Went by reviews and booked in to the Langham recently. The room was spaciously appointed and the bathroom luxurious; loved the shower. Housekeeping excellent.
However, for a 5 star hotel, the room came with a tiny old TV and rickety kettle. Complementary coffee was limited to decaf, tea range was just okay. After checking out we get an additional bill for $12.71 towards 'minibar discrepancies' even though we didn't touch anything from that ridiculously priced collection. This bill for which my credit card has been automatically charged does not name the item we're supposed to have 'discrepantly' consumed. I'm guessing it's for the tiny tetra pack of milk which I'd assumed went with the free coffee/tea paraphernalia. This item, as far as I can remember was not on the minibar price list.
The mattress was by no means of a 5 star standard and had me tossing and turning trying to get comfortable.
The airconditioning was not consistently cool; felt as if it ran on fan for long periods of time in between short bursts of cooling. Again, didn't help sleep at all.
We'd booked a city view room but was given a grand 'upgrade' to a water view on the second floor from where you had to peer over broken buildings and backyards to view the water. I don't believe that was meant to upgrade our experience and felt more like a downgrade.
What had us completely gobsmacked was that during check in the entire booking amount for the complete length of stay was charged from the credit card. In addition to this the credit card was also charged with a deposit in advance. So the entire stay was paid for before we'd even set foot in the room. Made us look like we were likely to run without paying or steal the tiny TV, perhaps? We only found this out when we were out shopping and used the atm. On inquiry the reception staff told me this treatment was reserved for 'certain bookings'.It would've been less of a shock if this piece of information was available at these 'certain' booking sites. We've been in other 5 star hotels in the US, Dubai, and Singapore and this is the first time ever that we've encountered such a policy.
This completely soured the Langham experience for us. The trip had been my daughter's New Year gift for me--two days in a "nice hotel for Mum" was what she'd had in mind and saved up for. Instead her card got wiped out to almost $10 and we wouldn't have known about that had we not stopped at an atm. This policy that appears to be aimed at a 'select clientele' apparently was the one thing that ruined our stay. Everything else such as the mattress, kettle, and AC that I've mentioned becomes a problem in that they are not commensurate with the prices attached or a 5 star rating.
The hotel's good where decor, dining, service, and housekeeping are concerned. Our room was spacious and we liked that. Service is meticulous and the staff extremely helpful. Some staff at reception somehow appear less than helpful. Smiles alone don't help unless they are backed by forthright policies.
If you're checking into The Langham just make sure what policy they have in store for you. Somehow I don't think this total payment plus deposit in advance policy applies to all clientele but just a 'certain' kind. Also, if you're given a water view room, ensure its on the top floors.
Water view rooms on the lower floors overlook run down buildings and backyards over which you have t...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
January 16, 2013
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Thank you for your review of your stay with us at The Langham, Sydney.
I was most dissappointed to read that you felt that you have been treated differently to other guests in our hotel. This is certainly not something that we ever intend to do and for that please accept our apologies.
I would like to personally follow up with you to discuss your experience at our hotel. If I could trouble you to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the hotel on (02) 9256 2222.
I look forward to speaking with you at your earliest.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.