I'm at a pretty upscale Marriott this week. It's a rewards category 7. I'm on the 4th floor, and the floor plan of the hotel has my door facing an interior atrium. I can look down two or three floors into a large dining room.
Last night in this dining room was a large party. They weren't rowdy kids -- it was a professional banquet attended by adults. However, with a couple hundred of them carrying on normal conversations, plus the usual clinking of dishes and silverware and restaurant clatter, and a large open area with hard walls, it was quite noisy. Furthermore, the door in my room has a noticeable gap between the bottom of the door and the floor. Long story short: it was rather noisy last night when I was trying to get to sleep.
I noticed on the phone that there was an "at your service" button. I'm usually easy to please, so for the first time I thought I'd give that a ring to see if there was anything I could do about my situation. The woman who answered was quite mean spirited from the start, and talked down to me, telling me that they ARE a hotel, and they DO hold events, as if I was the idiot for even thinking otherwise. I tried to tell her that I stay at lots of hotels throughout the year, and some of them undoubtedly hold events, but this was the noisiest one I had ever been in, but she made it clear that the conversation was over and that I should stop bothering her. For the record, I had been polite up to that point. So what is the purpose of the "at your service" button on the phone? Is it a dial-a-joke? In the end, I wound up getting out of bed, and I rolled up a towel and put it under the crack under the door. I sure hope they don't have any more parties this week!
I believe this situation was made worse by the room I was given. When I checked in, no acknowledgement of my gold status was provided, and I was told that I was being given an good room. I asked for an upgraded room, and at first she tried to tell me that it was upgraded, but then she backed off on that. It's not on the concierge lounge, and it's pretty easy to tell that there is absolutely nothing special about my room -- it's in the rear and definitely at the lower level of what they have to offer, and with the open exposure to the banquet room, they have to be aware of the noise problem. But beyond this experience, I haven't received a room upgrade since October, and many places have looked me in the eye that me none was available when I know that they were available, so, like the "at your service" button, I really wonder why Marriott advertises that gold status will get you a room upgrade. Yes, I know that they caveat it with "subject to availability," but if it's so rarely available as to be nonexistant, then it's simply false advertising.
I guess if you frequent one business long enough eventually you'll have a bad experience, so I'll just chalk this up to a singular event, but the next time I come to this city (which is every month or two), I'll definitely stay somewhere else.
You got the worst AYS person ever! This is a teaching moment for the hotel and I hope that you've told them all this, either in an email or by phone. Assuming the person was a real AYS Associate, it's my understanding that they are supposed to answer your call promptly and courteously, deal with the issue as best they can or tell you that they will call you back. Their job is not to be rude or discourteous, as was the case here.
I'd recommend that you follow up and let the hotel make amends--this is bad lodging practice on their part and they need to be aware so that it does not happen in the future.
As for room upgrades that's very problematic, even for Platinum Elites. As the economy rebounds people are traveling more and some are actually paying more (my experience is that the bargains are few and far between), so the competition for rooms is heating up. Concierge level rooms as an upgrade is rare these days. Access to the lounge remains a nice perk.
Do you have high floor noted on your profile? That might help in a pinch.
Please post if you hear back from them.
dw, what exactly did you expect AYS to do to solve your problem? Room change, ask the crowd to tone it down? I think you solved your own problem with the least amount of effort and most amount of success. But, definitely no need for the attitude by the hotel person. Which hotel did this happen at?
By the description it sounds like the Marriott Long Wharf. I attended many a function there during my working days. The arrangement is not the best for the rooms, as they pretty much all face out to the atrium and the open floor look down to the lobby.
No need for insensitivity on the part of the associate no matter what the circumstance. At least they could be cordial.
Hi TEF, I also stayed at the Renaissance Waverly just north of Atlanta and it was the same design. Fortunately, we didn't have the issue with the gap under the door. I'm sure that is annoying. I'm just not sure what the hotel can do about the noise short of a room change. With a smile on their face and in their voice, of course!
I honestly didn't know what I expected when I called, but I was hoping the whoever I talked to, who is nominally responsible for the hotel and is in the businesses of helping customers, would have an idea. I won't take it up with the manager at this point. Last night I was so stunned that I thought it would be better if I just chilled before doing anything that I might regret (plus I really did want to go to sleep). After reflecting on it, I'm just as upset, but I don't think at this point it would do any good for me to call anybody. I don't want a credit or points or anything free or anything like that - I just wanted a good night's sleep. I truly don't like confrontation or complaining. But I am surprised that they tolerate such rude employees - I would have thought that they would have given their employees a bit of training or at least told them to be nice to people, including customers. I'll just vote with my wallet the next time I'm here and stay somewhere else. And never again will I press the "at your service" button.
Gold, Platinum, Platinum Premier, Paper Mache or Aluminum, Cat 1, Cat 7, or an upscale treehouse at the Biltmore.......your status should not matter when expecting the very basics of customer service.
A simple acknowledgement of your concern, and a polite, "Let me see what I can do about it for you, and I will contact you back" should have been the minimum response from any customer service associate.
Believe me, I am more fired up about this than you appear to be, and I commend you on you low level "tone" at this point.
I would however, recommend you do not sweep this under the rug, and pursue an ameniable remedy with the management at the hotel, letting the manager know, that you have (going out on a limb here - but sue me if you disagree), the entire Insider Community in your corner.
We will get pitchforks if needed and assemble at your desire.
Your experience with AYS is rare but unforunate--I agree that it needs to be pursued with someone at the hotel so that the Associate gets the message, and learns that customer service makes Marriott a good place to stay.
No reasonable manager is going to ignore your request for redress and will offer an apology if not compensation. If more training is the answer then training needs to be done, regardless of your Elite status, since you are first and foremost a customer!
I was wondering if the space between the door and the floor was some fire code thing? Not that it matters if you can't sleep, but did you ask?