A stay full of ups and downs.. or rather, downs and ups.
Let me start with the booking. The staff that handled my bookings were very good. I missed the ‘stay for 3 night pay for 2’ promo, and booked two rooms using the ordinary rate. I also wanted to change one room for a better one, a studio. I explained the situation to her, and she did it for me, in a way made the hotel ‘lose’ extra money from the 3rd night but really made the customer, in this case me, smiling from ear to ear.
That was up.
The down came from the airport pickup, the e 280 I ordered. Yes we met the guy holding the sign, who spoke minimal English and he asked ‘where is the other one?’ As I booked two rooms. Well the other one is stuck in the random inspection, so he’s about 5-10 minutes behind. He responded, ‘ok ok wait outside’ with a brief pointing gesture. Ok the pointing thing was VERY brief and by saying ‘wait outside’ I was confusingly deciding between the lower exit (for taxi queues) or the farther lower exit (for buses/vans). Well I waited at the first one, craning my neck for a e 280, after about 5-10 chilling minutes I then went back in, and found ‘the other guest’. That’s odd, he’s not with the sign guy. Ok let us wait at the second exit then, the one with the vans/buses. After another 5-10 cold minutes, we went back in to call PuLi to locate our guy and he is there, in the same spot as before, still holding the sign. So ‘wait outside’ with the brief pointing sign means ‘wait over there, away from these lines of people exiting customs and people with signs’. Ok, small language problem, he then escorted us to the e 280, which was UPSTAIRS, at the big exit. When we enter, 2 water bottles and the shanghai daily greeted us. When we arrive at the Puli, two women with black leather folders were waiting at the front door, escorting us to our rooms for a ‘check in inside your room’. Nice touch!
It was up again.
I then asked the concierge for a sim card, which he bought for me. It was 150, I gave him a 20 Yuan tip, and the card had 50 yuans of credit in it. It was not a ‘special’ number as I asked for a ‘normal’ number. Was I being cheated a few Yuans? I didn’t know, and frankly didn’t care. Daimon was the best guy at the hotel, enthusiastic about the job, a bit humorous and of course, helpful. I frowned when he asked ‘your room supposed to have a wireless phone, like a mobile phone, where is it?’
Huh? A what? Where? I dunno!
He then called a staff on the phone and spoke Chinese while he obviously looked everywhere for it. It was never found. More on this later. My Chinese sim card was ok, then I brushed my teeth and washed my face, and the sink was stuck. It was one of those minimalistic, zen type sinks and I frantically searched for a hidden button, to ‘dispose’ the water. I even shook the thing. Nothing happened. The confirmation email said 'in this 50M2 junior suite you can entertain guests without sacrificing the privacy of your bedroom' and 'you have 3 tv's, in the bathroom, bedroom and living room'. There were NEVER a living room, and a 3rd tv. Yes you guessed it, it was down again.
Funny thing though, the next afternoon I asked a staff about the sink and the phone and he told me to PUSH DOWN the shiny metallic thing at the center and it will rise up, thus allowing water to come down. And the phone is only for suites. Ok I think you should seriously somehow give a hint on the metal-pushing thing as not all your guests are young, hip and creative folks and sometimes they arrive at their room at night, tired, and just want to brush their teeth and go straight to bed. And the guest service directory should mention ‘phone for suites only’.
I tried the spa, and it was lovely. People should know that this is not one of those ‘happy ending’ spa ok, this is a legit, professional and excellent spa. You can come with confidence. Linda was a good therapist. But the worst thing that happened at this hotel was Jing’an for dinner.
I especially came to try the foie gras+meat burger (turns out they only have it for lunch), and after a nice French sounding gentlemen greeted and sat me down I was put to wait 17 minutes not for the FOOD, nor DRINKS, but for the WAITER to come so I can order food or drinks! Yes I was practically ignored for 17 long minutes with nothing, no bread, no water, nothing. I did not exist. And no, it was not a busy night as there were only 3 other tables. I sat up, left, hurt, hungry and dined at the long bar instead. Dined at a bar. Come on now! Be realistic here. I have eaten in places that see themselves as ‘luxurious’, ‘expensive’, trendy, 2 michelin stars in Asia, Europe and the US and never ever once I was ignored more than 5 minutes after sitting down. Be Realistic and put this into perspective. Jing’An is NOT one of those places. The décor is nothing ‘luxurious’, the food selection is nothing ‘spectacular’, the view is, well to a small park and the service is ahem, non existent. So why do you have to act like one? You’re no Jules Verne or louis XV for crying out loud! Even faux Nobu is better than you.
To sum it up: Room ok, nice touch with the blinds, nespresso, nice size but only 5m2 bigger than the smallest PuLi room. Staff great, some don’t speak English fluently, Long Bar is ‘ok’. Stay 3 night pay for 2 is great, although after this I won’t mind spending 500 Dollars for the Park Hyatt. Jing ‘An well, no comment, breakfast was ok, 7/10.
Certainly I was expecting more than this.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.