What a difference good service makes
Night before last we stayed in a small hotel where the heat was broken through no fault of their own and they couldn’t fix it during the time of our stay. As a result, we had no hot water either. And yet, we enjoyed our stay there, had a good time, and would return to that hotel. It was listed as a three star facility. It was cute as a button, what I would call a boutique hotel, and the staff were friendly as can be and so apologetic for the problems. It was just delightful to stay there even with no heat or hot water. I cannot say the same for the supposed 4 star hotel where we stayed last night, Hotel Fieri, in Fier, Albania. While it looks really nice, they have recently finished their refurbishment and someone should really shoot the engineer that designed it and they should fire all their staff and send them back to staff school.
Their heat didn’t work well. The vent for the heating system was in the entrance of the room. Thus heat did come pouring out into the short hallway of the room. But the intake vent for the room to vent itself of heat in the summer was right next to the vent thus the heat came out of the vent, swirled around, and left through the other vent without ever getting over to the beds or the bathroom to warm the room. Luckily we had a large warm duvet to snuggle under. It was warmer than our fun hotel which never got above 15C. In this hotel, we got to 18C!
We were the only guests in the hotel. They had to turn on the lights for the floor when we got there so we are standing around in the dark waiting for lights before we could find our room. This turned out to be a common theme for our journey. They put us in the front of the hotel overlooking the square which was right across from a small amusement court with a lot of loud laughter and screaming. We asked if we could change rooms. The answer was no. doesn’t make sense to me that you don’t try to accommodate your only guests to make their stay a pleasant one. Luckily, the amusement park closed down by about 2 a.m. so we were able to get some sleep.
We went out to find some fruit and vegetables. As we weren’t having much luck in finding them, we stopped back by the hotel to ask where we might find the fruit stands. The hotel desk clerk didn’t speak English which is fine but apparently he thinks that also means he can ignore us standing there. We are pretty good at pantomine and were finally able to ask a person on the street where the fruit was and were pointed in the right direction. This was a total stranger who could understand us while a 4 star hotel person supposedly in the business of helping strangers couldn’t even be bothered to look up from his newspaper to see if he could help us.
Morning came and we went downstairs for breakfast. As we were the only ones in the hotel, it is to be expected that maybe they didn’t want to put out a lot of food for us but they didn’t even put out the normal things we have been getting for breakfast like yoghurt. They had cooked a couple of eggs (there are three of us) but someone had cooked them long before we showed up at the door. Nothing so appetizing as congealed fried eggs that are as cold as the north wind.
So not a pleasant stay in a town that could have been quite nice. Oh, one final note in firing the engineers, the parking lot is below the hotel with no means to enter the hotel from that level. You must carry your suitcases up two flights of stairs to get to the ground level. While I always pack so that I can carry my own bags as needed, I don’t really like to do so at 4 star facilities where I expect there to be an entrance close to the front door and where I expect to find an elevator close to the reception.
ah well, that's why we travel, to see new things and experience new places. at my age though, I want to do it in more comfort than when I was 25.
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