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“Stay ruined by terrible service” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Stone Soup Inn

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Stone Soup Inn
2.5 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   1304 N. Central Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46202   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 21 Indianapolis B&B and Inns
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Stay ruined by terrible service”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2012 via mobile

I booked online to stay at the Stone Soup Inn for an overnight business trip. I made the reservation 15 days before the trip and paid the reservation in full on my credit card, which was charged.

I received two confirmation emails from hotels.com; the second specifically saying I didn't have to call.

When I arrived at the inn late in the evening after a long day of travel and meetings, they did not have my reservation.

I forwarded them my booking and payment confirmation but was advised that would not suffice. They needed something more official from hotels.com.

When I suggested they take it up with hotels.com, I was advised that hotels.com wouldn't provide them the info they needed, that I needed to call them.

It was after 10 pm; I was exhausted and I needed to be up early the next morning. I mentioned this to them.

Yet no heed was given to this. The owner advised me that I needed to either pay again or leave, as they had no contract with hotels.com.

I didn't want to pay twice for a room, particularly as I had no assurance I'd get a refund of the original fee I'd paid.

Over two hours later, after numerous calls to hotels.com, I finally got a live person at hotels.com to cancel the reservation, and I paid direct for the room.

What severely disappointed me is as follows:

1. The manager took absolutely no responsibility for the situation. She pointed the finger at hotels.com, but failed to recognize that her business is still listed on that site and she ought to be at least partly if not fully responsible for bookings that come in that way.

2. I was treated unacceptably poorly as a prospective guest with a paid receipt. She referred to me as a stranger who had walked in off the street, and that her innkeeper needed to get to sleep to service other guests. I was a customer too -- I had paid for a room and wanted to stay at their establishment -- she should have recognized that. But instead of taking on the problem and letting me get to a room, I was left with no choice except to get on the phone with the booking agent to address the problem before she would let me stay. It was not until after midnight I finally got a hold of someone at hotels.com who would cancel and refund the reservation. The owner then charged me a higher rate for the room instead of the rate I had originally booked at!!! (At that point, I had no more energy left to argue.)

3. I never got an apology or any sympathy for my situation. I asked if she understood my point of view, and she responded that she would not be "manipulated" and that she would rather have me just leave. (I'd paid for the room! I had to be up early! It was after midnight! Where would I go!) It was absolutely audacious and unbelievable for someone in the service industry to be so indifferent and cursory to notions of basic courtesy and understanding of my needs at that point.

This all took **over 2 hours**; I only then got to a room **after midnight** and 5 hours sleep before having to be up again.

The room I finally got was ok, even nice; but my time there was completely ruined by the above.

From this, I have learned I will always need to call a hotel directly to confirm a reservation directly, even when my confirmation says I do not need to.

But would you really want to stay at a place that can treat a guest this way?

The poor quality of the evening's stay and sleep affected the next 2 days, and the feeling of being treated terribly also lingered.

I too was lured by the glowingly positive reviews, only to receive the worst service experience I've ever had.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheVillaInn, General Manager at Stone Soup Inn, responded to this review, September 28, 2012
I would like to take a moment to address your concerns about your stay with us. Unfortunately when guests book through a third party site we are not able to receive information on their behalf until they initiate the call to the third party booking site.
Unfortunately, hotels.com did not forward your reservation onto us to reserve it in our system. When guests book on third party sites they do take a risk that the property may not receive their reservation. We do not have a contract with this company. They actually purchased us from a third party site. Therefore we do not have a way of contacting them since we are not under any contractual obligation.
I was told by the staff on numerous occasions that they offered to hold your credit card and not charge it until this could be sorted out in the morning. It was also brought to my attention that the owner did get out of bed and come immediately to the property where she was on the phone with hotels.com for the same amount of time. I feel that the property did everything in their power to help you with this reservation.
The Manager did everything in her power to correct the situation. It is not a pleasurable experience for us when we receive guests at our property without a reservation.
We do not try to appear like we are treating our guests like strangers. However, we do take security very seriously at all of our properties. This is to protect our guests and our staff members. We do not just let anyone check-in without proper identification and a reservation. This protects all parties involved.
The innkeeper and the owner did apologize for the inconvenience. After reviewing your reservation I did see that they did a complimentary upgrade for you. The innkeeper also apologized during breakfast the next day while she was making your coffee to your specifications.
I am sorry you had this awful experience with the third party booking site. We also recommend that you check with the hotel after booking a reservation. Thank you and have a wonderful day.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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63 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Missoula, Montana
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2012

This was a lovely place to stay-- the room was very large and comfortable, and it was within easy driving distance of great food which is a must for me. It is a no-frills type of place; the breakfast was a continental type of breakfast and I had a room with a shared bathroom, but very nice overall. I would go back!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cleveland, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2012

I decided to do something a little different on a recent two night trip to Indianapolis and stay here rather than at one of the typical chains. I was solo, and so opted for the SW Loft. Overall, the stay was very pleasant and I would not hesitate to stay here again. The young lady who served as innkeeper was new to the job, and not so knowledgeable about the area or the property as one might hope, yet she was very polite, responsive and eager to please. She doesn't join the guests to chat at breakfast, as I've experienced at other B&B's.

The property was very clean and generally very comfortable. There are plenty of nooks and crannies to settle down on a comfortable chair and read a book. There is a small balcony with a table and two plastic chairs where you can sit and enjoy the surroundings if so inclined. Parking is sufficient, but if you think you might need to be up and out early be careful where you put your car. I thought I was lucky to get one of the "normal" spots (you can also park alongside the curving drive) but when I went to leave at 7:15 on a Friday morning found that I had been blocked in. There is a small pantry on the second floor that was well stocked with snacks and soft drinks when I arrived, though by the time I left two days later it had not been restocked and was pretty bare. WiFi reception in my room was excellent.

Breakfast was bagels, hard boiled eggs and the like on Friday. On Saturday it was a tasty sit down service with pancakes, bacon and fresh fruit. We were served by a young man who, like the innkeeper, seemed to be very new at the game but very eager to please. There is only space for eight at the table, and two couples had to leave and presumably return later because there was no room for them.

The location was great. It's about a ten to fifteen minute walk to Massachusetts Avenue, which appears to be the happening downtown spot in Indy. It is only a short drive to the Motor Speedway. The area itself is quiet and picturesque.

The SW loft is not someplace I'd be anxious to stay again, and would definitely pay a bit more and opt for a different room next time. I'm going to devote a little time to discussing this because I could find nothing about this particular loft when I researched the Stone Soup before booking. The SW loft was impeccably clean but not necessarily comfortable. It was odd, but not an eclectic kind of odd. I know now why it's the only room that you cannot see on their website (I've posted two pics here). The room is long and narrow, with a small kitchenette running along its left side. Space is at a premium in this tiny room (there is no dresser, for example) and it seems weird to have taken up precious space with a small stove, fridge and kitchen sink when this room was converted for guests. The bath room is connected by a tiny hall, and it's in this hall that you will find some wooden shelves for your clothes and a bar on which to hang some things. The base of the toilet in the bathroom is built up on top of a small wooden box so that your feet dangle just off the floor (I'm 5'10'). There is a shower but no tub. The toiletries are excellent. The mattress on the twin bed should be replaced asap. The average bunk bed mattress at a children's overnight wilderness camp would put this thing to shame. It's ancient, thin, lumpy and completely out of place even in this most modest room at an otherwise wonderful inn. Overall, the room was perfectly adequate (except for the mattress) and a decent value; you just don't get the funky cool experience you would in one of the other rooms.

Overall, I enjoyed the stay and will not hesitate to stay again. Even with the quirky loft it was a much nicer experience than I would've gotten at a motel chain.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2012

I stayed at Stone Soup Inn for a friend's wedding. Like Indianapolis itself, Stone Soup is somewhat artsy & eccentric, but also low-key and strong on midwestern hospitality. Upon arriving there was somewhat of an odd feeling at having to telephone the innkeeper to open the door (what if I didn't have a phone with me...? Oh, right, we all have cell phones now... but what if I were an international traveller?) but she came right up when I did finally realize I did HAVE to call and not just ring the bell. In general, in fact, the innkeeper was there when I needed her but didn't get in the way. I loved my room, the NE Loft which was a very comfortable suite with full kitchen and a funky loft to sleep in that felt like being in a giant bunk bed. I shared the room with a friend one night and that worked just fine, and we also had groups of friends over to hang out in the suite or on the porch, partaking of the complimentary snacks and soda or enjoying a bottle of wine (not complimentary, but there were plenty of glasses and a prominent wine opener). I also used the workout room around the corner (quite a ways around the corner but then again I WAS going to work out so a little walk was just my warm up/cool down) which was great - I was the only one there and it had everything I needed to work off the breakfasts, which were equally low-key but healthful, customized, and tasty. Recommended, especially at what I consider an extremely reasonable price.

Room Tip: I'd go for the lofts EXCEPT if you have any physical problems (or kids!): climbing up the "...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Davenport, Iowa
Top Contributor
166 reviews 166 reviews
43 hotel reviews
Reviews in 100 cities Reviews in 100 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2012

We had a wonderful experience here - everything was as advertised, clean room and bath, generous breakfast, lovely facility with all the amenities you need - games, books, snacks, public areas and tranquil spaces. It's located in an urban setting - nice wallking in the neighborhood, yet an easy on and off the highway. We would definately stay here again!

Room Tip: Don't shy away from the rooms that share a bathroom....
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
15 reviews 15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2012

Stayed here after getting a great deal through a booking website ($81/night!) and ended up being upgraded to a spacious loft room. The place is lovely, and very comfortable, especially since I was traveling on business and it was VERY convenient to my work location. Free breakfast and snacks were helpful, and the staff was attentive but not intrusive. Only downside: The third floor loft rooms have marvelous bathrooms, but the water pressure up there is hit or miss. If you want to use the jetted tub, plan ahead and turn the water on WAY early.

The place is quiet, and the shared-bath rooms are only $85/night. I'm usually a little put off by shared baths, but this one is very private and only shares with one other room, so it's not like there is heated competition for the shower. Would definitely stay again.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2012 via mobile

Far cheaper than the other (chain) hotels in the area for the time I was staying. I arrived and was one of only 3 couples in the place for the night. We arrived late but the innkeeper was patiently waiting and gave us our key. I enjoyed a nice long bath in the shared bathroom (I was in the craftsman) and made my way to bed. Breakfast the next day was great for a continental style including fruit, yogurt, eggs, muffins and a slew of other items. My only complaint is that I got lost 4 times finding the place!

  • Stayed May 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Stone Soup Inn

Address: 1304 N. Central Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46202
Location: United States > Indiana > Indianapolis
Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 21 B&Bs / Inns in Indianapolis
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Stone Soup Inn 2.5*
Number of rooms: 9
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Also Known As:
Stone Soup Hotel Indianapolis

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