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“Great hotel let down by whoever signed off the room refurb plans”

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Grand Central Hotel
Ranked #39 of 93 Hotels in Glasgow
Reviewed 27 June 2014

The GCH is very grand and very central and has been undergoing major refurbishment. The receptionist who checked me in proudly announced that I'd been upgraded to a Junior Suite and that I'd be in a room which had just been finished. I'd be its first occupant. It was on the fifth floor (a floor so new that there are no signs to it until you get there). Weaving my way round the corridor it became apparent that what were formerly lots of little rooms had been grouped together to form little suites. There were lots and lots of anonymous doors with no numbers or handles which was a little spooky at first in the relative gloom of the very dark painted wood and the low lighting level. Opening the door to room 510 I was met by a plate glass door leading to the spacious shower room. To the left was the sleeping area - large enough for a bed under the eaves, and with what appeared to be a very very large mirror. The room was the width of the bed plus two bedside tables. The first thing I noticed were the two power sockets at each side of the bed. "Hurrah", I thought, they've had someone sensible in to do the refurb and are now catering for the multi-device owning business traveller. The mirror was weird, with a blue hue, and because it was opposite the window, over the LHS side of the bed, simply threw a silhouette on to the surface. "Wardrobe?" I wondered. To the RHS side of the shower room was a sitting area which contained a rather overpowering unit on top of which sat the TV. There was a small partition and I peeked round the corner expecting to find a clothes hanging area. Nope, it contained an expensive looking leather wing back chair, a small table, an absolutely huge mirror, and a rack for my suitcase. I went back to the bedroom and poked at the mirror in case it was concealing the wardrobe. Nope, not there either. Eventually, on investigation, it turned out that the bit TV unit also had a hanging area. But no hangers. Housekeeping were called and swiftly delivered. Meanwhile, I switched on the TV. "No signal". Hmmmm. I got my laptop out. There wS no "desk", as such, but there was a larger round tavle ad the end of the chaise, Nd also a round tub seat. However, the socket beside the table was proprietary - probably for cleaning staff. Behind the chaise were an assortment of sockets, including four standard plugs. So I trailed my cables across the chaise and plugged in. The more I started to actually use the room, the more I became angry - an awful lot of money had been spent on it but little care had been given to considering the liveability of the place. Here is a summary of the many little things that, with a moment's practical thought, could have been properly designed:

Bedroom: the window was in the eaves, and over the LHS of the bed. The cords controlling the blinds were not against the wall, but in the recess in the middle of the bed, necessitating standing on the bed to adjust blinds. The mirror turned out to be a TV, but being opposite the window could only be viewed by stepping on the bed and closing the blinds.
Shower room: the shower door had an integral towel rail. The door opens inwards which means if you have turned on the overhead shower rosette, on opening the door, the door and your carefully hung towel become soaked. There was also a towel rail over the sink but it was, err, tucked behind one of the two large lampshades either side of the expansive mirror. Had it been centred on the wall it would both have looked better and reduced the risk of breaking the shade.
Seating area: the TV stand-cum-wardrobe was large and dysfunctional. Having had hangers delivered, on hanging a couple of day dresses there I found that both trailed on the floor - it was not tall enough. The desk was nowhere near any usable power sockets, neither, for that matter, were ANY of the mirrors. The other side of the TV stand-cum-wardrobe included a tray with kettle, etc. however, the only place where the kettle could stand AND be plugged in was the modest bedside table. The only lighting was in the alcove area, not in the main room.

I posted on Facebook and Twitter as these many little irritating things emerged and, to his credit, the duty manager picked up the posts, identified me, and got straight on the phone. He came up and I took him through the things I'd identified at that point. I told him that I felt the hotel had been badly let down by whoever had refurbished the room. The finishing a were lovely. The colour scheme calming and appropriate to the building. But it was not a room designed for easy and effective habitation. It was as though there was a shopping list which went:
10(ish) plug sockets (normal)
2 wall to ceiling mirrors
Chaise
Large table
Small table
Standard lamp
Posh leather chair
Unit for clothes, ironing board, minibar fridge and coffee/tea making, oh, and for standing a TV on top.

With a final instruction: distribute randomly.

Someone came and "fixed" the TV. It turned out that it couldn't t sit on top of the unit because that was not where the plug and arial point were situated. So it was put on the round table, and the cables were then threaded behind the chaise on to the wall behind.

Chaps need a razor socket in the bathroom (present here). By the same measure, us lassies would like a plug within decent proximity of a mirror. And many business travellers need a desk with an adjacent plug. And we all want to plug the kettle in and have a cuppa. And we don't want to be stepping over cables, sleeping beside the kettle, or reaching for a soggy towel when we step outside the shower.

On the plus side, the staff were friendly.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
3  Thank Hill_Resident_SE14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

Thank you for taking the time to leave such a thorough review of your time at the Grand Central Hotel.

We rely on feedback from our guests, especially with regards to our new bedrooms, to ensure that we can improve upon our service standards, and I thank you for taking the time to pass your on.

kind Regards
Laurie Nicol

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,212 - 2,218 of 3,952 reviews

Reviewed 27 June 2014

I've stayed at the Grand Central multiple times and it's been a bitter sweet experience for me. I've had problems 4 out of the 6 times I've stayed, but the staff are fantastic, helpful and so willing to go out of their way to help that I've never really minded. The rooms are spacious and comfortable and the decor of the entire building is visually and structurally stunning. The restaurant is fantastic and what a great selection for breakfast. The restaurant staff were so accommodating with my gluten allergy - providing fresh baked produce. The champagne bar is great - pricey, but you get what you pay for! Bar staff are so lovely and friendly. It's a total touch of high class but with Glasgow's friendly welcoming atmosphere.

Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank Ami B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

Thank you for taking the time to leave your fabulous review of your experience at the Grand Central Hotel.

It was a delight that you enjoyed your time with us, and I hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back in the future.

Kind Regards
Laurie Nicol

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2014

Their newly finished front door area has no level access, so don't have heavy bags, let alone stick, crutch etc - 2 big steps lie in front of you. No member of staff to help at the busy arrival time. Took 15 mins for luggage to follow me to my room despite me explaining needed to check in and leave for a meeting immediately, obviously can't cope with demand.
At dinner that night entrance for dinning room was via 2 flights of steps up and down from the bar, but they were by-passed the following morning for breakfast, same people same access issues, so much thought not given to these issues.
No air - con and window opened 10cm.
No one met us for the meeting the next day, she eventually crashed into the room over an hour after I'd sought someone to explain venue access, fire procedures etc. We'd started - no thought given how to solve this except she took a large breath and launched into what she thought needed to be said, we just sat there in surprised silence.
Lunch was delivered to the room in a paper bag with some of the items we'd ordered, all items had been bought in, - no effort or preparation by hotel, sandwiches could have been bought from any high street, cost £8.95 per person! I had a bottle of cheap drink, a small packet of awful crisps, salad and 2 nasty tiny doughnuts - yup for £8.95.
At check in confirmed details of the booking, which couldn't be found the next morning.
Have never given such a negative review - it was clean, food good, just don't bother if you have big bags, access issues or want to use for a meeting etc.

Room Tip: Ask for a quite room, I looked out onto glass roof of station, but it was quiet.
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Service
2  Thank BarbaraK10UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

Thank you for taking the time to pass on your comments.

We rely on feedback from our guests to continually review and improve upon our service standards, and I thank you for taking the time to pass yours on.

Kind Regards
Laurie Nicol

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 June 2014

We stayed for 2 nights and really enjoyed the hotel.It was central with cheap parking in the hotel recommended car park.The room was comfortable,modern and clean.The hotel staff were all very nice.Being so close to the railway shops was also very good.I believe the cost was very good value.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
Thank Rob B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

Thank you for taking the time to leave your fabulous review of your experience at the Grand Central Hotel.

It was a delight that you enjoyed your time with us, and I hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back in the future.

Kind Regards
Laurie Nicol

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2014

I went to a wedding here last month, the room was beautiful and the service was good.
A far grander hotel then you would ever expect from what you can see from the station.
The food was excellent for large scale catering and the bar prices were reasonable.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Roadtrippergod
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

Thank you for taking the time to leave your fabulous review of your experience at the Grand Central Hotel.

It was a delight that you enjoyed your time with us, and I hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back in the future.

Kind Regards
Laurie Nicol

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2014 via mobile

I stayed here for 2 nights for business. Never again. There was (unusually) hot weather in Glasgow that week - the Scots don't seem to know about air conditioning. The room was boiling. It was also tiny. It overlooked Hope Street and it seemed that night the entire city was out partying outside the hotel. The windows wouldn't open much but then the noise would come in from the bars then when that finished at 4, the traffic started. I literally didn't sleep a wink. The next night was similar but I went out and bought earplugs.

The bathroom was ok. The products good plus lots of towels but for the price there are no nice touches to the room. Nothing that screams comfort or elegance - the room apparently was only done up in recent years but it seemed a bit battered in places and dingy.

Breakfast wasn't great. You pay an extra £10 for it but it's nothing very special.

The service was fine. The hotel is HUGE so I rarely saw staff but they were nice when I saw them.

I was very disappointed in the hotel. I had one of the worse nights sleeps I've ever had then had to go to work. Not ideal. I know it's central but I've lived in central London for 12 years and i'm used to noise but this was on a different scale.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
6  Thank CRKSE4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 27 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to pass on your review of your stay at the Grand Central Hotel.

I was dissapointed to read that you did not enjoy your stay with us. With regards to air conditioning, as a Grade A listed building we are currently no authorised to install a system oweing to the invasive nature of the procedure. As a busy city centre hotel we do sometimes deal with a degree of external noise, and I am sorry that this affected your sleep quality.

Thank you again for your feedback.
Laurie Nicol

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2014 via mobile

Didn't stay here however attended for a large wedding. Tastefully & stylishly decorated, attentive staff & spacious surroundings. Good location however, be warned, drinks are very expensive & staff aren't so keen on returning your change which is rude. Overall had a fabulous time & would recommend.

Stayed: June 2014
2  Thank VMMT53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Laurie N, General Manager at Grand Central Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2014

Thank you for taking the time to leave your fabulous review of your experience at the Grand Central Hotel.

It was a delight that you enjoyed your time with us, and I hope we have the opportunity to welcome you back in the future.

Kind Regards
:Laurie Nicol

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 Grand Central Hotel

Address: 99 Gordon Street, Glasgow G1 3SL, Scotland
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Glasgow > City Centre , Merchant City
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#20 Luxury Hotel in Glasgow
#21 Business Hotel in Glasgow
#24 Family Hotel in Glasgow
#26 Romantic Hotel in Glasgow
Price Range: £79 - £215 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Central Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 186
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Grand Central Hotel Glasgow, Scotland

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