I would have given this hotel a 5 star review, but because of an issue encountered with their front desk staff and the restaurant, I had to hold back.
First, the good points: We booked a premium, river view room. The room was spotless, in great condition, well decorated. The bed was very comfortable (Not hard like other Asian hotel beds). The bathrooms were also spacious, and the shower with a view was a nice touch. Electronic toilet with all the bells and whistles.
Great in room tea and coffee selection. They had a french press with real coffee, not the ubiquitous Nescafe you find all over Asia. This scored big points for me.
Location is good (although not great). 20 min walk to the Bund, 10 minute walk to the Old Shanghai area where you can find restaurants, coffee and tea places, shops and fast food places.
Proximity to metro: about 20 minute walk (not so great in the winter).
Bad points: Some issues with the heating system. Had to crank it up to 26.5 to get any sort of heating. But after a few hours, the room was warm enough.
Biggest problem: Inconsistencies with front desk and restaurant. On the day we arrived, we asked the front desk staff what the cost was for breakfast. We were told it was 200 RMB for 2 people + 15%. That works out to be 115 RMB per person, which was reasonable.
Next morning we go for breakfast, and at first, we were not so impressed with the choices. Very few Chinese breakfast options, and mostly just bread and fruit. For eggs, we had to ask the waitress.
Bill arrives and it's 430RMB. We signed off and said we'll deal with this later (perhaps that was our mistake - should have dealt with it then).
Upon checkout, I asked the front desk staff if there was a mistake with the breakfast bill. I said that I asked the price, and was told it would be 200 RMB + 15%. Turns out, I was charged the "Rack Rate"... Which comes out to be 35 USD/person... a ridiculous amount for a buffet breakfast.
The front desk told me that if I wanted the 200RMB price, I had to ask for it! Which I find completely absurd. When we asked what the price was initially, we were not told it was a special, nor that we had to "reserve the special". After several minutes of back and forth with the manager, who then called the restaurant manager, they corrected the amount and charged us the 200+15%.
Having worked in the service industry myself for many years, I believe this hotel's management needs to take a serious look at how the front desk and restaurant work together. I get that they may be separate businesses, but more coordination is needed.
This fiasco really soured the experience, which would have been stellar.
I do thank the hotel for taking corrective measure to fix our bill, but considering the situation, and the fact that they kept insisting it was our fault for not "booking the special price", they should have comped the whole amount as a gesture of good faith.
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