We stayed at this hotel for one night on Saturday 28th July, this was a celebratory weekend for our wedding anniversary.
First of all I would like to compliment the hotel on how spotlessly clean it all was, the room was extremely comfortable and a great size, with the appreciated help of 2 particular members of staff (Jenni [--] and Faye [--]) we also managed to get a fantastic dock view, which was totally amazing, thank you to these 2 lovely people for being so helpful during the several emails back and forth prior to our visit, I just wanted everything to be perfect for our celebration and we was so looking forward to our stay.
However unfortunately on a very negative note I have to raise my concerns in regards to the very unpleasant experience we received on return to the hotel after the night out in the city.
We arrived back to the dock side entrance at approximately 1:45am after being unable to get a taxi back, it was raining slightly at this time so we had got a little wet but not so that we was uncomfortable by this point, to our total disbelief the card swipe machine on the door would not let us in to the building, we then noticed a sign that stated the door is locked after 11:00pm and that we had to use the front entrance.
The front entrance has a cut through from the dock side, however this was also locked, no idea why? all I can assume is that it was to annoy customers as much as humanly possible! We had no alternative but to have to go back in the rain as the access to the front entrance was not undercover. The rain by this time had become extremely heavy and we subsequently became dripping wet within a very short time, not only was we then very uncomfortable but extremely irritated by the inconvenience.
When we finally managed to get back to the hotel front entrance we was greeted by a very unpleasant night porter on the door, I voiced my concerns about what had happened and he repetitively kept on saying that the docks are always locked after 11:00, this was not helping the situation and he was only making us feel even more annoyed, he would not let us in until we told him our room number, therefore we was still standing out in the rain, he did not seem at all interested or concerned about the ordeal we had just encountered, it seemed as though it was more a case of us inconveniencing him.
After we finally got in to the building another annoyed resident followed shortly behind us and voiced exactly the same problem, again the night porter did not show any interest, never any room for apology or reasoning.
I do not understand the reasoning why these doors were locked, the swipe machine should be for resident access to the building at all times, if people do not have a swipe card they are unable to gain access anyway, what is the use of having this facility if it is not going to be used correctly or more to the point not at all? We had not used the swipe card at all throughout the day as the door was left open for anyone to gain access, therefore we did not see this sign beforehand, why did Reception not advise us of this on check in?.
After eventually getting to our room and drying off it was 2:30am before I managed to get to sleep, only then to be woken up at 7:00am to the sound of children shouting and screaming up and down the corridor, I managed to get back to sleep at approximately 7:30 and again was woken up at 8:00 to the sound of children crying loudly, I am normally a heavy sleeper so this would explain to the extent of noise it made to wake me up.
After 4 ½ hours sleep I decided to get up as there was no point in trying to rest anymore, I was totally exhausted, luckily my husband was driving home so that was a relief as I dread to think what may have happened if I had to drive for 2 hours in this exhausted state.
After breakfast we checked out, the young gentleman behind the Reception desk looked as though he really did not want to be there and had no enthusiasm or customer service skills at all, all he said to us was “yes that’s fine it’s all paid for”!!, whatever happened to manners? I have stayed in many hotels in my lifetime and I have to say that never have I ever encountered this experience where the Receptionist never:
1. Says hello/Good morning/afternoon
2. Asks if everything was ok with your stay?
3. Says have a safe journey/ we hope to see you again
4. Says thank you and bye.
On that note I was glad to just be getting out of there, so there was no point in voicing my concerns at that time, noone was obviously going to be interested.
We found that the lack of customer service seemed to be the same for a lot of the staff, even on check in the Receptionist did not have any manners, we was advised by Faye [--] via email prior to our stay that we may be able to check in early depending if the room was available, but there are no guarantees, after arriving at approximately 11:45 we was served by a lady who just said “the rooms not ready but you can leave your luggage here,” now of course the room not being ready was acceptable but the attitude of the Receptionist was not, a sorry or smile to go with it would have been good customer service. The lady in question then took our bags to the storage room behind the Reception desk, I then asked what time we should come back, as the door was closing she replied 2:00, she never came back out to apologise for closing the door on us!
It is such a shame that the hotel had so many errors that could easily be rectified, I should have gone home feeling really happy that we had a great night out and a perfect weekend; instead I was exhausted and annoyed as it was totally spoiled by the level of service caused by the hotel.
I have since emailed the hotel with a complaint and it was acknowledged as received by Jenni [--], she said she was sorry for what had happened and that she will forward the email to the General Manager (Helen [--]), I was also issued Helen's email address to follow up on this, after several days of not hearing anything from Helen I emailed her and said that I still await her feedback, to which I was further ignored.
After 2 weeks of waiting for a reply from Helen I then emailed the Head Office, the email was acknowledged as a read receipt by Chris [--], again I heard nothing for 5 days, to which I followed this up and stated that if I did not hear from them by close of play yesterday then I would be adding my points on Trip Advisor, I have heard nothing again, so it seems by their ignorance that Holiday Inn Express do not obviously care about their reputation, whatever response I get now (if any) means nothing to me as it would only be to made to look as though I am totally dramatising, which I will add that I am not, It takes a lot for me to complain.
We will certainly be coming back to Liverpool again in the near future as we felt the locals generally was lovely people and made us feel welcome, however most of the people within the hotel had the adverse affect, therefore after such an unpleasant experience we definately would not return to this hotel on our return back to this fantastic City, I will stay at the Premier Inn where they guarantee a good nights sleep or your money back.
Thank you again to Jenni [--] and Faye [--], the only 2 members of staff that care about Customer Service, all your help was much appreciated, and all the best to you.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC