Before I begin, I'd like to explain that I work at a major hotel chain as a Quality Manager and have over 20 years of hotel experience under my belt.
The owners and operators of the Kronegade Inn did not know this when I visited saint Croix and stayed in their property.
Also, I chose this place simply because the town of Cristiansted was absolutelly packed due to the Ironman 70.3 triathlon being held there on May 6th, 2007, which I participated in as a last minute decision.
After looking in the Internet for a place to stay and calling several places to see if they could book a room for me, I ended up calling the Kronegade Inn (almost at the end of my list) and spoke to Anne, whom confirmed to me that the $ 80.00 room rate posted on the site was available and confirmed my room after I only gave her the numbers of my credit card, but not the expiration date. I asked if I needed a confirmation number but she said there was no need to.
A day before my arrival on Thursday the 3rd, I called Anne again at the property and she confirmed that the reservation was in order and that all was OK. I let her know that my flight would be arriving to the island at about 1:30 PM. Again, Anne mentioned to me that everything was OK.
I was picked up with my roomate partner by a friend and transported to the Inn. First impresison was, "OK, this is what $ 80.00 a night gets me". This is not a luxury resort, and it is at the end of King Street, about five blocks from the race venue. Not impressive, and I even had difficulty finding the entrance to what appears to be a converted home, with an extension made to it.
After finding the reception I rang the bell to be allowed in and was greeted by Anne, whom also appeared to be the housekeeper. We entered the reception area and she proceeded to check me in.
First of all, please remember to NEVER hand your credit card to a clerk without first asking and confirming your room rate. Anne just asked for my card, and proceeded to charge me, even before asking me to fill out any registration card, for the entire stay.
Once she printed out the slip for me to sign, I noticed that she had charged my over 140.00 per night. She stated that there was a tax charge and the fact that my room mate's partner was staying with us, a $ 25.00 charge for an extra adult. Problem is, the math didn't add up. I proceeded to ask her about the $ 80.00 rate, and she stated that the rate in the Internet was wrong, and it had gone up.
I asked her if she remembered that I had called her and that she had confirmed this rate, and she said that she didn't remember. this is when I asked about the tax charge, and she mentioned at the beginning that it was 4%, then, when Mr.s Hurchell Greenaway, the owner, entered the reception to speak to me, informed me that the tax for the stay was 8 %!
He then began to try to convince me to stay, when I asked to leave and cancel my reservation, and offered to reduce the rate. Here he tried to work around the numbers without a calculator in order to charge me the difference of the quoted price, that he kept making mathematical mistakes that I corrected. I had to ask to a calculator and paper to show him exactly how much he would have to reinmburse me, since they had charged the full amount of my stay.
Mr. Greenaway proceeded to tell me that he would pay me in cash for the difference, but would have to charge me the 5 % credit card charge the company charges him for using their services, since he couldn't give me a credit on the card, since he did not have that option. However, he kept making mathematical calculations without the calculator, giving himself the benefit of 'rounding the numbers' for the credit.
Nevertheless, this would be the highlight of my stay at the Inn. With no other option for me to stay at another place, we ended up staying in a mostly comfortable and reasonable two-bedroom room, with a kitchenette and a shopping mart close by, which allowed us to cook our own meals and enjoy breakfast sans leaving the room.
Although the place was very run down, I can attest that cleanliness was a factor, no cockroaches were found, and mosquitoes were never a problem (common in the Islands).
Although I was holding a room until Monday, I had a thought of leaving Sunday night and Anner reminded me that there would be no refunds for leaving early, so I perished that thought immediatelly.
DO NOT STAY AT THIS PROPERTY unless you are looking for a hassle and a run down place. This is a last ditch room that I found, and would NEVER stay there again. Mostly, the rooms were OK, but the conniving approach to management by Mr. Greenaway and Anne taught me NEVER to trust anyone with your Credit Card before confirming your room rate ahead of time and the policies (written or in thsi case, verbal) concerning the room stay.
I can say that Carlos at the Jiffy Mini Mart was an awesome person, and will visit him next year!
There were several real good properties that were reasonable near the town, such as the Hotel on the Cay, and the King Christian, of which we will make sure we book ahead of time for next year's Ironman 70.3 race.
- Also Known As:
- Kronegade Inn St. Croix/Christiansted, U.S. Virgin Islands