I have never in all my years of travelling been spoken to in such a belligerent manner as I was by the management of this hotel!
I have been travelling for business and pleasure for 16 years and during 2013 I spent 72 nights in hotels away from home, which is a typical year for me. I am normally a simple guest and it is very rare that I have a problem or issue such that I need to bring it to the attention of the hotel but when I do then I expect as a guest to be treated in a respectful and polite manner and not as I was in this case.
The problem started during check-in, I had booked 2 rooms through the IHG.com website (of which I am a rewards elite gold member) and after booking we saw an offer of free parking if you book through their website. So we printed of the voucher and presented it during check-in. We were however told that this was only valid if it was booked via holiday inn express Lincoln website and not any 3rd party websites which they consider IHG to be.
Well I pointed out that HI-Express is part of the IHG group and as I booked through the IHG website, which is the mother company for the brand (although they are all somewhat franchises) then I consider this to be the same.
The woman checking me in was polite enough but couldn’t/wouldn’t resolve it and she referred it to the deputy manager the next day, well this is where the problems really started.
The deputy manager was aggressive and combative from the outset and refused to listen to my point of view which I put across politely and she stated very clearly that it was MY fault and that I was totally wrong and she just seemed to have her back up and was combative with me and refused to give me the free parking as per their offer. Her argument was that no IHG property offer free parking in this country (but I wasn’t asking about other IHG properties) and that because they have to pay 15% fee to IHG compared to if booked on the HI-Express Lincoln website then they won’t honour the free parking. Of course she didn’t take into consideration my status within the IHG rewards programme or the fact that if they were not an IHG member they would not have even got my business.
In the end it was not the cost of the parking, or the fact that we disagreed and I had to pay, but the aggressive, hostile, quarrelsome and belligerent attitude of the deputy manager that I found to be offensive and dam right rude.
As I said, in the 100’s of nights I have stayed in hotels I have never been spoken to in such a manner and to be honest the woman should be ashamed of herself and I am amazed that she progressed to such a level with such a poor attitude to customer service.
As for the hotel itself, it is OK, decent for the price. The room is OK size although the bed is small and it was a bit cold, and there were already many marks on the walls and some stains on the carpets. The location is good, easy to reach by car and just 5-8 min walk to St Mark’s shopping area with plenty of other shops and supermarkets close by, as is the university.
Be careful with the room however as if you are on the side of the car park then it is very quiet, but the other side is on the main road and it can be noisy. We also found that the air con/ heater had to be turned off because of the noise.
The breakfast however was very poor quality. The range was not the best, that I can handle but some of the food was very poor and the pitiable croissants did not look good at all, as if they had been out all night! I would rather pay 5 GBP more and have a decent breakfast or 5 GBP less and get my own!
I would be worried about this hotel long term as the rooms and some of the reception areas already have lots of wear and tear showing, and giving the other issues I experienced I believe that the hotel is in a ‘race to the bottom’ to offer cheap prices and hence they are not taking care of the property correctly and in a few years I believe that this will start to quickly deteriorate, and frankly given the attitude of the management then I don’t believe that they care about their customers.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Choose the sleek Holiday Inn Express Lincoln City Centre hotel for contemporary comfort in the heart of Lincoln's business district. It's a short trip from Holiday Inn Express Lincoln City Centre to Lincolnshire Showground for your event or conference. Afterwards, you can catch up with colleagues over a drink or meal in our vibrant Lobby or dine out at the numerous restaurants on nearby Lincoln High Street. Or head back to your air-conditioned Guest room where free Wi-Fi allows you to work at your desk in peace and quiet. We're a 5-mile drive from Lincolnshire Showground, and 40 miles from East Midlands Airport. Drivers can relax as there's plenty of secure parking at our hotel. Invite colleagues to meet in our naturally lit meeting room. Or work via complimentary WiFi in the hotel's striking aubergine and cream toned public areas.Set just behind Lincoln High Street, the Holiday Inn Express Lincoln City Centre puts brand-name shopping and trendy restaurants right on your doorstep. It's a pleasant 15-minute stroll to Lincoln University and the craft shops of the cobbled Cathedral Quarter. An enticing selection of bars makes buzzing Brayford waterfront a good choice for your night out. Kick-start your day with our complimentary continental breakfast with hot items. Spend evenings relaxing with friends over drinks in the Holiday Inn Express Lincoln City Centre's stylish Great Room. Wi-Fi is free for guests who book directly with the hotel. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Express Lincoln City Centre Hotel Lincoln