I'm a Platinum level with IHG and don't expect too awful much - heck, most of my IHG stays are at Holiday Inn Express - but when booking a Crowne Plaza, I expect at least some minimal effort at check-in to recognize my status and at least try to provide some of the benefits I've supposedly earned by staying over 50 nights at various IHG properties.
Unfortunately, check-in at this Crowne Plaza in Old Town Alexandria felt like I was checking into an alternate universe. The clerk was completely clueless about my reservation and status, and while he literally stared at his computer screen for two minutes, hoping something would magically appear, two other staff members carried on a conversation about who was dating whom three feet away. When I asked about a possible upgrade (one of the few valuable perks of being a Plat at a full-service IHG hotel), the clerk said "We do those first come first served" - no recognition of the fact that my reservation had been made two weeks prior. I wasn't checked in so much as processed.
I did receive an "amenity" at check-in, provided as an afterthought after finally receiving my key some 15 minutes after check-in was started: A bottle of water, an apple, and a bag of regular potato chips. I estimate this "amenity" cost the hotel 60 cents to provide.
It was all kind of pointless from there - the standard room I received was clean but dated; there are no HDTV channels on the TV system; bathrooms are small and dated. Nothing ever rose past the level of average.
I reported my experience through IHG's guest satisfaction system and received a voice mail from a bored manager; when I returned the call I had to go through a "press 1, press 2... press 9" system that ended in an incoherent recorded request to leave a message, which I did. There has been no further response from this hotel. No doubt there will be a boilerplate response left here in the same bored, inept manner as the staff has demonstrated so far.
Hotels are all about service and experience - the one-on-one interactions with the guest. This hotel simply doesn't get that.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to our New Old Town Alexandria Hotel You'll enjoy a convenient location and top-quality amenities when you stay at the newly renovated Crowne Plaza of Old Town Alexandria. Our hotel is only two miles from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). Located near Washington DC, our Alexandria, VA hotel is in close proximity to many attractions. We're only eight blocks from the shops and historic homes on Old Alexandria's revitalized waterfront. Walking tours of the city of Old Town and Potomac River Cruises of the nation's capital's monuments begin just a few miles from our Alexandria hotel. Our hotel near Washington, DC is also ideal for business travelers because we're a short drive from many corporate offices, like Robbins Gioia, International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Pentagon and the many museums, bureaus and government offices of Washington, DC. We also offer the convenience of eight meeting rooms, a 24-hour business center and high-speed, wireless Internet access. While lodging in Alexandria, Virginia, hotel guests can enjoy a relaxing setting with our fitness center, Sleep Advantage program with new, comfortable beds and spectacular views of the Potomac and city from many rooms. From our hotel restaurant, Chequers, to our complimentary shuttles to the airport, Metro/Subway and King's Street, a convenient stay awaits you at the Old Town Alexandria Crowne Plaza. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Crowne Plaza Alexandria
- Alexandria Crowne Plaza