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“1st prize in the "Most Ironically Named Hotel" category”

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Shangri-La at Mountain Gate
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Oliverea
Toronto
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“1st prize in the "Most Ironically Named Hotel" category”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2007

Where to start?
My husband and I and two of our friends decided to stay at the Shangri-La as we needed a place to stay in the area, we all love Indian food, and this place was reasonably priced. When we called to make the reservation, we were told that the rooms were not fancy, but very clean. Obviously we weren't expecting the Four Seasons, but it was made clear that the room we booked would at least be clean.
When we arrived at the hotel, we put our things in the room and noticed that the place was not as clean as we were made to believe. We didn't look too closely, but to start with, there was a ladybug infestation. The owner told us it was a problem in the area. Fine. Perhaps if the screens on the windows had been intact, there wouldn't have been so many in the room.
Spiders. On nearly every surface.
Large bug carcasses in the bathroom and main room.
Fine. We were starving and thought it may not be that bad, so we went to dinner. Food was fine. No staff - the woman who checked us in, took our order and then left, presumably to make our food while her daughter (maybe 13 years old?) took over waiting the tables. Yes, there were other people there. It became very quiet all of a sudden when the music died. We continued to eat our meals, speaking in hushed tones because of the lack of ambient noise. Very odd.
After dinner, we headed back to our room where we began to realize the true extent of the filth. That carpet has probably never seen a vacuum. No, I am not exaggerating. Someone had lit incense in the room prior to our arrival, but it didn't do anything to make the room more livable.
We all kept our socks on and eventually put our shoes on as well. It was gross.
My husband and I decided to move our bed away from the wall so we wouldn't have any creepy-crawlies coming off the walls into our bed while we slept. Big mistake. We should have left well enough alone. The furniture has obviously never been moved. There were bug bits, cocoons, mysterious nests as well as countless dustballs between the bed and the wall on the carpet. We had to jump out of the way to dodge the ladybugs that were flying at us from all angles (turns out we were on THEIR territory).
We looked behind the nightstand and there was an old box of granola bars, some empty ladybug 'shells', an earring, some toenails as well as the usual bug nests and dustballs.
My husband took pictures of the scene.
We were all very uncomfortable, but even more so when we noticed flecks of blood on the sheets and pillow cases. Not ours, either. YUCK!!!
We went to get our money back and the owner asked if she could show us another room. We agreed to look at another room, which may have been cleaner (although I think it was just decorated in lighter colours), but the carpet was still a nghtmare. We decided to leave - the analogy my friend used is when you get sick at a restaurant, they can offer you something else to eat, but you're already past the point of no return. We were so grossed out at this point, none of us would have had a good night's sleep. It was late - after 10, but we still opted to check out and drive to another town (Kingston) to stay at the Holiday Inn. Much better, and not much more money. It was paradise - a Shangri-La, if you will - compared to our first attempt.
My friend asked the owner if there was something he'd need to sign to process the refund and she said "well, I showed you another room, but you didn't want it" (implying she shoulnd't have to give our money back)!!! She claimed there was no way the room was as dirty as we had described, that she had checked the room herself and lit incense (we didn't see the point in letting her know that incense is not a cleaning product). My friend then said "we're not making this up - look, we have pictures". Her face changed when he said this and demanded to see them. She wanted my husband to hand our camera over to her, but he held on to it and took her through the slide show/horrorfest of pictures he'd taken. She demanded he delete them and said she'd give us the refund if we agreed to delete the pictures.
We are not posting the pictures here, as we said we would delete them, but you can imagine what they looked like given her insistence we destroy the 'evidence'.
No way any positive review of this hotel is real. No way.
This hotel is the exact opposite of Shangri-La. Don't stay here.

  • Liked — Getting our money back
  • Disliked — The room was a filthy, bug-infested wreck.
  • Tips/Secrets — DO NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, STAY HERE!!!!!
  • Stayed December 2006, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
12 Thank TorontoRaven
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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21 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    1
    4
    1
    2
    13
See reviews for
Families
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6
2
Business
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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    2 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 27, 2006

From the minute we called we should have known not to go but Memorial Day had our hands tied with nowhere available. When I asked the owner why the prices he was giving over the phone did not reflect the prices on his website (we paid almost $100 a night for a dump), rather than explaining, he began arguing with me and saying that I was disagreeable and did not want to give me a room. Nevertheless, we ended up going, originally for 3 nights but checked out the very next day. From the distance we saw that they had never changed the sign (they bought the property over 5 years ago) and the even the door keys still reflected this. Upon checking in the lady was very nice but tried to up sell us on a "special" relaxation massage, which again was $150 and not listed on their price menu, how odd? Walking to the room we noticed the "pool" was but a shell of whatever it used to be, it was drained and the wild life had taken over it to use as their very own resort! When we got to the room the bathroom had mold in the toilet and shower and let's not even talk about the medicine cabinet. I think they never had opened it since buying the property 5 years ago. The area was swarming with flies (not their fault but they could have had put candles sprayed or something) there were cigarette burn holes in the bed sheets and the carpets looked as if they had never been vacuumed. They did come clean the bathroom (but forgot the medicine cabinet) and then kindly left our door unlocked with all of our belongings and computer equipment free to be taken. When we came back that first night to unlocked door, no lights guiding us to our room (we stumbled with a lighter to find the key hole) and waking up to strewn garbage and old bathroom fixtures as what they deem "scenery", we knew it was time to check out! The owner gave us a hard time and we even offered to pay for the first night plus half the 2nd since we were leaving early. We thought this was more than fair. After looking around the area there are so many other places to stay in short distances I can't give one good reason why anyone should ever stay here.

  • Stayed May 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Oliverea hotels

New Orleans, Louisiana
Level Contributor
57 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 11, 2006

I feel sorry to be writing this because the people who run this hotel seem to be trying very hard. The room was clean, the beds ok, the location lovely. There was heat. But, there were also a large number of lady bugs flying around our room and crawling on the ceiling. They weren't cute. And no soap in the bathroom. We would not stay here again.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank jurypro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 4, 2006

Obviously this place is horrible!! I wish I had read these reviews before we stayed there. It's winter and we had NO heat. When we turned the thermostat up it went on in the middle of the night with a loud "clank, clank" which woke us up. We found out it woke up our neighbors too. Cold shower, run down grounds. To top it off, the small groups of ducks were attacked in the night and were walking around bleeding the next day. It was truly depressing. Worst place ever. I heard the Alpine Inn was nice, down the street.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Sarah S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2006

This is one of the worst "resorts" ever. My husband and I stayed at the resort and we couldn't wait to leave. Complete misrepresentation on their web site. Believe me, any positive comments had to be writen by the owners themselves. We were looking for a romantic weekend getaway in the fresh air. This place was a romantic as a sleeping bag with cockroaches. The cabins were a dump. The grounds were not kept up. The food was very poor. Our room had a "private porch". Give me a break! It was a run down shack with a porch that was literaly falling apart. On the porch was someone's old moldy living room couch that must have been there for years. And the pool they advertise? Filled with algae and leaves! Green water! They overcharged us for our stay and were not open to any discussion. Rooms and bathrooms were seriously in need of repair and were disgusting.
If you want to take your chances, then go ahead and book your room. Otherwise, stay clear of Mountain Gate Resort. What a pit!

  • Stayed June 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Simpsonville, South Carolina
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 4, 2005

My wife and I saw the online advertisement for Mountain Gate Lodge. We are both medical residents from New York, working long hours and we were thrilled to be taking a weekend holiday in the mountains. When we got to the Mountain Gate Lodge, we could not believe the discrepancy from the advertisement on the web. The grounds were dirty and run down. The pool was filthy and covered with leaves. The owner told us that the pool filter "just broke down yesterday", which was obviously a rediculous claim. We found our cabin to be disgusting. The bathroom was absolutely terrible and we were disgusted to even get into the bed. (And the person writing this commentary has stayed all over latin america in seriously rural areas). We were totally misled! So after the first night, we decided that we definitely were not staying for a second night...especially given what they were charging! When we received our credit card bill the following month...they charged us for TWO nights!!! I called them up, spoke with the owner, who told us that the charges were correct. I assured him that I would know if we stayed for 2 nights and not one. Well, I did everything possible to get our money back including calling the Better Business Bureu of that county and my Visa card provider. But the owner must have forged or copied my signature onto a different credit card receipt for the 2 day total amount. There was nothing we could do and VISA declared the charges valid. I wrote to the owner every day imploring him to return our stolen money and calling him a dishonest thief. But to no avail. We will never see that money again.
To whoever is reading this review, please do not stay at the Moutain Gate Lodge. ANYWHERE else that you can stay will provide you with a much better resort getaway and hopefully you will not be" taken for a ride" as we were. Best of luck to you...

  • Stayed August 2002
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
14 Thank SportBikeDoc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 18, 2003

Mountain Gate Lodge is dishonest; in fact, absolutely criminal! The manager flat out lied to us! We had a caravan of four couples with a total of six children aged 13months to 6 years between us. The grounds looked run-down with areas of over-growing grass. The "pool" had about two inches of water covered with overgrowing algea on the base. The pool gate was broken and thus a very dangerous area became quickly and easily accessible by any child able to walk (and thus fall onto an algae-covered concrete floor)! Seeing it was already nearing 8pm and getting dark, we decided on a one night stay. We told the manager we had small children and wished only to stay one night and insisted that we must have reliable AC and hot water. He assured us all these services were available in all rooms! We decided to view the rooms first and the manager let us see only one room and then gave us a set of four rooms elsewhere on the property. There was no hot water in any rooms; and functional AC in only one of the rooms. By the time we realized this, we had already unpacked many of our belongings and there was no way to address any of our children's needs (absolutely no hot or even slightly warm water and a very uncomfortably humid August without AC!). Upon our raising concerns for his dishonesty, the manager told us that all of the amenities were fully functional when he gave us the rooms and that we had sabotaged the facilities! We all decided that we would leave the premises immediately and asked for a refund of the one night's stay he had already charged to all our accounts. He refused emphatically. At this point it was already past 8pm and the children were very tired and restless after a long day's travel. We left and found another lodging and are all still fighting the charges that still remain on our accounts for a stay we never even had at the Mountaingate Lodge. This establishment is absolutely criminal! Stay away from it!

Helpful?
16 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Shangri-La at Mountain Gate

Property: Shangri-La at Mountain Gate
Address: 212 McKenley Hollow Rd, Oliverea, NY 12410-5306
Location: United States > New York > Oliverea
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Oliverea
Number of rooms: 243
Also Known As:
Shangri La At Mountain Gate

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