As this proves to be a lengthy review, I ask that you read it to the end to fully appreciate all of the aspects of the review. There were allot of “Pros & Cons” regarding our stay, and I thought about leaving some things out, but decided that a true review is the only way to let others know what happened & how the matter was handled. I am not only writing this for TripAdvisor.com, but also for the corporation of Marriott and the Hotel Group.
1. My first interaction was when I tried to book our stay. I pay a LARGE amount of money to have an American Express concierge handle my reservations at locations. I told them to book two nights at this hotel in the best room that they offer. After booking the room, I called the hotel to confirm the reservation, only to find out that I did not have the best room that they offer. I was told by Katelyn (Hope I spelled it right), that the hotel does not offer these rooms to travel sites for discounts. I explained that I was not looking for a discount, only the best room available. I had to call American Express back, cancel the reservation, and book directly with Katelyn for the room. The Marriott web site described the room as a “King Suite”. This was to be a suite with a separate bedroom, river view, wet bar, and a jetted tub,”…Big enough to accommodate two…”
I think that the Marriott should review this policy, as most people book stays through some sort of travel site. Hard to book the “High end” rooms, when they aren’t even offered. This room is $209. Per night. Katelyn was VERY polite and handled the situation well.
2. Upon arrival, we were impressed with the location and appearance of the hotel. It is located right on the river with nice views and beautiful landscaping. There are paved walking paths that separate the hotel from the river. You can enjoy a walk or bikes are available too.
Note: I counted no less than 6 handicap parking spaces located at convenient locations.
We walked in to a clean nice reception area. We noticed a lounge area, breakfast area, business area (with PCs available), guest seating area, as well as a beautiful view from the back large windows. We were helped by Katelyn again, and were soon on our way up to the room. Note: This location is only 8 years old.
3. This is where it takes a “Snag” in our stay. I was pulling the luggage cart into the room, took 3 steps, and my foot literally came out of my shoe! My shoe had stuck to the carpet! A previous guest had spilled a full 2 liter bottle of pop or something onto the carpet? My wife has a phobia about cleanliness, and quickly started looking throughout the room. Most of it was clean, but the maids must have had blinders on to not see the spilled pop! The affected area spanned 3-4’ in diameter. I returned the cart downstairs and brought our concerns to Katelyn’s attention. She was shocked, and sent the maids right up. Note: Moving was not an option. No other rooms like this on the top floor.
We both laughed when the maid showed up with a spritz bottle and a hand towel to clean it. She did not speak the best English, but looked at it and said “Big party….ha ha ha…must been big party”. Really? I asked her if they had a carpet cleaning machine…..only to get a blank look. We were planning on going next door to Anthony’s for dinner. They could have gone in, cleaned it, and all would have been well. Instead, she sprayed the spritz bottle a few times and rubbed with the hand towel. We sent her on her way and placed a bath towel over the affected area. And there it remained for the rest of our stay. When we went back down to the reception, and showed them the pictures, Katelyn discounted the room by $30. Per night. This was nice, but It is too easy anymore for the staff to discount, rather than simply making sure that everything is right to begin with. It was also shift change, so this is when we met Kaylee. She should be complimented for her great attitude and for representing your hotel in a positive fashion.
4. Pros and cons of location & room:
Location Pros: River view, walking paths, 1000’ feet from a GREAT seafood restaurant (Anthony’s), boat launch area, clean pool & sauna, & exercise room.
We enjoyed a cocktail in the lounge area and some food is also available. I enjoyed a chicken Cobb salad that was prepared wonderfully. Room service is also available.
We partook in breakfast the following morning. They had a server who will make eggs or omelets to order, potatoes, bacon & sausage, fresh fruit, several muffins & bread items, and great coffee & juices.
Note: We were VERY impressed with whoever the maintenance man is. We never caught his name, but he always flashed a great smile and a friendly greeting as he passed you. He should be patted on the back, and management should notice that EVERYONE on their staff can make a good (or bad) impression on your guests.
Location cons: Upon check in, more time should be spent promoting the establishment and what it has to offer. Although I may be familiar with the Marriott, most may not. Business area, when breakfast starts, when lounge opens & that food is available, pool hours and location, Etc.
While eating breakfast I noticed that the beautiful view was blocked by lots of smeared handprints and generally dirty windows. As this is one of the bestselling points of the location, more time should be spent on the cleaning of them. I also overheard two of the waitresses talk about how she had worked the last 12 days in a row. Makes me wonder how the quality of her work could be when she is “Burnt out”. The staff should be reminded that patrons see and hear everything.
Room pros: 2 private balconies, comfortable king size bed & pillows, fridge & microwave, wet bar area, 2 flat screen TVs, gas fireplace, thermostat controlled heat and air, coffee pot & hair dryer, free Wi Fi, nice desk, and great river view.
Room cons: No bathroom fan, the jetted tub is TINY!! The tub is just a standard 5’ tub that is just a little wider and deeper. They advertise that it is big enough to “….accommodate two people…” two kids maybe! That was a total rip off. The biggest complaint is over the maid service and the little things that can immediately change a person’s perception of the room. As you will see from the photos, it’s the little things that could be fixed for very little time and money. This room is supposed to be the best that they have to offer!
So as an example: The fridge has several dents in the stainless door. This should be replaced or exchanged with one out of a low end room. There are several “Dings & scratches” in the wet bar area. Some Old English would easily cover these up and make a much better presentation to the guest. There are gaps between the light covers and the fire sprinkler spouts in the ceiling. There is also a crack from one end of the wet bar ceiling to the other. Maintenance could easily put a small bead of caulking along these areas to cover it up. Some of the wallpaper is bubbled up next to the living room ceiling. This could easily be cut and re-glued to give a much better appearance. There are cobwebs down on the corner of sliders too. The couch is old and VERY uncomfortable. The living room slider was off the track when we arrived and, even after fixing it, was hard to open and close. Might suggest some new rollers or some lithium grease.
So in closing, the obvious question is whether I would recommend this location to others….Yes.
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- Also Known As:
- Courtyard By Marriott Richland Columbia Hotel Richland
- Richland Marriott
- Richland Courtyard
- Courtyard Richland Columbia