What a disappointment. We found ourselves stranded in East London when our South Africa coastal trip was cancelled by a horrendous storm, and relied on a guidebook recommendation to quickly find a respite from the rain. It boasts its 4-star rating at the front desk, but any basis for that rating is nowhere to be found in either the accommodations or the staff. It has a picturesque setting overlooking the river, but all of the one-bedroom rooms have a view of only a garden. The rooms are worn out—lots of water spots on the ceiling from inadequate roofing and water runoff, empty refrigerators that look dingy in their cabinet, no safe in the rooms, and generally the feel of a tired hotel.
A sign at the front desk says that renovation is underway, but it won’t cure the biggest problem—poor service and attitude. When we checked in, there was none of the smiles and warmth we encountered in each of the other accommodations during our 2-week trip to South Africa. No orientation, no information about meal times, no booklet in the room with information about the hotel, area, etc. Any information we wanted we had to ask directly.
Food service was no better. The food itself was unimaginative, and the service was slow. The entire wait staff performed as if they were trainees with no sense of confidence. Their understanding of English was poor, resulting in not bringing the correct food as ordered.
In short, no one seemed to want to be working there, let along enjoying working there.
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