I simply loved the Burj. (It's still called that by many Sudanese and taxis generally don't even KNOW "Corinthia".) I work in Darfur and would stay there every time I passed through. My last visit was extremely disappointing. I went to check out after a wonderful 4 day/night stay, and the receptionist sent the bellman up to bring my bags down. he returned immediately with the bags. Unfortunately, when I arrived home, I found that my jewelry case had been removed from my carry bag. I was shocked to say the least. I even waited a week before I called, thinking, hoping that I had misplaced it and that it would show up - even though I vividly recalled putting it in my bag. I finally had an Arabic speaking colleague call the hotel and lodge a query. When I received no response in a week, I called again, and got a manager, who was actually English-speaking. He spent more time trying to find out whom I had called initially than trying to resolve the initial complaint.
I was extremely disappointed in the manager and his apparent lack of concern. Even though I explained that it really took a lot for me to file this complaint, and that I was pretty sure who had taken it (had to be the young Ethiopian housekeeper, who was in the room next door when I went to the elevator; as the bellman wasn't upstairs long enough, and I am pretty certain he had no idea that it was in the bag, unlike the housekeeper who had entered the room every day, and would have known of its existence). I further explained that there was absolutely no other place that the bag had stopped on its way back to my house. (I even checked the private vehicle in the unlikely event that the bag had somehow come unzipped and the case had fallen out.)
After several calls to him, which he always took, but never returned as promised, he simply told me that he had asked the housekeeper and she told him she did not take it. Really? Really. His overall attitude was not rude, but definitely expressed disbelief (as if it makes sense for me to make up such tale), and a general lack of concern for whether I, the customer, felt comfortable with his "decisions" or was at all appeased.
I truly regretted this experience. I thought (and still think for the most part) that the hotel is absolutely lovely and its local reps are truly dedicated and wonderful people. however, I must exclude management, who was offensively dismissive of what I would expect most managers in a hotel of this caliber would consider a serious matter.
I have not been back since. I'm sure it's still lovely. However, I choose not to stay in hotels where my valuables can be stolen by the housekeepers, and I, the customer, am made to feel like the criminal.
So, if you do choose to go there - do lock up your valuables so that you never have to find out that some people in Sudan actually do commit petty theft - even in top hotels. (I do reiterate again however, that I am pretty certain that the perpetrator was not a Sudanese.) And that some management at top hotels could care less.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A sleek architectural masterpiece of steel and glass, CORINTHIA Hotel Khartoum redefines the business hotel category and is the ideal environment for corporate and leisure travelers. With 230 rooms and suites, six restaurants and cafés, spa with indoor pool, Jacuzzi, steam, sauna & Turkish hammam, tennis, and squash courts, gymnasium, business centre, convention centre, Wi-Fi connection in guests’ rooms and meeting space and covered car parking lot. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Burj Al Fateh Hotel