I was a guest at The Citizen Hotel, Sacramento on August 11. In the middle of the night, a man was allowed to roam the hotel and tried to get me out of my room by yelling fire/fire drill - claiming he was staff. Luckily, as it was in the middle of the night, I checked the peephole and noticed he was crouching at my door. I called security. A few minutes later there was a scuffle and the criminal was attacking the lone security guard. I grabbed my iron and went to the hall to make sure the security guard didn't get hurt. After the criminal was finally pinned down, I called the front desk and told them to call the police. After the police took him outside, the man eventually told them he was trying to get me to open my door so he could jump me and rob me. This guy who was clearly not dressed as a guest would be expected - was allowed to freely enter the hotel past doorman, security, valet, and front desk staff. This guy was just out of jail and on probation. After his arrest, I returned to my room - where there was ANOTHER guy in the hall who clearly didn't belong. I called security and they said they thought they had seen the guy in the hotel before so he might be a guest - at this point the guy grabbed his paper bag, large can of beer, and walked quickly out of the hotel and down the street. This hotel is completely unsecure and unsafe. But even more shocking is the fact that I did not receive a call or visit from management the next day to apologize for the situation or even to thank me for helping to ensure the safety of their security guard - nothing. And now, three weeks later - still no apology call, email or letter. The front desk clearly knew who I was - so did security - and the police. Nice way to take care of a Platinum Premier Guest.
It seems to me that the manager has a lot on his/her plate (priority probably being to increase security and have a new training session with all staff), but this would definitely be a case in which the manager should reach out to the guest in question (you).
This might even be a story to escalate to the national Marriott offices to make sure that the hotel follows up on the incident. Because if the manager isn't even reaching out to you, it might be a big sign of incompetence.
That is really scary! I would expect to have the hotel management doing everything to make things right for me, and Mrs Tommo would be absolutely livid that they didn't!
A friend of mine was staying in a London hotel (not Marriott) on business recently, and foolishly had not put the chain on his door, although of course no-one could enter without a key card. In the middle of the night he was awoken by a noise, and found 3 men in his room. Fortunately they were security, and the front desk had given them a key card for the wrong room to take a couple of hours break. Can you imagine what that would have been like for a woman business traveller?
The hotel in question could not have been more apologetic, and threw a shedload of points at my friend. He has just been to a central London hotel for 3 nights with his wife, EVERYTHING paid for, not just the room. That's more like it.
I automatically put the chain on or the slider bar or which ever additional interior options are available and carry a rubber door stopper to use when I have a surprise stay somewhere that has neither. None of these things will prevent a determined intruder, but nearly always these are accidental intrusions like you cited above and at least buy time and awareness.
Good recovery by the property above. I'm sure they were horrified this happened.
Nice post. Great way to handle the situation on the part of Marriott. Things are occasionally going to go wrong, the way thery're subsequently handled is key to a well-managed property.
Wow, ppmcgloth, what a terrifying experience. As a former law enforcement officer, I am appalled by the lack of security at this property. More than that, the inaction by management at the hotel is deporable. For hotel management, this should be a slam dunk, apologize profusely to the guest and comp the room. While hotel managers cannot always anticipate situations like this, they sure can control how they respond to them. I'm glad carat is on the case.
This hotel has a lot of wedding and other parties, and a few years ago someone stole a very expensive print from the men's room (the hotel figured out who, called in PD, and the perp admitted he'd been intoxicated and had been trying to figure out how to return it). Sounds as if physical security is still an issue.
This is another example of how being in an expensive or pricier hotel does not necessarily equate to better security, safer surroundings, or better follow through by management.
Glad our CMs are on the case. Let us know how this resolves.
ppmcgloth do you use Twitter? I tweeted it bc it was so scary!
Marriott hotels saw it and wanted more info. But I told them it was not me but a member of the community here. I told them I am sure if they called the hotel, they would have all of the info.
Kendra with marriott hotels via Twitter contacted me. So many people work with Marriott so I don't know how to put you in contact with her unless you have twiter.
The mods here are on it. but I'm sure bc its public now on Twitter, they are pretty concerned.
Keep us updated!
One of the reasons I travel with a handgun wherever I can. No need to look for an iron! Good work by you and nice thinking. Glad to know you supported the the safety of the security guard. Had a similar situation in Denver earlier this spring - I did NOT have my gun. However, I did go out and support the security guard - just in case this 'gentleman' became and issue. Luckily, I a man ex-cop, 6'2" and cough, cough 250lb :-)
Just to update everyone following this. I received an email yesterday and a call today from the property General Manager. He apologized for the follow-up contact not taking place due to a internal miscommunication while he was out of town. More importantly, he assured me that immediately following his learning of the incident, he immediately started staffing additional security and enforcing the keycard entry to the front doors in the evening (which is what the Residence Inn a few blocks away has done for a long time). He seemed genuine and understanding - and appreciative of my support that night during the incident. He did say this was the first time in many years they have had an incident like this, but perhaps this will serve as a wake-up for them to step it up. He did emphasize, he considers the safety of the guests and his staff his highest priority. It would be good, as the hotel itself is a nice little gem - a nice break from the normal cookie-cutter Marriott that we all have grown to love. I should also extend a call-out to their Food and Beverage Manager and front desk staff - on the night of my original arrival - I got in late. I think 1 am. They went out of their way to set me up with a couple sodas and some snacks since everything was closed. This incident also reminded me to be more aware of my security. I guess we all need a wake-up call now and then.
So sorry that this happened to you, but thank you for sharing to wake us all up to being more aware of security. I am not sure if I would have been as brave as you were with the iron, so Kudos on that call! I'm happy that Marriott reached out and that safety is a priority. As a female who travels alone, security is important.
The iron was a great idea! You could have really flattened him-literally. (Sorry couldn't resist.)
Regarding access to the hotel, so many hotels allow free entering and exiting. Very few in fact require a key to use elevator. I travel weekly for work. The only consistent thing I see is a key needed to enter lobby after 11pm.
I think you handled situation very well. Heck, the guy could have been a guest. I think some situations are sadly unavoidable. Proper response is all that's available. Im glad you got it here from the police. Im glad Marriott Insiders are assisting.