My wife and I decided to go to La Crosse for Irish Fest to celebrate her birthday. Being that Irish Fest was going on hotel options were extremely limited. We decided to book through Hotwire and we were booked at this hotel for $40 for the evening.
We pulled up to the hotel and we were both expecting something a little different I think. We were by no means were expecting the Ritz but not this. Not ones to judge a book by its cover we tried not to form an early opinion and proceeded to check in.
We were greeted warmly by a front desk clerk who quickly got us checked into our room. He noticed that we had requested an air mattress and saild that he would have it brought to the room as soon as he could. This was nice to see that the call I had made prior to arrival had been documented. We were given keys to room 149 which is located on the first floor at the very back of the hotel. We were directed to park at the back of the hotel for easy access to our room. Our room was directly to the left when walking in the building which could have been great or horrible depending on traffic.
We walked into our room and I stopped dead in my tracks before fully walking into the room. My wife took 2 steps in looked back at me and immediately apologized for booking this room. You were immediately hit with a mildew smell that was overwhelming and smelt like it was infested with mold. I walked in cautiously as I noticed very old and dirty carpeting. The bathroom was very small and the shower was not clean with hair and mold throughout. There was a large spider web in the upper right hand corner of the window when you slid back the drapes. After being in the room for less than five minutes I was very concerned about the possibility of bed bugs. Being that I have worked in the hospitality industry for a number of years and closely with cases of bed bugs I wanted to eliminate this potential issue. I pulled back the stained comforter, blanket with a hole in it and stained fitted and flat sheets. I did not immediately see any indication of bed bugs so I went to pull up the mattress and box spring. That's when I noticed the bed bug protector for the box spring. Now this means that at one point this room had the issue or the hotel was being proactive.....I'm hoping the latter. The protector for the box spring was very badly stained on the right side if standing in front of the bed. I unzipped it just enough to see if I could see anything and all I saw was an exposed inside of the box spring. I closed it back up, looked at my wife and she could tell this was not going to be a memorable experience.
Being that it was her birthday and we were there for Irish Fest we decided to not make any rash decisions immediately. We called a cab and headed to the fair grounds. After having a bite to eat and a few drinks we both decided that we just couldn't bring ourselves to actually sleep in that hotel room. I had planned on talking to the desk about a different room but when we walked in at about 11pm there was a no vacancy sign on the desk. We went to the room and grabbed our bags we had yet to unpack and proceeded to the desk to check out. When checking out we were not asked why we were checking out early. I started to convey my concerns but my wife stopped me knowing there was nothing the night staff member would have been able to do to fix the situation for us.
I have read previous reviews and responses from the GM and other staff members all of which came with an apology that almost felt defensive. I'm not looking for an apology response, not looking for a "special rate to return", not looking for anything other than to let everyone know what you will be getting. I should have realized and truly now know.....you get what you pay for. I thought I was getting a "deal" and instead got something that I wouldn't take for free. Only regret is not being able to try the breakfast. Hopefully that makes up for the shortcomings that people experience when entering their room. Renovation can not come soon enough for this property and housekeeping needs to address a number of cleanliness issues.
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- Also Known As:
- Howard Johnson La Crosse Hotel La Crosse
- La Crosse Howard Johnson