According to reviews on Tripadvisor, a common theme appears to be excessive time spent at check-in and lack of friendly island hospitality. I'm guessing, but guests requesting late check-out have a great impact. Housekeeping is unable to turnover rooms that haven't been vacated and thoroughly cleaned. One of the challenges all Marriott's face is the possibility of being short-handed on housekeeping which will have a certain impact in delaying check-in. Two and three hours is excessive. All of the issues noted on TripAdvisor are solvable by management. The question is, is management aware?
I always take Trip Advisor reviews that use the words "rude" or "surly" with a grain of salt. I just returned from a week at the St. Kitts Marriott and noticed several reviews using the same wording about that property. What did I actually experience? Probably the best staffed property in the Marriott system. They couldn't do enough for me and my family.
Having been using the advice given by Trip Advisor respndents for years, I've come to read between the lines to get to the truth. When somebody gives a property 1 star and says in their review that "I asked for more towels and they never delivered them", that doesn't tell me anything. Very often ones attitude toward staff will be reflected in the staff members response. If a person asks for an upgrade at check-in and none are available, they will say the staff was rude.
Earlier in the year, grouting/retiling placed one bath out of commission. It was an excuse for an impulsive getaway. I did not check reviews prior to booking. Giving the hotel the benefit of the doubt, the staff were attentive, pleasant and responsive, but the furnishings and the room had seen better days. Checking reviews later, there were several highlighting conditions that were spot-on.
In contrast, I compared reviews for the Marriott Clearwater at Sand Key vs the Residence Inn Treasure Island. Both enjoyed a mix with the general themes of great location, great views, clean rooms, outstanding staff, best value and so on. But Clearwater Sand Key had several recent reviews about dated room appearance. Residence Inn Treasure Island won and our experience matched and exceeded the expectations set by TripAdvisor.
Going under the hood, I learned that property managers do take these reviews into consideration. It is to their advantage to correct conditions that guests find dissatisfactory. While there is always the possibility of a rogue individual posting something negative, this can be easily offset by looking at other reviews the individual has posted.
Standalone reviews in my mind, carry less weight. If an individual is consistently posting positives about Hilton and a negative about Marriott, it's suspect. On the other hand, individuals posting 'superlatives' about Marriott and encounters a bad apple, it's more likely than not to be true.
I'm not so quick to dismiss reports about 'rude' employees as Mikieg and Stepping Stones suggest. To me, if a property receives several reviews about dated furnishings and rooms that have seen better times, it ~is~ very rude of management to ignore these conditions and a failure to deliver up to expectations.
Usually, firstname.lastname@example.org is the direction I head to report either a positive or negative hotel experience - AFTER a stay. I've never actually tried contacting them before a stay. Given your concerns, it might be worthwhile. You have a reservation # and the URL for the specific TripAdvisor reviews.
Given the Marriott Guest Satisfaction Survey system, the GSS scores for this property should reflect many if not all of the comments seen on TripAdvisor. For example, the long check-in lines will be reflected in the Arrival Experience scores. The cracks and holes in the walls, the water accumulation should reflect in Housekeeping and Everything In Working Order scores.
Report back what happens. Good luck.
Go to the Ratings and Review section of this message board. Find Frenchman's Cove. You will see my review from last December and then all the follow up reviews. Our experiences mirror those on Trip Advisor.
Remember, Marriott says this is Category 7 and charges you accordingly. IMHO... the view and location are Category 8, the rooms are Category 4, the staff are Category 1.
More St. Kitts threads: