I almost hate writing this review because the staff was great (for the most part). However, when management makes such bad decisions then I have to tell others.
CHECK-IN/FRONT DESK: The Homewood Suites and Garden Inn share a front desk. No biggie, I've seen this before, especially in urban core areas. HOWEVER, there were usually only two people working the front desk. TWO PEOPLE FOR TWO FULL SIZE HOTELS. Those ladies still managed to keep a smile on their face even when they had a long line of worn out and angry guests.
RESERVATIONS: We had booked a room at the Homewood with two doubles and a fold out so our family of five could fit comfortably. However, management had overbooked the hotel so our room was not available when we checked in around 6pm. So they moved us to two side by side rooms (not adjoining) in the Garden Inn. Ok, not a big deal. It WOULD HAVE been a big deal if we had brought food to cook for dinner in the Homewood like we had originally planned. (but we didn't, so I won't complain) BUT then, they made us move the next night (we were only there two nights) to a Homewood Suites. Once again, this SHOULDN'T have been a big deal. I did book a room in the Homewood and not 2 in the Garden Inn. HOWEVER, because there were never more than two people at the front desk, this meant I had to wait 30 minutes to check out and get our luggage stored in the morning and then another 30 minutes to check in and get our luggage into our room new room that evening.
ROOMS: Yes, there were issues with the rooms. Several guests, including ourselves, didn't have hot (it wasn't cold-but to call it warm was a stretch) water in the Garden Inn. Then, when we moved to the Homewood the ceiling fan was literally falling down. When I called to the front desk they did send someone up (30 minutes later) and the maintence guy started looking at it to see if he could put it back in and it fell on him! (Luckily he wasn't hurt-he was so disturbed by the whole event that he left all his gear in our room-including an uncovered knife and needle nose pliers-luckily he called us 30 minutes later to tell us before one of our kids found them!
(Ok, these are minor things that I don't usually care about-but given everything else they just added to the frustration)
PHONES: Our cells had poor service in the building so we decided to order out for pizza. I checked the phone info sheet-no mention of charges-and dialed several local numbers. The third call finally went through. Later that night I had to make another call to the same delivery place. The next morning I had charges for four phone calls! Even if the call didn't go through (when I say didn't go through I mean fast busy or the call cannot be completed as dialed) they still charged us. (the nice overworked front desk staff-who knew me by name now-quickly removed the charges)
POOL: Once again, normally not a big deal-but with everything else it was just icing on the cake. First, the pool is part of MAC, an fitness center, no biggie, usually. But, the first night it was closed for a staff party and no one told the hotel. Then both mornings it was closed for swim lessons. So, we planned to take the kids to the pool-which had been raved about by a porter and the concierge as having a great kids area and even a slide(I thought this was odd since it was part of an urban fitness club but, hey, maybe they also cater to the families in nearby Little Italy?) So we make the trek down from our upper level room across both hotels to the MAC, I go to sign in and the nice lady at the desk says, "Oh, you can't come in here-you don't have shoes on." Yes, you need shoes for the pool. So, the three kids and I trek back up to the hotel and come back down-this time with shoes-and make our way to the wonderful kids pool. Only to discover that it's nothing but a standard size urban inside hotel pool. Still, it's November and we have a good time. That is, until my two oldest (7th and 4th grade) decide they want to swim some laps while I play with the youngest in the pool. There were several open lanes and I explain lap etiquette and they have themselves a good ol time seeing who could swim faster or longer-the whole time being very respectful and quiet. Until they get kicked out because kids aren't allowed to swim in the lap pool.
VALET: I don't use valet so, once again, not something I would usually comment on but since it arose, here it goes. There were maybe three guys working valet (4 on the night I checked in) and they always were running. I figured they were hustleing to be good employees. No, they were hustleing because there weren't enough people working-this happened every day. In my long time at the front desk (I easily spent an hour and a half over two nights at the front desk) I heard countless people getting their valet charges credited because they were waiting 45mins+ for their car. The valet parking garage is attached to the hotel. Need I say more?
In summary, these hotels are staffed with friendly (if slightly uninformed people) that are doing the best the can with poor management overseeing them.
Would I go back? NEVER
Do I hope all the nice employees find a better place to work? YES!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.