Seeing as I’m a big kid, for my 30th I went with my partner to Disneyland Paris and stayed at the Dream Castle Hotel. Pulling up to the hotel it looked pleasant and comfortable enough and the check-in process, though slow, was absolutely fine.
Making our way up to our room I noticed many signs of wear and tear, stained carpets and just in need of a little TLC. We’d paid extra for a room on the basis it was a Queen room – like all rooms in the hotel, it was non-smoking. On arrival I was dismayed to discover it was a family room with bunk beds and the unpleasant and distinctive smell of cigarette smoke – quite an overpowering smell to be honest and as a smoker even I found it repulsive. There were big stains all over the carpet and it was just an altogether unpleasant room. I didn’t even open my suitcase and immediately went down to reception and spoke to the same person who booked us in. I explained that I booked a queen room at an extra cost – he told me that I had been “upgraded to a family room” – I asked how it was an upgrade to which he replied “it has two beds”. I explained that I was a 30 year old woman travelling with my partner so in what possible world would I want a set of bunk beds and how exactly did this quantify as an ‘upgrade’ only to be met with a blank expression. I then said the smell of stale smoke in the room and got told “Ah yes, some people do smoke in their rooms, there’s nothing we can do about it”!!!!
Needless to say, my volume started to pick up at this point seeing as there were a number of people waiting to check-in.
I went back and forth with the receptionist who kept insisting that I couldn’t be swapped rooms as they were fully booked out – and the so-called-‘Queen’ rooms were of course booked out. I said that wasn’t my problem, the money had left my account and I wanted what I paid for.
Whilst all of this was going on one of the other receptionists came over to ask what the problem was and in French the two conferred and the man who was dealing with me in the first place bizarrely asked me “Have you used any of the toiletries in the room yet” – I’m sure my expression said it all and I just bluntly replied “No” and they continued and she scurried back to her area of the desk... I’m not sure whether they were going to suggest that if you use a squirt of handwash that you have to stay in the room(!)
I’m quite stubborn and refused to leave the desk until they found me alternative accommodation or brought the duty manager out to speak to me. Eventually a small woman appeared and her ‘swagger’ out to the reception desk said it all. From here there was about 15 minutes worth of arguing – me saying I paid extra on a website for a Queen room (I had all the booking confirmations where it specifically said ‘Queen Room’) to which she replied that that was impossible and the family rooms were upgrades! Now, I know this to be a load of rubbish and I asked her if she was insinuating I was lying and she replied to me in French. She then repeated what the previous receptionist said – that there were no Double/Queen rooms left and I said that was fine and they could then put me up in a partner hotel in a comparable room to which she said “we’re all booked out” and I asked if that meant all the hotels in the area were booked out and she said yes – I said I wanted to speak with the area manager for the chain “Vienna Hotels” which Dream Castle are part of – she denied being part of a chain called Vienna International (which was contradicted by a pin on lapel which said ‘VI’)!!
Now I’m not prone to violent tendencies but after all of this I was ready for going ballistic and so I tried to remain calm (although I’m sure I was speaking through gritted teeth!) and stuck to my guns that I wasn’t going to be staying in that room.
The girl stomped off in a huff and the original receptionist came out again and said “We’ll give you another room – a Double one – so you can take that” (not sure how they magically pulled this room out of a fully-booked hat!). They weren’t too happy when I said I wanted to check the room before moving my luggage there and threatened me that if I didn’t take that one I’d have to move back to the original one!!! They were just making this all up as they went along. I replied however that I’d be back down at the desk if the room was as dirty as the previous and wouldn’t move until they got me somewhere of an acceptable standard (acceptable for a 4* anyway!).
The second room was adequate – nothing special but it was clean and didn’t stink the way the other had. However for the rest of our break every time I went downstairs or passed reception I got drawn some right dirty looks and half expected to find my room ransacked when I got home at night!
Anyway, onto the rest... hotel is need of doing up in the reception area, a bit tatty. Breakfast was pretty rubbish – the cooked breakfast consisted of some sausage (which was far too garlicky – and I like garlic!), some scrambled eggs, beans I think and cooked tomato. They were all pretty rubbish – I made do with croissants and cereal. WiFi only works if your standing near reception... there were always a squad of people standing with phones/tablets there.
Location was fine, shuttle bus got you in and out of Disney easily. Point to note for anyone who would still choose to visit this hotel – get the train from CDG to Disneyland Paris stop then jump on the free shuttle to the hotel – or any others on the route. I had already booked transfers but with retrospect I would’ve just got the train. Although with retrospect I wouldn’t have booked this hotel at all!
On the second last day we did deal with a girl at reception – I think her name was Marjorie who was extremely pleasant and helpful – the rest of the staff could learn from her.
The whole experience at the hotel ruined what was supposed to be a few days of just fun. I wouldn’t return here ever again and I would go so far as recommend people and beg friends to stay another hotel, it may look quite grand from the outside and some of the pics of the rooms but I’ve stayed in much nicer Premier Inn’s at a fraction of the price when travelling with work.
Don't believe them if you're offered an 'upgrade' without seeing the room first.. in...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.