I have been a regular guest of the Icon over the past 5 years, and this time, I noticed a HUGE drop-off in everything from cleanliness, supply, room preservation to service, which was relatively poor.
I have stayed in just about every type of room they have over the years, and on this stay, I stayed in two different rooms, after having requested a room change. The desk agent failed to mention that my first room was a HP accessible room. It had a plastic liner under the sheets, which -when combined with the duvet, negated any need to go down to the sauna in the basement. The shower had no bottom lip, and no door, so stepping onto the tile floor of the bathroom, from the shower, was an experience for the skate-board generation. The amenities were cheap, starring a shower gel dispenser that shoots .0000342 ml of fluid per pump, making it impossible to use (in ALL rooms). one lamp didn't work, and one of the bathroom lights was burned out. The room WAS big enough, though. One other problem in the HP room was that the bathroom door kept swinging wide open, and forced a wedge against the main room door. I am not handicapped, but am safety conscious, so I played around with this a bit, and found that it was VERY likely that it would open, lean against the front door in such a way as to make it impossible to push into the room in an emergency (likely scenario in an accessible room, right?) Compounding this was the fact that the closet door would add to the jam up, from the other side of the entrance way. Very seriously flawed especially for someone with a walker or worse, in a chair! Bad scene.
So I moved to another room. 3 bulbs out, including one in the bathroom and one on the main chandelier. TV to the left of the foot of the bed, on a pull out that my wife or daughter could not have moved, and when it swiveled to face the bed, it almost tipped over, off the shelf! Ouch. Cordless phone that was inaudible. This room had paint chipping from the front of the armoire, and stains on the velour couch. Yuck, what would stain with sort of a starchy ring? I wonder what it was...
OK, so here's a little sticky situation. The place has Mobil 4 star rating. The restaurant is pricy but reasonable, as the food is rather excellent. We are in there, a party of 8 sitting at a bar-table. Very comfortable, average income of each in party is well above average, professional group. There is one other party in the entire restaurant/lounge. There are 3 waiters, a bus boy, a bar tender and a hostess on duty. It is getting late enough that it is certain that there might be one or two small parties stopping in for a night cap, but that didn't happen. So all these guys sitting around talking about their tip, the manager, etc., and none really doing anything special. One of my party is absolutely craving nachos, so we call the waiter over. He tells us they don't have nachos. We ask him to check w/the chef (who is on duty with a good hour left, and nobody is ordering food.) He says he doesn't have to check, b/c there are no nachos. OK, now here is where a 4 star hotel kicks in. DIRECTLY next door, not 100 feet from where we were sitting, is a fabulous Mexican restaurant. When I used to wait on tables, I always made sure the customer was happy. I say the guy should have quietly "done what it takes" in the 2010 economy to be sure that we stayed and drank as many $8 - 10 drinks as we could. I don't get it. When I suggested that maybe he might want to run out and get some, he invited us to go over to the other place to conclude our evening. Fast forward to the end, when I eventually picked up the tab ACROSS THE STREET, it was for 24 drinks, and 2 plates of nachos, $230, and the tip was $50! This shows an amazing lack of depth and spells ruination for a hotel!
OK, so if you got this far, here is the advice. Even though the Jacuzzi rooms are nice, they are decidedly smaller than the rooms on the odd side of the hall. Odd side rooms have parking lot views until you get to the 8th or 9th floor. Jacuzzi rooms look out over Congress Street, and there are two HUGE drawbacks. 1) there is a metal grate that fits loosely on Congress Street that is permanently there for drainage. it is about 30 feet long, and every time a car runs over it, it makes a HUGE metal on metal clattering sound like someone dropped the silverware drawer onto the kitchen floor. It will wake you out of a sound sleep. 2) that is IF you CAN fall asleep because of the VERY loud jazz club, which has frequent fights outside, lots of police sirens, and you WILL wake up when the patrons leave at 2:15 and shout to one another out on the street. They have tried (unsuccessfully) to address these issues with double-pane glass, but it doesn't work, really!
If you need to stay there, be sure you get a good deal online, otherwise, stay in a safer, less bombed out looking neighborhood. If you long for the panhandlers of NOLA, this is a good place to take a walk.