+ new hotel with great interior design
+ 10 mins walk to Bullring
- Indifferent customer service
- Hit and miss food - and expensive
- A triumph of style over function
I stayed twice, for a week with work on my second trip. The hotel looks beautifully designed but after a while, a series of minor deficiencies and annoyances begin to wear. Non are major but they add up to a hotel that needs to pull its socks up a bit.
The hotel is a bit like the City Inn/Mint/Doubletree in Manchester - but without the customer service or reliability of decent restaurant food.
The TV in the room has some over-elaborate system, but basic Freeview channels like Sky News are missing and all rooms get BBC1 for East Anglia - this wasn't fixed in two weeks.
There is a gap where the missing mini bar would go in each room. You don't even get a pen and paper in the rooms. Or a glass for the bathroom. Even the complimentary little bottle of water doesn't get replenished over whole week. Used room service plates get left in the corridors all night. It's a bit mean for rooms costing over £100+/night.
The main disappointment is over the restaurant and general customer service. The receptionists were mostly nice but managed to get taxi bookings wrong a few times, didn't seem very confident with guests or remembered to follow-up on items.
The restaurant meet and greet staff/managers seem to be in the wrong job. They barely acknowledge guests as others have commented. At breakfast they are not on top of basic replenishment of essentials like plates and glasses. The food was hit and miss at breakfast and dinner - sometimes very good, sometimes very overcooked and greasy. The ratio was 50/50 over a week. And it's definitely not cheap. There's also a £5 charge from bringing room service up in the lift. The cafe is permanently shut due to lack of custom - so there's only the expensive full restaurant or a few bar snacks. There is nothing within a 5 min walk as an alternative.
Overall, the building is great but they need to work on staff training and better recruitment of restaurant managers, fix basics like the TV and stop penny pinching in the rooms with things like pens, water and glasses.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel La Tour has 174 luxurious bedrooms. A floor specially engineered for business conferences.Five-star customer service. Conveniently located in the heart of England's second city. What more reason do you need to pick Hotel La Tour Birmingham? For a contemporary twist on a great British tradition immerse yourself in the unique dining experience that is Marco Pierre White's first 'English Chophouse'. This exciting restaurant concept has its origins in 18th century London when chophouses were created for businessmen to conduct their affairs over hearty plates of cooked meats washed down with fine wines and ales. ... more less
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