“Great Location. Mediocre Hotel. Not Great---Not Horrible”
I stayed here for a five-day business trip in 2012. Let me preface this by saying that I stayed here by accident...You see, I stayed at the same hotel during a trip in August 2010. The hotel was OK--nothing fantastically wonderful but nothing horribly bad either. Just kind of so-so. I again had a business opportunity to return in 2012. I booked rooms at both this property and at the Hyatt across the plaza. Both properties participate in my employer's negotiated rate plan, so there was no cost difference. It's not unusual for me to double book a room months in advance and then maybe a week or so before travel decide which to keep and which to cancel. I had decided to stay at the Hyatt only because I had already stayed here and wanted to see if the proverbial grass was greener on the other side of the fence. Well, a coworker was assigned to travel with me at the last moment, at which point all hotels were sold-out. Luckily I had an extra reservation which I gladly ceded to him--a quick call to the front desk allowed us to make the switch. Unfortunately, i confused the Hilton with the Hyatt and inadvertently ceded the "wrong" hotel. Both hotels charge for parking; this is usually a deal-breaker for me but considering the location in the heart of downtown I guess the hotels have no choice (or they'd be overrun by commuters looking to illegally park for free). This property is showing its age. I'm guessing it was built in the late 1970s or early 1980s. Nothing structurally wrong with it but the decor has a retro disco vibe. Free computer access in lobby off of front door; tiny front desk and elevator lobby steps away. Nothing grand about the lobby. There's a coffee counter (I believe it's a Starbucks) wedged in between the rear elevators and the back (street) entrance and a bar. Most of the lobby is open to the restaurant in the basement (served by separate escalators). I guess the architect was going for the drama of a vast, open atrium but it doesn't really work; it comes across as a giant enclosed space being wasted (and essential functions like the front desk, elevators and 'business center' are squished to the sides of the lobby). If memory serves from my first stay here in 2010, this property connects via underground passageways with the convention center on the next block. I believe there was free wi-fi (the lack of which is usually a deal-breaker for me). Unfortunately, there was no fridge in the room which again is usually a deal-breaker for me. And the above-mentioned paid parking was also an annoyance; if it weren't for the proximity to the event we attended I would have stayed elsewhere). Room was a decent size and clean; TV was fine, in room coffee maker was OK. Bathroom was a good size; placement was unusual along an outside wall. Location was not a problem, just unusual to find a hotel room where the bathroom isn't located right off the room entry. The layout of the hotel has all rooms on the exterior and the central core of the building houses two back-to-back elevator banks (two elevators each, for a total of four), staircases, vending machines, ice, housekeeping closet, etc. So each floor has a rectangular shaped hallway; one can walk all the way around in a complete circle. This would bother me in other cities where personal security is a worry; as I feel this layout would be ideal for a mugger to make a quick escape. As I recall, the elevators are not controlled by room keys so I don't think it's a stretch to imagine that under the right circumstances someone could enter the hotel off the street, proceed directly to an elevator and rob/mug a guest on an upper floor. Didn't eat in the restaurant or Starbucks coffee bar this stay (there's a Subway sandwich shop and a middle-eastern restaurant a block and a half away on the other side of the convention center. Also a post office). Also walking distance from busy street jam-packed with restaurants, bars, etc. so there is always an abundance of dining options. During this stay there was a major leak in the lobby that closed down the Starbucks. I believe the hotel pool is on the second floor and it (or perhaps a locker room?) sprung a leak. There were buckets all over one corner of the lobby and an emergency crew came in on a pneumatic scaffold to replaster the ceiling. Because of the 'squished' layout of the lobby, the damage zone/their work zone was uncomfortably close to the rear elevator bank and, despite their best efforts, there was a growing puddle of water. I don't want to sound nit-pickey but when I stay in a hotel (especially a respectable property in the Hilton family), I don't expect to step out of an elevator into a puddle in the lobby. Unsafe footing and wet shoes/socks is not a desirable hotel amenity in my book. One would think that all was well the following day after they removed their scaffold but no, the ceiling sprung a new leak. So once again, the orange cones went up and the pneumatic scaffold moved back into the squished lobby. I realize that maintenance crises pop up--even in the best of hotels--but the water-damage drama (and it's encore performance the next day) inconvenienced guests, looked horrible and served no other purpose than to highlight the aged, outdated structure (and need for major renovation/remodeling). BTW, I travel up to one week/month on business and as often as I can get away on personal travel and am a proud member of the Hilton Rewards program. Given a choice I will seek a Hilton property. This one, unfortunately, isn't quite up to the Hilton standards I'm accustomed to. I think Hilton either needs to sell this property or else invest in a major overhaul unless they want to keep a thorn in their side that will continuously lower their quality standards.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
January 29, 2013
Dear Terry S,
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Thank you so much for staying with us and for your candid feedback. I would like to apologize for not meeting your expectations as our team strives to always find a way to connect with our guests and to make their stay more than “OK”. I hope you understand that, like in any building, leaks will happen once in a while and, unfortunately, we had one of those episodes here during your stay. We tried to contain the water the best we could and get a crew with a lift as soon as possible in order to minimize property damage and guest inconvenience. We are hoping to be renovated in the near future and hope you can visit us again then.
Thank you for staying with us.
Gus Luna, General Manager
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.