The hotel is comfortable, clean, and the staff is friendly. Unfortunately, we had a particularly bad experience that I feel was handled poorly by the hotel. Despite that, I would probably recommend this hotel.
Our family stayed at this hotel over Veteran's Day Weekend in 2012 during a soccer tournament. Upon arrival, we were told that the room we had booked (two-bedroom suite with a fireplace) was not available. They apologized and offered us a two-bedroom without a fireplace....for $10 more per night. I explained to the desk clerk that I was not going to pay more for a lower grade room. She checked with her manager and agreed to honor my original price quote, but in a room without a fireplace. I wasn't particularly happy with that arrangement, but we needed a room and I accepted.
The rooms were very clean and modern. The kitchen area was sufficient for our purposes with a full-sized refrigerator and microwave.The bedroom was spacious, but the living room area was very cramped once the sofabed was pulled out. Nevertheless, overall I was pleased with what I saw.
On our last day in the hotel, I decided to take the kids down to the indoor pool for one last swim. During the swim, my 8 year-old daughter started coughing uncontrollably. At first I thought she had swallowed some water - then the fumes hit me. Apparently, the lifeguard had added some chemicals to the hottub and caused a chemical reaction that released chlorine gas into the air. The fumes caused coughing in all of us and vomiting in some. We all evacuated the pool area and headed up to the lobby to inform the manager what had happened. After seeing six soaking wet, coughing guests appear in the lobby, the desk clerk asked us if we were okay. I explained to her that we had all been exposed to chlorine gas in their pool. She responded by saying something along the lines of “Okay” and casually returning to typing on the computer. We remained in the lobby for several more minutes like that. It wasn’t until I explained to her what chlorine gas is and what the dangers associated with it are that she decided this was something she should probably tell the on-duty manager about.
The on-duty manager at the time was great. He showed genuine concern and rushed to call the fire department to respond to the situation. Emergency services personnel arrived shortly thereafter and evaluated us. Three of the six of us were told to load up in an ambulance and sent to the emergency room at a local hospital. Since this was about an hour before our scheduled checkout time, my wife approached the desk clerk to let them know we wouldn’t be checking out on time. The desk clerk responded by telling my wife we could have an extra two hours. Unbelievable. She responded by telling him we would let him know when we returned from the hospital and would discuss checkout then.
Luckily, there were no serious issues and the ER released us after about three hours of observation. After walking back to the hotel from the hospital, the on-duty desk clerk approached us and apologized for what had happened and told us Hilton would comp us our room for the weekend, give us one free meal at the hotel restaurant, allow us to stay an extra night, and handle our hospital charges. She then took our billing information from the hospital and said she’d forward it on to the manager.
Shortly thereafter, we received a call from the regional manager. He was extremely apologetic and told us Hilton would take care of all of the charges. Unfortunately, that’s not the way it turned out. The hotel turned the hospital charges over to the insurance company for the subcontractor that ran the lifeguard service. They paid for a little over half of the charges, however Hilton did follow up after that and my insurance company ended up being billed for the remaining balance.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Thank you for your feedback regarding your stay at the Homewood Suites Rockville-Gaithersburg. I'm very happy that you found our hotel to clean and comfortable and our staff to be friendly. I'm sorry for the issue that you experienced upon your arrival. We strive to provide the accommodations reserved by every guest, and I apologize that we failed to do so, but I'm happy to hear that you enjoyed your suite. I'm very sorry for the problems that you encountered in our pool as the safety and security of our guests is our top priority. Also, I am happy to contact the insurance companies regarding the hospital charges and will follow up with you accordingly. Thank you again for your feedback, and we certainly hope to welcome you and family back in the future.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.