This review only pertains to the experience I had with the shuttle service and the management of the hotel.
I stayed in this hotel 2 years ago. It seemed like the perfect place. Big rooms, reasonable price, breakfast included, on the beach, AND they had a shuttle service to get me to the port where I was taking my cruise. 2 years ago it went off without a hitch.
Fast forward to this past weekend. I had booked the hotel in September. I had a party of 10 people so I wanted to get my room in advance. I mentioned I would need the shuttle and the price reflected the shuttle rate.
When I got to the hotel Friday evening (around 7pm) and checked in they had no idea I was taking the shuttle the following morning. I asked them to put me down and said I wanted to leave as early as possible because I wanted to eat lunch on the cruise ship. The gentleman behind the counter said he'd see what he could do and promised to call me to update me. I gave him my cell number and off we went to eat dinner. I never received a phone call so when I returned I asked him about our shuttle and he said we were booked on there for 12:45pm. I asked him why not earlier and he said others had already booked up and we got what was left. I mentioned to him that I booked the hotel in September and mentioned I wanted an early shuttle then. Seems like if anything I'd be at the top of the list. Eventually this problem was resolved when I spoke to a manager (by phone) who agreed with me and said he would make sure two taxis were there to take us when we wanted to leave. I was very grateful and told him I appreciated his good service. I can understand mistakes but I want to be taken care of when I spend a lot of money on hotel and shuttles.
Unfortunately that's not the end of the story. 5 days later we're exiting the cruiseship. I called the hotel to get the shuttle to pick us up. A woman named Christina answered and said the shuttle would be there in 20 minutes. I said "Great!" and continued in our line at customs to get out of the port. I received a call 10 minutes later from Christina asking where we were. I told her we were still in line. She said the driver was already there waiting on us and he couldn't stay (port restrictions). I reminded her she said I had 20 minutes but by the time I got out to the curb (5 min later) the driver was gone. I called the hotel and asked that they send him back. She said he'd be back within "20 minutes at the latest". I was annoyed but accepted this. 3 of our group have mobility issues due to age and obesity. It was also starting to warm up outside. 20 minutes came and went and I saw no one. I called the hotel and was told they'd be there "within another 20 minutes". I mentioned that I was told that before but she simply apologized and said we'd see him soon. Another 20 minutes came and went without a soul. Finally 10 minutes after that (50 minutes after we got outside) the driver pulls up.
I had decided beforehand that I was not going to take my frustration out on the driver himself. After all he's not in control of what the front desk told me and if he can't hang out longer than 5 minutes on the port because of the port rules, this is not his fault. I did want to speak to the hotel and get an apology and see what they would offer us for the inconvenience. So I approach the driver and asked "Are you the hotel on 89th?" He said "Yes...I've already been here once". I told him that we were told 20 minutes and he was there in 10. He explained that he could't hang around. I told him that circling the block would have been appreciated. He starts loading our luggage but he's apparently very frustrated with us. He starts throwing our luggage roughly in the back of the shuttle. I asked him if he can take it easy on our stuff and he said "You know what?? You can take a taxi, I'm not putting up with this". He then starts taking our luggage out. My mother begs him to take us and so did some of the rest of our group. He relents and says we have to load our own luggage. We do so and make our way to the hotel. After loading our stuff in our vehicles I go inside to have a chat with the manager. He's not there again (Shocker!) and so once again I'm on the phone with him. This time he offers no apology. He said his driver explained what has happened and he will discuss with the rest of the staff. I asked him what he was prepared to offer and he gave no answer. I told him that I would be in touch with whoever I needed to to get this resolved. I also gave my side of the story and when I got to the part with the driver, the driver (who was standing nearby) started mouthing off at me and had to be restrained by Christina.
I asked for a phone call by end of business Friday and haven't received one as of today (Monday). I've already submitted a request for guest relations through their corporate office.