I recently stayed at the Boston Copley Place for three nights and had a few thoughts, some negative, some positive. I had to book through a conference, and called the hotel to try to get it to show up in my upcoming reservations. They were very unhelpful (in fact they said they couldn't do so) until I finally wrote to the assistant general manager who did so, but at the same time said she 'could not do this for any further reservations'. Since I wasn't planning any future reservations I thought the statement and tone was odd. But it did get put on my reservations, which was good since I had to give a talk even before official check-in.
By contrast, the desk associate who checked me in early could not have been nicer and more welcoming in terms of Platinum membership.
The Executive Lounge is closed for food on weekends. They gave me two coupons for $10 at Starbucks but that was not at all the same, especially since M-F they not only have breakfast but hors d'oeuvres and desserts at night.
One interesting feature is that the Exec Lounge is completely blocked off from those not staying on Exec Lounge floors -- you need to insert your key card into the elevator, and there are two different banks of elevators. One goes to 1-27 (non-elite), and the other to 28 and above (the Executive Lounge is on 28). There was a lot to be said for this setup, as you didn't have to sign in or anything. But when I took two colleagues to breakfast one morning, we all had to go all the way down to change elevators to go up to 28 again.
The rooms are fairly small but the views of my beloved Boston are spectacular from the higher floors.
My only worry now is that my points/nights haven't been posted yet (as seems to happen frequently to me) even though I checked out Sunday morning.
Since dining venues were reduced to Champions and Starbucks, the Copley seems less a full-service hotel that it once was. The new Fact Sheet mentions a Connexion Lounge, where is it, what's it like and how's the food?
I agree, TJC. I made several visits to Legal Seafoods at the far end of the hotel/Hynes Convention Center complex, because Champions was far too loud (and limited in its food selection). Then Saturday night I went with other conference members to a spectacular Italian dinner in the North End at Il Fiore, which consisted of antipasti, gombolotti alla Vodka and lots of wine. It was best North End Italian!!!
I think the Connexion lounge was just a place with chairs and sofas near Champions. I noticed every day that lots of people were congregated there, but I didn't sea any food or other inducements to check further. I suspect people were mostly using it to watch the large screen TV for sports or the hotel's wireless connections in free spots.
I was at the Boston Copley Place last week. I noticed that there was a convention there -- maybe you were part of that?
I stayed on the 28th floor, which was the same level as the executive lounge. Many views were spectacular, but I was on the backside (away from the Charles River), so the view from my room was nice, but not spectacular. I thought the executive lounge was good, but not superb. My room was also average size and otherwise nothing special.
My experience with the front desk was a little different than yours. No upgrades available for me, which was not a big deal. Then there was a minor mix-up on my understanding of the room, but when I asked them about it they were uppity and did not seem to want to listen to me. I had to explain it to them three times before they dropped their attitude and stopped to actually listen to what I was saying, and then they understood. Again, not a big deal and it all worked out in the end. Each night I walked by the front desk, there were several people in line waiting to check in, and one evening there were at least a half-dozen. I'm not sure how others feel about this, but after I've been traveling all day, waiting in line to check in at the airport, waiting for my bag, waiting for the rental car, or the subway, the last thing I want to do is to wait to check in. This to me is inexcusable since it is easily solved by placing the customer first and hiring a few more people for the front desk.
As far as food goes, there isn't much in the hotel, but the Back Bay area is filled with great choices, many of which are within walking distance. There is indeed a lot of foot traffic by the lounge, because the Copley Place mall is contiguous with the hotel, and you have a lot of mall traffic and people walking from the T station through the walkways. I did eat in Champions, and I thought the food wasn't bad for bar food.
On the positive side, the fitness center was very nice (one of the best I've seen), and it's very easy to go for a run along the Charles River from the hotel. It's also very close to the Back Bay T and rail center.
The last time I was in this hotel was in 1998, and I wasn't staying in it.
But what I do have to add to the conversation is that I did book a convention in Atlanta this May. I put my Marriott rewards number in the comments, and it did show up in my upcoming reservations, so I don't think this is something difficult for them.
I'm told only one concierge lounge is open on the weekends in Canada and the US, and that's at the Marriott River Cree resort outside Edmonton. However, it is attached to a casino and often torrents of tobacco smoke come from the casino to the main lobby and out the front door. By "torrents" I mean the strongest breeze I've ever felt coming out of a hotel.
At the Los Angeles Airport Marriott, the air sucks in from themain entrance and blows the tobacco smoke from outside into the Champs lounge (This LAX hotel is the only Champs lounge I've been in - unimpressed)