Firstly whilst I recognise that it was not Mercure's fault for the main problem; the lack of compassion and leniency was.
I was due to stay at Mercure Greenwich on 31/5/14. It was to be a weekend with my mother, celebrating the completion of 3 years of nursing training. Unfortunately due to a death within the family we were unable to attend. I did try to ring the hotel to inform them of our non-attendance but they neglected to answer the phone. Obviously due to the circumstances I was unable to sit on the end of the phone until they decided to answer, plus it should only require one phone call.
The following day I emailed the email address stated on the mobile version of the website asking if due to the exceptional circumstances would they mind refunding the price paid or letting us attend another day (our preferred option). After several days of no response, I went back to the website on my laptop. The website had had a redesign or was different to their mobile version. It included a new and totally different email address (the email address is still different on their mobile version website). I forwarded my original email to the new address.
They responded the following day stating that they could refund the amount but only on the say so of Lastminute.com (the travel agent I booked through) and with a copy of the death certificate. This in itself is insulting as it implies that they don't believe the reason for our non-attendance and is accusatory that I would lie about such thing. Even if I could supply the death certificate, I wouldn't because it is so personal to the family and cannot guarantee its confidentiality. As it is, the death certificate is yet to be issued, awaiting a post mortem and coroners inquest so would be some time before it is issued. I explained the circumstances but still no help stating that as the reservation had gone as no show then nothing could be done and to seek a refund from LastMinute.com. As previously mentioned it would not of gone as a no show if they decided to answer their phone. A phone call made even in distressing circumstances. To insinuate that I'm the kind of person who doesn't show up for things without informing people is the second insult.
Some people will be reading this and thinking well its not Mercure's fault that we didn't attend and I have already acknowledged that, it isn't their fault. During this 2 day trip to London we were meant to be having afternoon tea, theatre tickets and a spa day the next day. The company for the afternoon tea have refunded, the theatre tickets and spa day have very kindly swapped the date to another day. What is even more disappointing is that we cannot attend the new date as we have no accommodation. This was a one off trip for celebrating an achievement so we cannot afford to pay for the hotel again. The new date we have for the spa day and theatre is midweek so I find it unlikely that the hotel will be fully booked, its not as if its a weekend.
Mercure do have a cancellation/amendment room policy if you book directly with them but because I booked through an agent it doesn't apply. They were prepared to refund but only on production of the certificate of which I've stated above why it cannot be produced, regardless of the fact it is insensitive to ask for it.
I've left this review as I find it poor that a 4* star hotel with normally great reviews can be so uncompassionate and insensitive toward exceptional circumstances.
I can only comment on two things about the hotel. When booking for parking they charge £12 to those who haven't booked directly through them (found this out after reading TripAdvisor reviews), its free if you book with them. When booking the parking, the staffs English wasn't brilliant and it should not require a 10 minute phone call to do so.
Think its a case of wont help rather than cant help.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located in Royal Greenwich, DoubleTree By Hilton London Greenwich is just a 15 minute walk from the Cutty Sark, Maritime Museum and near the O2 Arena. Close to Canary Wharf, Excel Exhibition Centre and with great transport links to Central London, this London Hotel is easily accessible via the DLR from Greenwich station and is near to Greenwich Market and the observatory. This 4* hotel offers free wi-fi in all bedrooms, the restaurant and bar. Use of the hotel gym is free for all guests. ... more less
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