Windsor Tower Hotel
Off Exhibition Road
Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain
Rating: Three-Star (according to brochures and netsites)
Ramee Group of Hotels, Apartments & Resorts
Rate: (Standard Room); Queen Size Bed; BD 26.250/night
Tel: 17 297 000
Check-out time: 12 Noon
Date of Stay: July 30, 2007
An average man like me loves to be in hotels. It happens only once in a full moon or more appropriately said, it happens only rarely. Let us assess in my own simple way, the way Windsor Tower Hotel does business. I arrived after 12 noon, eager to see a new environment. The place is basically hard to find if you are new to the Kingdom of Bahrain. It lies at the back of GOSI complex and Delmon University on Exhibition Road. But if you are a tourist, it would be easier to ask people around than finding the place through a map.
The reception area is good. Small yet cozy. I arrive as simple as I can be, white shirt, jeans and an adidas shoes, carrying my black computer bag. First impressions last, and my first impressions started from the downside. The reception, as I said, was small yet cozy but what disturbed me was that I waited a long time for my room to be ‘cleaned’ as the receptionist said.
I just have to sit for a while at the lobby and try to assess the people going in and out. Most of them are in Bahrain through their companies, either on business conferences or on connecting flights going out of the Gulf. The lobby faces the restaurant (in glass walls) on which an Indian TV program flashes on the wall TV. The rooms can be accessed through two elevators which lies adjacent to the lobby.
Now, I waited and waited and waited. The room boy came and said, the room is all ready and the key was given to the guest. Mind you, I was the guest. The receptionist got angry, realizing only that a mistake happened after the bellboy left. I waited and waited again. After a while, they said the room is all ready! Another bellboy accompanied me up to my room at the 3rd floor.
When I arrived, yeah, right, the room was all ready! To my shock, the (old and used) linens were lining up the carpet, the bathroom is still at a mess and there is clutter everywhere. What irks me is that they say ‘it is all ready’ twice and it is not ready. For a hotel like this, good customer service must come from being on precise and clear statements to the guest. Well, as I am here to assess, I dare not say anything yet.
The bellboys (three of them) just rushed everything in front of my eyes, they placed the linens in record time. They ‘cleaned’ the bathroom in record time, got the clutter out, with some help from me, arranged the tables and tissues, and ‘freshened’ the bathroom in lightning speed. What were they doing before this time? I guess they were ‘busy’?!!
First impressions lasts, but second impressions last longer! I tried to get a wi-fi connection for my laptop and another shock to me, No Networks found. Great! The receptionist sold me a BD1.000 internet voucher (for password), assuring me of a wireless connection in the third floor but my room is stuck in the very ‘corners of the earth’ that it did not register any signal from any network at all! Great, just great!
Next, I need to check the bathroom. A bathtub/ shower area is nice, small, though, with a shower curtain. Excuse me, but all humans do this, I need to take a ‘dump’. And a third shock of my short hotel life, it does not flush!!! Maybe, I can fix this, I said. But after trying again and again, I need to call room service to fix things up. Well, I thought everything will be well afterwards. But no, it just keeps piling for negative impressions.
I am not a ‘tasteful’ man. I don’t go for too fancy things. All I want is sincerity, good service, clean and cozy surroundings. Simple, plain and clean.
The Room Assessment
Starting with the carpet, for a three-star hotel, I expected more. But it turned that the carpet is likely not vacuumed. I felt that if I stump strong enough the dust will spread out.
(As all of them are sticking on the wall or on the sides)
The cupboard, it is a full sized wardrobe area. Good with two hangers provided. Only two!
The TV is your usual TV with your usual remote.
The Mirror beside the TV, big and just out of place.
The tables and chairs, they look drab but ‘liveable’ in a way.
The view of my room is hotel’s side parking area, with your usual modern Arab city background.
The curtain, that’s a good curtain, it shades and blinds light completely. I love it when it is like that, I can sleep well.
The bed, big, not soft, not hard either, my type. But the bed cover needs to be updated and I felt it was not ‘clean’.
I have a friend coming in and they charged him with BD 5.000. I don’t know what was that for?!! But it was unfair, I guess.
If my wife will come with me here, would the rate would be placed higher than the 26.250 they charged? I wonder. That adds more negative impressions.
I know they have some bands and bars somewhere but I dare not venture. I am here to sleep but first I need connection to send some work. So, I went down to the lobby, sat there in the lounge and got my wi-fi connection. Going down from the third floor, the incoming sound, when the elevator passed the first floor, was deafening. The band was playing!
More people are coming in at night, than at the morning. Arabs, young and old, are flocking in while I was sitting at the lounge doing work. Most of them were looking for some good time, I guess.
The 3rd floor Hallway
I went for a walk outside the hotel and after some time, I went back to my room for an early night. I notice now that my room on the 3rd floor lies after going through some cabinet like doors. Go through an unmarked left door and turn left and my room is basically the most ‘kept’ room here. Creepy for some but it would be nice, I hope, because there would enough ‘quietness’to give me rest. (That would follow!)
But first, I went to the bathroom again and bingo, the flush problem is still there. Yuck!!! A big yuck.
The bathroom is actually big in space. The ceramic-lined wash basin was big too. Amenities like shower gel, soaps and shampoos were there. Good. The towels are a let-down. It was clean but old, one big towel and one small foot towel, and they are not matching in whiteness and age.
The ceramic tiles under the basin are a sight worthy of not beholding. One tile is missing which shows the underlying plumbing areas in rust and everything young might not want to see. I saw that when I was taking a bath, lying in the bathtub.
The bathtub is small. With my small size, I kept bumping on the soap holder (ceramic). Once, I knocked my elbows on it, giving me an electrifying feeling, cursing!
The exhaust fan
Inside the bathroom, there was this exhaust fan which I thought would be working well. But as usual, it does not. More ‘negative impressions’.
The Sound- the Biggest yuck!
Was I expecting a miracle, hoping for ‘quietness’? At third floor, my room might have been near the bar and the playing band area. All through the night, the sound was in constant banging on my ears. Would they be able to solve the noise barrage that comes in my room? I doubt it. It would not be solved. With the way things are going, sound insulation is not on their agenda yet.
I would heartily NOT recommend this hotel for my friends and guests. If I have other places to lodge the night out, I would definitely avoid this place. The Windsor Tower Hotel was not a good experience for me. All I wanted was my privacy, but the noise from the playing band was the biggest reason why I would dare not recommend this hotel. I do not know how would it will be like in the 5th or 8th floor.
The way they accommodated me, and the way I slept that night, it was a BIG let-down for them. If I have made myself known that I would make a review of a room hotel, they would probably give some newer linens, cleaner carpets, matching towels and insulated rooms. Or I guess, not.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.