I booked to stay in the Mercure, Kensington for one night over a weekend. Having used Mercure previously both in the UK and through Europe, I had trust in their brand and had always experienced good quality hotels and customer service.
We arrived within the stated check in time, but quite late on in the evening at about 11pm (we had seen a show, had dinner etc). Upon arrival, we were told that our pre-booked and pre-paid for room was unavailable, due to flooding. Obviously this kind of incident can't be helped, so I had asked what alternative rooms were available. Unfortunately there were no other rooms, and the receptionist advised that we would have to move to the Mercure hotel in Paddington, where a complimentary coffee would be waiting for us.
Ignoring that fact that a complimentary Espresso at midnight was not exactly the ideal blow softener, I asked if there was a hotel nearer to Kensington - a location that we'd specifically chosen. I was told there was not, without further explanation. At this point I grew suspicious of the 'flood' story and asked to see the room - I was told this was not possible. To me it was clear that Mercure had taken the paid booking, seen that we had not arrived and checked in, assumed that we would not turn up, and then sold our room to somebody else. I relayed my suspicion to the receptionist, who proceeded to point me to an A3 page of terms and conditions and book me a taxi to Paddington - complimentary of course! At this point I simply asked for a refund - after all we were not getting the room that we had paid and booked for, and I certinaly did not want to stay anywhere near a Mercure hotel that evening. I was told this was not possible, and again pointed towards the terms and conditions. To me, paying for something and not receiving it gives you the right to request your money back.
I laid out my complaint to Mercure in email form, but never received a response from them - further adding to my frustration.
All in all, the entire experience was a demonstration in deplorable customer service from beginning to end. I would never stay with Mercure hotels again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- We currently have off site parking next to the hotel at £30 a day.(T&C- Subject to availability) ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Mercure London Kensington Hotel London