracer.
I've been working in the law for over 30 years now and never the innovator, the law has been slow to move away from the drama of an all encompassing trial. But gradually things are a-changing, and I've been asked a few times wether I would like to appear upon my clients behalf by videolink. I always refuse and travel down, as I firmly believe I have a better chance to get my way when face to face before the judge. In my view its no coincidence that I've won every case where the other side has appeared by videolink.
Even so, it's becoming more popular and clients are proving ever more reluctant to pay my traveling and accomodation costs. I fear one day I'll be unable to persuade a client on the benefits of face-to-face representation, and be forced to litigate via a screen. Mind you, if I cant persuade my own client of the benfits of face-to-face representation, maybe it's time to go to pasture!
I do however think that modern tech does mean that travel is ever less needed. When I started practicing in the early eighties I saw every client face to face, from the first consultation to trial. More than ever now I'm turning up at court and meeting my client face to face for the very first time having conducted the entire case using telephone and Internet conferencing. Where is this going to leave the industrial hotel groups, Hilton, Marriott, IHG and SPG? Scrapping over the remaining conference business and the (increasing) leisure hotel business. And leisure hotel stays are rapidly increasing. As a kid my only knowledge of a hotel was the red buildings on the Monopoly board, "a place for rich people to visit" was how my Dad answered the question about what a hotel was. My first hotel stay was at a legal conference I attended with my boss at the Stakis Hotel in Nottingham. My kids vhowever vew hotel stays at Holiday Inn Express as ordinary, Marriotts as a treat, indulged a few times each year. And yes, my kids are probably better travelled than most of their friends, but one way or another most of their friends have stayed in motorway, city-centre and/or country house hotels in their few years. Hotels do seem to be becoming ever more a fabric of our lives...
If it wasn't for the location being close to the office I would consider changing hotels. I get in late most nights and usually want to crash and head to bed. Room service is handy and quicker than finding a place to eat or delivery. True there are plenty of places to eat nearby but that also requires walking alone at night which isn't my preference in NY. I consider this a guest disservice. I expect that when I stay at a FS Marriott room service is included.
I don't understand why they can't deliver since they will still have the restaurant in the hotel. Just make no sense to me when considering guest relations.
I guess things change and we have to adapt or move on. Just disappointing that's all.
You should mention that to the GM (your expectations & why going out doesn't always work).
On a different note, there's a report on Flyertalk that the JW Marriott Cherry Creek (which used to have a good reputation for its exec lounge) is shutting down the exec lounge & will offer only points or a $15 brekkie voucher. Isn't there supposed to be a standard with JWs? Supposedly this is part of a 'pilot' program by Marriott (this property & 2 others). Can't wait to see how they "enhance" JWs - or are they going to drop the standard.
I would expect to be able to receive Room Service and a lounge at a full serve Marriott or higher. Even some CY offer room service (Ft Meade/Annapolis Junction, MD comes to mind). I do not often get room service or even eat in a hotel other than perhaps breakfast as I like to try local foods but there are those times after a long day or travel when it is great or for breakfast when you have a morning of calls that you can't sneak out.
What's next, eliminating desks....oh wait!
Anybody else been seeing an acceleration of Marriott hotel's "Fresh bites" - no room service policy? I mostly travel alone and always have work to do in the hotel room at night so Room Service is a staple in my world (and a way to maximize points at most hotels). In the past week I've tried out the plastic wrapped Fresh Bites at the Marriott Farmington, CT and the Marriott Marquis San Diego and both have been huge, expensive disappointments.
Does Marriott expect us to continue to order $70 "delivered" meals (CT) and eat them with plastic forks and paper napkins? In CA, no salt or pepper delivered, no bagged croutons for the plastic-wrapped Caesar salad, no butter for the dinner rolls... In both places, there was no signature required on the bill and I had to tip the deliverer in cash only?
I've been known to spend a little more of my company's travel budget selecting Marriotts instead of Courtyards or Fairfield Inns for the room service availability but if this keeps up, less room charges for the corporation and less food sales because I'll go out and get take-out back to the CY or FI from a good restaurant - if I'm going to eat with a plastic fork, it's going to be good food... I will miss the Marriott points for dinners though...
I wondered how the hotels were eventually going to nickel and dime us like the airlines...
The problem here is that room service is very costly to staff, and hence provide. Where 20 years ago maybe 10% of rooms would have ordered $20 of overpriced room service generating say $400 of turnover for the cost of one $8/hr short-order chef, say $70 for the night plus $100 for ingredients, today that has fallen by 3/4 meaning only $100 of room service orders. The economics don't stack up - not at all. Result, bagged take-out. As I said earlier in the thread, only 5-stars are likely to offer traditional room service in future, their well-heeled guests are prepared to pay more and it's an expected service, loss making or not!
I've heard that there is a trend amongst some hotels to discontinue room service at some properties, and not just Marriott.
I think it would be an interesting challenge if they were to take a hotel or two and find out a way to make it profitable to have room service. Right now, from an outsider's point of view anyway, they have to pay a lot of expenses and they have tacked on so many fees that it is an expensive service and not profitable at the same time. The challenge would be to get more people to use it and to have it profitable. Somehow, takeout pizza places have figured out how to make a profit at a good price, and hotel room service has not. That said, there are some times where room service is just great to have. I'd hate to see it go.
I understand the economic arguments with regards the decreasing room service use but at the same time there's a fundamental standard that HAS to be delivered if you want to classify your property as full service or five stars (and I'm not talking about the exact technical definition).
The expectation is that at a Marriott or JW room service is better than microwaved 7-11 food.
Rather than delivering food in a paper bag, reengineer the kitchen and menu. I worked restaurants as a kid. There were a bunch of really good meals we could prepare in a few minutes with very little staff. You could staff a chef and a runner and surely there would be enough orders to justify the full service.
What's next? A bucket of water instead of a pool? Reuse newspapers for the bathroom? Sleeping bags instead of sheets.
Lifetime P. 1000+ nights.