I recently completed my second stay here with my wife as we visited for three nights to attend a wedding. From start to finish, we thought it was a pretty terrible stay. It just seemed that the staff couldn't get anything right the whole time. And every time we complained about a problem, the staff made out like we were martians from another planet.
We arrived quite late in the evening, around 11pm. There was no porter outside and no one to help us with our luggage. That was really disappointing at a 5 star hotel.
Walking inside, and the lobby is very nice. It's probably the nicest thing about this hotel as it's light and airy, has a nice vista of Swanston Street and feels really classy.
When we went to check-in, there was one man at the front desk who looked a bit like dr evil. He was very cold and frosty. He processed our check-in quite efficiently, but he looked quite miserable and made us feel like we were somehow inferior, or not up to the calibre of their usual guests. I'm not quite sure why because we were in quite formal wedding attire.
The room was okay, but it looked quite dated and in need of a refresh. There were a lot of things in our room that weren't working. The lights kept flickering on and off, the light switch beside our bed didn't work, the TV remote control was covered in dust. One night, all the lights turned on without any reason which was also a bit spooky.The ipod dock is also a very cheap one with sound quality not worthy of listening to.
The bathroom looked nice, but it had a few problems and the floor isn't level!! Every time we took a shower, it leaked water all over the floor which was really a pain. The first day it happened we were really surprised. We joked that it was a bit like staying in a hostel in the third world.
The bathroom flush was very hard to use and only the half flush worked! Needless to say, in many instances, the job wasn't able to be done with only half working!
We had a nice little balcony but unfortunately it was too cold to use and the noise insulation was very poor. We were woken several times in the night by garbage trucks.
The gym was small and smelled terrible. The equipment was old and a lot of the machines - i think the shoulder press - had a grip that was falling off. This surprised me because fitness and healthy living is such an important part of the Westin brand, but clearly not at this hotel.
We had breakfast in the restaurant on two days. It was $40 each which we thought was very expensive, especially for the quality of the food. The eggs--cooked fresh to order--were really quite nice, but things like bacon, tomatoes and sausages were all watery and didn't taste very good. What's more, the hot food is placed so high on the ledge that it's almost above your head for shorter people like me. The continental selection was also very poor and definitely not as good as other hotels. Maybe the most insulting thing was that the coffee wasn't free flow. We had to pay extra for a second coffee after paying $40! I've never stayed in another hotel that does that. Service during breakfast was also very poor. It seems like they're short staffed as they seemed to run around madly, constantly forgetting things. They seemed to consider us unreasonable when we asked where our coffees were after waiting 20 minutes.
The hotel has wifi access, but it didn't work very well from our room. They told us when we called that they never have problems with their internet, but looking above, i see lots of people have complained, so i wonder why they tried to claim it was a problem with our TWO computers when we tried to connect! We never did manage to get it to work, so we used our iphones as hotspots.
When we checked out, the check-out agent was again very cold. There were two erroneous mini bar charges which we were quite miffed about as our friends who were also staying at the hotel had the same problem. We were wondering if there's some thought of collusion happening? For the record, our friends who were Starwood Platinum, said that the benefits they got at the Westin Melbourne were the worst they'd ever had at any Westin hotel, so we concluded that it wasn't just us as non-members who had a bad experience.
All in all, we felt like the whole hotel has a serious attitude problem. It seems the staff here think the hotel is a lot better than what it is. The only thing working in its favour is the location is really great for sightseeing and shopping. But at this price, it was a really disappointing experience. We were really disappointed that they seem to treat customers like total idiots and I just get the feeling it's a style which comes right from the top.