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“Disappointing customer service experience”

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Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel
Ranked #71 of 117 Hotels in Birmingham
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Disappointing customer service experience”
Reviewed 23 May 2014

I've stayed at this hotel a few times now and never had any real problems before. On this occasion, in May 2014, on our final night there was a problem with our bathroom light. The concierge desk were excellent and got maintenance up to check immediately, but it couldn't be fixed (it being a Sunday), so we were moved to another room.

We had booked and paid for a deluxe twin room, but when we were moved, our new room was considerably smaller. Having stayed in the hotel multiple times before, in different rooms on a variety of floors, I know the difference between a deluxe room and a (smaller) standard room.

I raised this issue immediately with staff on reception, who dismissed and ignored my concerns with an almost literal "computer says no" response, insisting that the room was a deluxe room even though it very plainly was not. When checking out the next morning, I again noted that we had been given a standard room when we paid for a deluxe room, and was told that "the computer" said the room was deluxe so it must have been. I even offered to go up and look at the room with a member of staff, so they could see for themselves that it was a standard room, whatever the computer might say, but this was apparently beyond the receptionist's comprehension, so she chose to ignore it.

The receptionist eventually discounted the cost of my parking (£27), but it felt more like an attempt to get me to shut up and go away than recognition that my complaint had any validity, and didn't make up the difference in cost between the room we paid for and the room we received.

I also left a comment card detailing this incident, with my name, room numbers, and contact details, but have received no response as yet. Hence this review.

I understand that mistakes happen, and wouldn't have minded if my complaint had been treated with the slightest bit of respect. Instead I felt dismissed and ignored, which is extremely disappointing and not at all what one would expect of any customer service based establishment, never mind a Hilton.

It was particularly disappointing because the hotel staff have always been very good in the past, and the concierge desk in particular were very helpful, both when we raised the issue of the bathroom light problem (as above), and later when I realised I had left my jacket in our previous room and they helped me retrieve it.

Apart from that, the (deluxe) room was good, except that we couldn't work the air conditioning as there were no instructions, and charging for wifi access in this day and age seems unnecessarily mercenary, although there is at least wifi available in the lounge bar. The breakfast was okay but nothing special, and the conference facilities are good. Parking is rather expensive, but the restaurant and lounge bar offer good menus and reasonable prices for food (drinks are expensive, but that's to be expected).

I am back again in July, so I can't complain too much. But it is a shame when poor customer service lets down an otherwise good establishment. I hope in future reception staff will give more consideration to guests' concerns when they are raised, rather than viewing us as an inconvenience, and perhaps room 5057 could be looked at by someone who can tell the difference between a deluxe and a standard room so it can be reclassified on the computer and no one else who books a deluxe room will end up getting less than they paid for.

Room Tip: Don't accept room 5057 if you paid for a deluxe twin.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Katherine O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 28 May 2014
Dear Katherine

Firstly, may I apologise for the issue you experienced with your bathroom light. Although we offered a room change due to the fact that we were unable to immediately rectify the problem, I regret you were disappointed with this particular room . I can assure you that the room offered was indeed of the same standard but do hope the discounted parking you received went some way toward any disappointment you experienced.

I would also like to reassure you that all guest feedback is taken seriously and I regret you felt this was not the case on this occasion.

Thank you again for your feedback and we look forward to welcoming you back to the hotel in July.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
286 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 May 2014

Held a huge customer event here recently and would definitely recommend it. Attention to detail by on duty manager and her team was great. We felt thoroughly looked after. The food was excellent in all areas of the hotel. Whilst my hotel room was lovely some colleagues were startled to have their toilet "in the middle of the room". A little disconcerting for some.
Excellent location for air, rail and road. I agree with another review re the car park pricing charge, particularly for an event - it should be complimentary.
The pool area looked very inviting but sadly didn't have time to enjoy it.
The small executive lounge offering refreshments and nibbles was packed, not sure what the criteria for enjoying this facility was as extra guests could be signed in thereby removing the exclusivity.
Would definitely recommend this hotel

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Buzzybee61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 28 May 2014
Dear Reviewer

Thank you for your review and your recommendation.

I'm pleased to see that you enjoyed your dining experiences whilst staying with us and were also impressed with the service you received from our team.

Our open plan single occupancy rooms have been designed with the optimum guest space in mind - we have received hugely positve feedback regarding these room types.

Maybe next time you have the opportunity to use the pool - it's a great place to relax and unwind.

Access to our Executive Lounge is restricted to those guests occupying Executive rooms. Hilton Honors Diamond and Gold members are permitted to sign in 2 guests. I hope this clarifies any query you have in this respect.

Thank you again for your comments and we look forward to welcoming you back again soon.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newcastle, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 23 May 2014

do not get ther at 6 far too busy and huge queue. Room ok. Breakfast was good. lots of choice. Evenign meal was included in our price and it was lovely. All three courses of it. Pool looked good lots of people in it but went for sleep instead of exercise. Parking costs and car park was very busy.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Helpful?
Thank Helen F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 28 May 2014
Dear Helen

Thank you for your feedback following your recent stay.

Great to see you enjoyed your dining experiences at the hotel,. Perhaps next time you will have the opportunity to use the leisure club and pool - it's an ideal place to relax and unwind.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 May 2014 via mobile

Firstly, let's get the £14.99 cost for wi-fi out the way. This is a shocking price to ask considering Holiday Inn Express hotels offer it free as does every McDonalds, Costa Coffee, hell, even Tesco and Asda do now. This needs sorted out now.

I stayed here as I was attending a conference with a colleague and we had an allowance for dinner which was explained to us when we checked in. Upon ordering food I was told that we had no credit for dinner so I explained that they should check with reception as we were told we did have and this was highlighted on our booking email. The waitress disappeared only for her colleague to come over and tell us exactly what she did. I was a bit annoyed at this point as I had to explain that we did have and that, again, they should go sort this out with reception which he did and that was that.

So, food ordered we had a drink and waited only for both my starter and main to arrive at exactly the same time for no apparent reason along with my colleague's steak minus a steak knife so he was left to try and cut this with a blunt knife and willpower alone. Not ideal. Even the guy on the next table had to ask for cutlery for his dinner as they didn't give him any and eating a curry with fingers was a bit of a challenge.

The rooms are great and if you don't mind the dulcet tones of an air conditioning unit you'll have a good night's sleep. The guest checking out in front of me in the morning highlighted this too.

So, to sum up, good food with the lottery of maybe being given some cutlery to eat it, nice rooms and restaurant staff that have no clue what they are doing.

Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
Helpful?
2 Thank jackdaddy1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 28 May 2014
Dear Reviewer

Thank you for taking the time to post your review following your recent stay with us.

I can advise that the hotel does provide complimentary wifi access in both the Executive Lounge and Lounge areas, which many of our guests take advantage of.

I apolgosie for the confusion you experienced regarding your meal allowance and your comments regarding the serving of starter and main meal have been passed to our Food & Beverage Manager for his review with the team.

I'm glad you find the rooms meet your expectations and do hope the issues you experienced on this occasion did not detract too much from an enjoyable visit.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Antrim, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 22 May 2014

I was staying at the hotel for convenience to the Convention I was attending. I was in what they said was an accessible room, but I could not enter my room in my wheelchair without assistance. The layout of the hotel is also not good for wheelchair users. Breakfast was nice but again not suitable for wheelchair users as many items were out of reach and it was very difficult to manoeuvre past the tables and chairs. The staff were courteous and helpful and the room was very clean. But it definitely wasn't worth the cost, even at the discounted price I got my room.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Helpful?
Thank Anna-Margaret M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 28 May 2014
Dear Anna-Margaret

Thank you for taking trhe time to share your experience following your recent visit to the hotel.

I regret that you found the accessible room you were allocated not entirely suitable for your use. At the beginning of 2005 we made a number of adjustments to the hotel in order to ensure we complied with the DDA legislation. The adjustments made were then assessed by an independent consultant who himself is disabled.
.
I would like to thank you for your feedback and would like to assure you that your observations and comments will be taken on board when re-designing these rooms.

Once again my sincere apologies for any inconvenience and disappointment caused and do hope that we may welcome you back to the hotel at some point in the future.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
Reviewed 22 May 2014

This hotel is in a great location if you need to consider train, plane or car travel. The rooms are good, always clean and feel modern. You get your normal facilities expected and there is a reasonable choice of what and where you eat. The gym is quite good for a hotel and there is plenty of parking. Staff always seem to be nice. I have used the hotel many times and my comments reflect across all of those stays. I would say this is one of the nicest Hilton's i hhave stayed at in the UK.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Helpful?
Thank A8337ZSpaulg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 28 May 2014
Dear Reviewer

It's great to see you enjoy your visits to the Hilton Birmingham Metropole and thank you for taking the time to share you experience.

We look forward to welcoming you back again very soon.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ballyclare, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 21 May 2014

Had a wonderful weekend two weeks ago staff friendly efficient and always available to help. Food first class standard whether in the bar or restaurant. Rooms clean and very comfortable. Will definitely be back!!!

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Agnes B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxFlude, Manager at Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, responded to this review, 22 May 2014
Dear Agnes

Thank you for your review following your stay with us.

I am delighted that everything met with your expectations during your visit and good to know that you will return and see us again.

Kind regards

Max R Flude
Director of Operations
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel

Property: Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel
Address: National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham B40 1PP, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > West Midlands > Birmingham
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#9 Spa Hotel in Birmingham
#24 Luxury Hotel in Birmingham
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 794
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hilton Birmingham Metropole is a well-connected and easily accessible Hotel in walking distance to Birmingham International Station linking to Birmingham Airport. Regular complimentary shuttle ensures guests will only be minutes from the airport and railway station. Park & Fly options are available at the hotel. With a great location next to the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) and LG Arena, it is an ideal choice for attending events and fairs and from 2015 attending the Resorts World Complex with Casino, shopping outlets and Cinema. The hotel provides superior leisure facilities onsite with Ocean Rooms Spa, LivingWell Health club featuring Fitness Room, Indoor heated pool, Sauna and Steam room. Food and Beverage Outlets include two restaurants and a 24 hour Lounge Bar, with Room Service available all day long. Free Wifi is available in Public Areas. For those travelling as a family, enjoy dedicated family rooms accommodating 2 adults and 2 children as well as children-friendly amenities and services. Easily accessible by rail, road and air networks , the hotel is at the hub that connects Birmingham International Airport and the International Railway station with the M42, M6 and M40. Birmingham City Centre and Regional attractions such as Warwick Castle, Cadbury World and Stratford-upon-Avon are easily accessible. The hotel is also largest accommodation and convention centre outside London with 790 guest rooms and suites, 33 flexible function rooms for meeting and events from 2 to 2,000 people and an experience team. This is where it all happens. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel Birmingham
Birmingham Hilton

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