Seeing how much potential there is in this once glorious resort added to our disappointment with our stay at the Greenbrier.
First, what they do right. We were very impressed with the setting, grounds and public areas. They are grand and beautifully maintained. The flower gardens are especially impressive and make walks around the property very enjoyable. Also, most of the employees are friendly and efficient and attended to our every need. Everyone from the shuttle drivers, valets and bellman to the concierge, salespeople and desk staff were pleasant and helpful.
The highlight of our stay was the afternoon tea with the lovely entertainment provided. We also enjoyed the complimentary morning coffee service. The rich, full bodied coffee was by far the best we'd had during our ten day trip. And mention should be made of the Greenbrier's attention to detail in everything from the luxurious robes and slippers provided in the guest rooms to the elegant and charming decor touches throughout all of the public areas. It was fun to explore and discover them all.
There are nice touches in the guest rooms, too. There is a large walk-in closet and plenty of drawer space. The water pressure in the shower is very good and everything in the bathroom and bedroom was very clean. They get an A+ for bright lighting in the room, too. And they use quality linens on the comfortable beds and in the bathroom. We enjoyed the toiletries and supplies that were provided, too.
But there are problems. Most of our disappointment was with our guest room. The biggest negative was the two plush chairs provided for sitting. Both had broken springs that caused us to pitch backward when we tried to sit, straining our backs. We are tall, but both quite thin, so it wasn't a weight issue - the chairs are badly broken. And their arms looked dirty and threadbare, so I was afraid to rest my arms on them. The a/c unit is very loud and cuts on and off all night, jolting you from sleep. And all of the usable surfaces in the room are covered with extraneous items either for sale or for decoration. Between that and the colorful Dorothy Draper decor it felt loud and cluttered.
There is no coffee maker in the room, something I have never seen before in a guest room. So, if you want your coffee before 6 AM or after 9 AM, the time the upper lobby coffee is served, you must order it from room service. Same with refilling the tiny ice bucket provided. If you want ice, you must ring for room service since there is no place to get it for yourself. I missed having a glass of ice water whenever I wanted one.
The bathroom is large, but inefficient. There is no counter area to place a dopp kit or toiletry bag, only a pedestal sink, tiny ledge and commercial grade toilet in the space, the latter of which is exceptionally loud and jarring at night. And only two bath towels are provided. Even an economy hotel provides four bath towels for two adults. So, a hand towel must be used to towel dry hair. And the TV has a pronounced "judder" that interferes with viewing whenever there is action.
Again, there is so much potential here and so much that is grand, it's a shame about the rest. With some well placed improvements, a stay at the Greenbrier could be so much more enjoyable.