The first thing to note is that last year the Virginia Attorney General filed a lawsuit against this hotel for committing fraud, deception, and misrepresentation. The hotel was accused of violating Virginia's bait-and-switch law by charging customers more than they were told their rooms would cost. Also, about a month before we were there, 2 people were shot in the lobby of the hotel. If you want more detail about that, just do a Google search for the name of the hotel and search the news tab. If I had known these two pieces of info, I would have pushed for us to get a different hotel.
With that said, let me describe our experience.
1. When we first got to the hotel, the 20 people in our group were the only occupants of this hotel. Yes, you read that right. We're talking about a 7-story Motel 6 with maybe 50 rooms on each floor. The conference rooms we were using were not heated on one of the coldest nights Richmond has had in a while. The staff provided heat lamps for our use (or to mock us for staying at this hotel).
2. About half of the lights in the hallways do not work.
3. Do not even think about taking the elevators. When they work (which is rarely), the doors buffet as the elevator moves. One of the elevators also started moving with the doors open. The elevators do not have the Virginia certificate in them, and I would not be at all surprised if that is because the elevators have never been inspected.
4. Six of us stayed in two adjoining rooms, and other people in our group were in different rooms on the same floor. Room 414 had a heater that worked, but the temperature could not be adjusted, so 414 was around 80 degrees. Room 412's heater did not work, so that room was about 50 degrees. By opening the doors between the rooms we were able to get a relative balance of temperature. However, 412's shower did not work, and about half of 414's lights did not work (in many cases, because there were no lightbulbs in the lamps). Oh, and 412's toilet did not work. Yes, THE TOILET AND SHOWER DID NOT WORK. Further, 412's sink had no hot water. So, only 414 actually had a bathroom.
5. Contrary to what the hotel may claim, there is no maid service. How did we obtain towels and soap for our room? I found a cart that, in a normal hotel, would be brought around by staff to clean the hotel rooms, and I acquired towels, soap, and toilet paper from it.
6. The claims that the hotel makes about having a pool and hot tub are materially false. The pool is drained, and according to some of my colleagues who stayed at this hotel before, it has been "undergoing maintenance" for over a year. Of course, that didn't stop the owners of this hotel from publishing flyers (which they gave to us) advertising their "Valentine's Day Special" which discussed in detail the pool and hot tub that they have.
7. When walking down the fourth floor hallway, you'll have to walk over a large, circular, red stain on the carpet, which has several smaller red stains leading to it. You don't have to be a forensic scientist to know that the two people shot in January are not the only people who have been shot in this hotel.
8. On our second day, many very sketchy individuals checked in -- although I honestly do not know if they actually checked in. The fact that we saw one scantily clad female (in below-freezing weather) go into a room, and also saw males go into (and then leave) said room one after another suggests otherwise to me. That night, our hallway reeked of burning marijuana, and many people were in the hallway loudly shouting at 2:30 in the morning. We called the front desk and nothing was done -- which is fitting, considering that the front desk never did anything for us at any point during our stay.
9. The fitness room should not be described as such. It is safe to assume that it has not been used in a very, very long time, by the amount of dust that has collected on all the equipment.
10. The vending machines and ice machines do not work. The hotel staff has obviously given up on them, since I found not a single one that was plugged in.
11. Some areas of the hotel were absolutely filthy and appeared that they had not been cleaned since the pool was closed, which we already established earlier was a long time ago.
12. Some of the vents in the bathrooms are not, in fact, fans. Instead, they are simply pipes that come out of the walls. Many things like this lead me to believe that this hotel is not up to code.
13. Don't believe any of the photos the hotel has on its website. The real hotel looks nothing like those pictures.
If you should feel the need to experience this hotel for yourself, allow me to provide you with a packing list: bulletproof vest, space heater, blankets, lightbulbs, towels, soap, and enough common sense to go someplace else instead.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The 100 percent smoke free Richmond Magnuson Grand Hotel is 8 miles northwest of downtown Richmond, and less than 4 miles from the University of Richmond, Henrico Doctors' Hospital, Phillip Morris- Altria, INC, Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens, and the Belmont Golf Course. Guests of the Richmond Magnuson Grand Hotel can enjoy an indoor pool, jacuzzi, on-site fitness room, and a complimentary continental breakfast. All guest rooms include free wireless internet, coffeemaker, hair dryer, free local calls, alarm clock/radio, iron and board. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Priceline, Hotels.com, Cheap Tickets, Orbitz and Tingo so you can book your Richmond Magnuson Grand Hotel reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Crowne Plaza Richmond
- Richmond Crowne Plaza