I originally intended to stay at Holiday Inn but Equatorial came recommended by LP, so I thought I would give a try. What a mistake. My chain of misfortune with this hotel started with an email to them before the trip: before I made a reservation with Equatorial, I sent them an email, asking whether they provide any paid transfer service between the central bus station and the hotel. My first email got sucked into a black hole. Then, I went ahead and made a reservation anyway, and asked for a second time about the transfer. This time, they answered and they told me no. Fine, but it's really unusual for a 5-star hotel not to offer paid transfer.
I arrived at the hotel. The grand lobby and the smiling staff behind the counter greeted me. The room was big and comfortable, although somewhat dated in terms of its decor. I noticed a breakfast menu hung on the door handle, and it said that it had to be filled out and hung on the door handle facing the corridor if I was to order breakfast. I did just that, and after a day wandering around town, nobody came to collect that filled-in breakfast menu. I called room service and asked them if I could order over the phone. They said OK, so I just read out my choices and told them when specifically I wanted the meal delivered. The next morning, the food came late and what came was horribly wrong. I called the room service again to tell them that the food came was wrong. I was polite all along - I mean, I understand that things happen, although such mistakes aren't really what one expects from a self-proclaimed 5-star establishment - but the other end of the phone kept saying that 'oh, sir, but what YOU ordered was this, what YOU ordered was that'. Seriously? So I just suddenly had this change of mind and so called you up, made up a lie so that you would give me another set of breakfast?? In the end, the manager offered a change and the breakfast was offered to me free of charge.
Going back to the night before, the occupants of the adjacent room was playing loud music at 1 am. The adjacent room happened to be an Equator Club room, so the occupants could be some VIPs, I don't know. Anyway, it doesn't change the fact that it was 1 am and people needed to sleep. I knocked on their door, signalling to them that the volume needed to be turned down. And they did - for a while. At 3.30 am, I was woken up again by the loud music. I called front desk and asked them to do something about it. The lady on the line said to me, 'Sorry sir, that's an Equator Club room. You have to call the Club counter to handle that.' I was like, 'Fine. Can you transfer me to that counter, please?' She said, 'Oh, but they have closed already.' WHAT?! So you ain't gonna do anything about it? She said, 'Well sir, you need a special key to access that room.' Then I really lost it - it's not my problem that the room can't be accessed without a special key! I was a customer as much as those [--] playing loud music after midnight! Boy, the girl on the phone was obviously petrified after I'd shouted on the phone. The manager then took over and said that he would shut my neighbours up. So the music was gone for a while. At 6 am, they switched back to heavy metal.
I have great respect for the manager who managed the situation, but he doesn't run the whole hotel, and the quality of the staff leaves a hell lot to be desired. And I stop short giving this hotel 1 out of 5 truly because of the professionalism of the manager, the location of the hotel and the general cleanliness. Yet, seriously, if you market yourself as a 5-star hotel, remind yourself that it's not just about the building and facilities. I doubt if I will stay at another Equatorial: it has made me hot to the point of boiling.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Thank you for your kind review.
After reading your review thoroughly, firstly I would like to sincerely apologize for the shortfalls that you have experienced during your stay with us.
I am concerned that your initial e-mail enquiring of the transfer from Melaka Sentral did not seem to reach us. Nevertheless, I believed that the subsequent e-mails had been responded to by our Concierge Team. It is true that we do not provide transfer to and from Melaka Sentral however arrangements certainly can be made with the taxi drivers to pick guests from the station with the prevailing local taxi charges.
It is very disappointing to hear of the poor coordination of our F&B Team in failing to organize your breakfast request that it has gone wrong all the way from the time you’ve placed the breakfast order right up to the time of delivery. Our standard operating procedure of collecting breakfast card are after 11pm, nevertheless we could have been more vigilant and meticulous to collect any breakfast card that is placed on the door handle at anytime apart from our usual anticipated standard time. Nonetheless it certainly was unacceptable for our staff to have an attitude of second guessing our guests. My sincerest apologies for the appalling experience with room service.
I am equally disappointed to read your comments on our staff response to your call on the loud music played at the wee hours of the night. This certainly is an unacceptable behavior and not the usual standard that we have instilled to all our staff.
I fully understand your frustrations over the entire situation and the lack of attention on our side and I sincerely apologized. You can be assured I have taken your views and comments seriously with a sincere intention to take corrective actions and improve further.
I do hope that the isolated encountered will not deter you from returning and you have my assurance of an improved service level in future.
Once again, thank you for your kind review and we look forward to welcome you back to Hotel Equatorial Melaka.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.