I would suggest that you sleep in a field before choosing to stay in this hotel. We turned up at 13.40 to be told that our room wasn't ready. Fine - as former workers in the hospitality industry, we realise that 14.00 is the standard check in time.
But there is no excuse for having surly, uncommunicative and hostile staff on the front desk. We said that we would go and sit quietly in the corner. The response? A shrug. We asked after 14.00 if our room was ready to be greeted with more shrugs. We asked to see the duty manager and we were stonewalled. Eventually one staff member arrived to save the day. She is called Gertrude and is the Prokard Ambassador and by the looks of things the only staff member to have received customer facing training.
She managed to get us an upgraded room sorted but by them it was too late. If we hadn't already paid for the room we would have walked across the road to the City Lodge Hotel. My friend is a former Prokard member and he let his membership lapse this year as he didn't think he would be travelling much in South Africa. Good decision - he will never stay in a Protea hotel again and neither will I. I have never been made to feel more unwelcome in a hotel.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Protea Hotel Willow Lake provides a serene environment that blends in with nature and the surrounds. The hotel comprises of modern and luxurious rooms, including 2 Paraplegic bedrooms; all of which are equipped with air conditioners, selective satellite television channels, tea & coffee making facilities, executive desk with multi adapter plug points, electronic safes and touch dial telephones. Each room has an open plan shower (no baths), with privacy curtains in all twin rooms. Guests are spoilt for choice when it comes to winding down. Choose to relax by the pool or sip on cocktails in the bar and lounge area. Why not visit the exclusive patio, have a bite to eat and experience a breathtaking view of the Bloemfontein Zoo Elephant. ... more less
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