This Ramada has so much potential. The location is decent––not great, but an easy enough walk to the subway lines for people who are used to city life. The breakfast is well stocked and somewhat hearty. The views of the city are great. The building itself isn't in too bad of shape, and the rooms are quite large. All of the company-mandated elements are spot on as well––toiletries, irons, hairdriers, televisions, etc... However, this hotel was a major disappointment in that the people staffing the hotel seemed to, in some way, mess up everything that was potentially excellent about this hotel. The whole branding of Ramada includes these catchy taglines like "You do your thing. Leave the rest to us." However, it seemed like this particular Ramada wanted to do absolutely nothing for their customers.
I traveled over MLK weekend with a small group (16) of high school students. We booked online using Booking.com and got a good advance rate. Here, unfortunately, is where we encountered our first problem. The hotel managers refused to talk to us about our reservation. Instead, they always sent us back to Booking.com's customer support staff. While I understand the reasoning behind this, it got to be where even simple questions were shrugged off by the staff. This was our first taste of the extremely poor customer service at this particular Ramada.
Check in was rather painless, although the staff could never really explain to me how they were coming up with the room rates they were charging us. Booking.com said one thing, and our receipts said another. I kept having to check that they were not double-charging our credit card because none of the receipts were clear as to what had been charged and what was yet to be charged upon checkout.
After the first night, I heard lots of students and chaperones complaining about the rooms––especially about holes in the curtains, a lack of linens on the beds, dirty towels, etc... I shrugged this off, as I had yet to experience any of this. I also reminded them for around $100/room/night on MLK weekend, we were getting a good deal. However, I experienced all of these things in short order myself. On the second night, my sheets and towels all had holes in them. (See pictures!) If I was managing that hotel, I would clearly instruct my staff to throw out damaged linens and replace them with new ones. This seems to be common sense in the hospitality industry. You want to look good and give your customers the best experience––having holes in your linens is a rather stupid mistake that could be easily fixed with a little attention to detail! On the third day, I spotted my first soiled towel posing as a fresh one. The towel that was folded in my room had large black marks spread all over them. Clearly, this was someone's make up rag that was not thoroughly bleached/washed before being provided to another room. This was also the morning that I witnessed the lack of linens my group had been complaining about. On the first day, I had 2-3 fresh towels in the shower. On the third morning, I woke up to only one towel, one washcloth, and no bathmat. The group kept making fun of the holes in the curtains, and I finally saw that the last morning we were there. The sun was shining into my hotel room, and I still had the curtains closed from the night before. All throughout the room, small beams of light were escaping from the *hundreds* of small holes in the "blackout" curtains.
What sent me "over the edge" with this hotel was their refusal to send postcards for me. Rather, they told me that a post office was just down the street and that I could do it there. I offered to pay for the stamps, even, but was turned away by both of the staffers I asked. Once again, if I was managing this hotel, taking a few stamps from the office and dropping two post cards off in the mail would have been a little gesture that could have made a customer's trip even more memorable. Rather, they took the lazy way out and told me to deal with it myself.
Let's get to the positives, because there were some. They were very nice to our group and never complained about having a group of high schoolers at the hotel––this was a huge plus in their favor. The breakfast was good for a budget hotel (see pics). There were always fresh bagels, juices, cereals, doughnuts, hard boiled eggs, and some sort of other protein (scrambled eggs or sausage). Once again, though, this potential was ruined by laziness. Only one of the four mornings we were there was the waffle iron plugged in and waffle mix available. There were also very questionable decisions about things like milk and creme cheese being left out, unrefrigerated from 6-10 AM.
The interior of the hotel was recently renovated, it seems. The bathrooms were very stylish, the in-room furniture was nice, the televisions were all new, the coffee makers worked well, and the toiletries were nice. The check-out process was also easy, as they didn't mind whether or not all of our students turned in their key cards. However, noise traveled very easily in the building and you could hear everything in the hallway and in the adjacent room. My door wouldn't deadbolt because it was damaged (or hung improperly).
Location really is a hit or miss depending on your style of travel. There is no parking, so don't expect to drive a rental car to this hotel. The closest, limited action, subway is .3 miles away. So, if you're not used to walking around in a city a bit––forget it. This hotel isn't for you. The more extensive subway stations are .5 or .6 mile away which we had to use for some of our trips into certain parts of Manhattan.
Overall, this hotel has a lot of great potential. For the price we paid, I definitely expected to only get the "nuts and bolts" of hotel service. However, the staff and obvious human errors at this Ramada made what could have been a positive budget hotel experience a rather disappointing one. We loved our trip to NYC, but would never stay or recommend anyone to stay in this particular hotel. Ramada needs to seriously consider revoking its brand from this seemingly-independently managed hotel.
Holes in the bed sheets, black out curtains, and towels? Come on!
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- Also Known As:
- Ramada Long Island City Hotel Long Island City
- Ramada Long Island City New York