My wife and I recently booked a room for 3 nights at the Ramada Inn in Ithaca, NY. We booked the room early (July 11, 2012) because we know that hotel rooms fill up fast for college graduations. Our stay was for the nights of May 17- 19. We paid $200 a night for this room and were looking forward to the stay. We’ve enjoyed staying at Ramada in the past because of the amenities offered and because the facilities are nice. There were many, many things that happened during this stay, though, that took away from the enjoyment of this stay, and tarnished the otherwise great time we should have had while celebrating our daughter’s commencement.
A few weeks ago my wife called to inquire about the pools available on site. She was informed that there was an outdoor pool that would be open for Memorial Day weekend, and that there was an indoor pool as well. When my wife asked about the hot tub she was told that “it was broken”. Fine, we can deal without a hot tub as long as we have a pool and a sauna. A few days before hand my wife called to inquire about the pools again, hoping the hot tub would have been fixed in the interim. She was informed that the heater for the indoor pool was broken. Well, what can we do? We’ll have to do without a pool, as much as a part of the reason we booked the hotel in the first place was because it had a pool. (more on the pool in a minute)
When we arrived we were given Room 212. My wife inquired about breakfast. At $200 a night breakfast should be included. Apparently not. I don’t know how much you have to pay to get breakfast included, but $200 isn’t it. We were told that “We aren’t paying the rate that allows for breakfast.”
The first thing we wanted to do when we arrived was to take a shower. We traveled by train, and after spending 24 hours in transit the first thing you want to do is take a shower. When we turned the shower on and pulled the lever to turn the water from the tub to the shower head, only a part of the water came out of the shower head…the rest still came out of the tub faucet. And it pulsated. We turned the water off and tried it again, with the same result. After we got done we called the desk and while we were gone the maintenance guy came to look at it. We have no idea what he did, but it seemed to be better the next day. Come Sunday morning, though, it was doing it again…we didn’t bother to call…it wasn’t worth the effort, only to be disappointed again.
Then I noticed some other deficiencies in the bathroom. First of all, the hot and cold valves were reverse threaded. Instead of turning the water valves counter-clockwise to turn the water on, it had to be done counter clockwise…both sides. Additionally, the collars for both the hot and cold water valves weren’t sealed to the tile behind them…they were hanging loose (see photo). I’m pretty sure that’s not a standard plumbing practice. Secondly, there was a hole next to the tub. Yes, a h-o-l-e between the edge of the tub and the baseboard (see photo). The baseboard behind the toilet was in a similar state of disrepair (see photo). Also, the silver backing on the mirror was coming off in several places (see photos). For a hotel that brags that it was “Recently Renovated in 2011”, the condition of this room bore no evidence of that renovation in any fashion.
The HVAC unit in the room was loud. Disturbingly loud. Wakes You Up When It Kicks On In The Middle Of The Night Loud.
On Saturday morning we headed out about 11:00 for lunch and to meet family. While we had put out the Do Not Disturb sign the night before, we took it off the door handle when we left and put it on the hanger rail. When we left the Do Not Disturb sign was not on the door. When we returned from lunch there was one on the door, and we had a note that housekeeping tried to clean, but the sign was on the door. When we left I saw a Do Not Disturb sign on the floor in the hallway, so my guess is that someone saw it and decided to arbitrarily put it on our door. Regardless, the room hadn’t been cleaned. We called to the front desk to get it done and they said someone would be up soon. We left again for a couple hours and came back, the room still hadn’t been cleaned. We had to call AGAIN and we were informed the cleaning person was at dinner and would be up shortly. No problem, we were about to go to dinner anyway, so we went to dinner and passed the guy coming to clean our room on the way down to Dapper’s. After we went back to our room to see that OUR KEY CARD WOULDN’T WORK. (I am not making this up…I couldn’t.) Neither of our room keys worked, so we had to go to the front desk to get that fixed.
On Sunday after we returned from the commencement goings on our room door WAS NOT LOCKED BY HOUSEKEEPING. The room had been cleaned, but the door wasn’t shut all the way, so the lock didn’t latch. This is VERY poor and VERY concerning, as the door opened with a mere push. Had someone gotten into the room and anything was missing, this letter would have come through legal venues.
While on the subject of security, none of the entrance doors to the hotel had any kind of keyed lock/entry security, meaning anyone could gain access to the hotel at any time. That is less than secure. That is completely and utterly UNsecure..and a hazard to everyone inside that building at any time.
When we finally got a chance to use the pool we called down to see what the pool and hot tub hours are. “Ma’am, we haven’t had a working hot tub in at least two years”. Yes…seriously….that’s what we were told. It wasn’t broken, like we were told previously, it hasn’t worked in over two years. (Incidentally, the in-room information book still references the hot tub.) Imagine our surprise (sarcasm detected) when we went to get into the indoor pool to find that it was cold. As disappointment is no longer surprising to us during this visit, we decided to use the sauna. On the control panel for the sauna, the temperature dial is missing/broken, so there is no adjusting the temperature of the sauna. Additionally, the numbers on the timer are, in a complementing fashion, missing as well. Inside the sauna the temperature gauge/regulator wire is hanging there…off the wall...in the middle of the sauna. If someone were to enter without turning the light on – or someone turn around unexpectedly – it could be quite harmful.
In looking around the pool area you can see where plywood is covering what used to be the hot tub. Just some old plywood, sitting there covering the hot tub, as if it was a piece of furniture. The double doors that lead to the courtyard where the outdoor pool is was had been sealed for the winter…WITH DUCT TAPE…and the outdoor pool, which was supposed to be open in less than a week, looked like something out of a horror movie.
We killed at least a half dozen spiders in the room during our stay.
When we needed ice, we were information that (and isn’t this rich?) that the ice machine on the second floor was broken and we’d have to use the one on the first floor.
So…let’s make a list of the problems, inconveniences, and shortcomings we encountered:
1) $200 a day and no breakfast?
2) Water in tub/shower not working correctly
3) Faucets in tub reverse threaded
4) Collars on faucets dangling loose and not secured to wall
5) Hole in wall by tub
6) Baseboard behind toilet in disrepair
7) Silver backing coming off mirror
8) HVAC unit very loud
9) Pool cold
10) Hot tub boarded over
11) Sauna in a state of disrepair
12) Pool doors sealed with duct tape
13) Door left un-locked by housekeeping after cleaning
14) No security, whatsoever, on entry doors
15) Outdoor pool looks more like a cesspool
16) Room not cleaned until 3rd phone call
17) Room keys suddenly stop working
18) Spiders in the room
19) Ice Machine broken
After checking a similar weekend in October (similar off-season rate), an identical room was available for $83 a night. LESS THAN HALF of what we paid for this dismal visit. For $200 a night you can stay at a MUCH NICER hotel, where everything works, nothing is broken, someone opens a door for you, and the building and room are secure.
This adds up to a VERY poor, VERY unsatisfying, VERY alienating visit. The Ramada Inn chain has always had a reputation for excellence…but this was far from evident during our visit. For $200 a night one would expect more from a stay (breakfast included, and that is a huge sticking point.). Based on this stay we could have stayed at Super 8 for half the price and had a much better experience.
At least the bathroom items had a very pleasant smell.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.