Positives: dood location near Gatwick airport, room was reasonably clean and all things considered the room itself was good enough for the money.
However in my opinion these positives were badly let down and in fact overshadowed by the hotel reception staff, on several levels.
First, it annoyed me that their level of English was... poor...and that's being generous. I found that strange staying in a hotel in England.
Second, and far more serious in my opinion: I had just arrived in my room, ready to take a shower, heard people's voices on the corridor. I thought: maybe the staff had forgotten to tell me something or I had forgotten something at the reception desk. The next second I hear people entering my room. I was really shocked to see a couple (who were equally shocked) entering my room!
It turned out the receptionist had given them a key to my (!) room. Alright, everybody can make mistakes, but this was totally unacceptable in my opinion. Suppose I had not been inside when they entered. They could have taken my wallet, cash, passport, credit cards, just about everything. There would have been no signs of a break in since they had been given the key. And even though I was inside, travelling on my own, 2 totals strangers entering my room... If they had had bad intentions, anything could have happened.
I could have coped with a not very clean room, or an uncomfortable bed, or whatever.
Strangers not being given access to your room is the very least you can expect from any hotel, regardless how cheap it is.
About 15 minutes later I received a call from the receptionist. She said she was very sorry and that it would not happen again. My confidence in her had dropped a tiny bit to be honest. I told her I was very unhappy about the situation, and I asked whether I could store my valuable belongings in a safe, in a locker or in a safe place.
Unfortunately she did not understand the meaning of the word 'safe'. I was on holiday in England for crying out loud! I tried to describe and explain what I meant, using other words, but it did not help. After she said she was very sorry for the 7th time, I ended the conversation.
An hour later I went downstairs, the receptionist tried to attract my attention. I thought: ah, she'll offer me a free beer because of what happened. No, again she said was very sorry.
I went back upstairs. My room key did not work anymore... Great. Went back to the reception. She was adamant I had kept my room key close to my mobile, which according to her had caused the key to stop working which was not the case. Anyway she reset my key eventually, and I got to bed.
Did not have the greatest of night because of the noise from other rooms. Compared to the three star Ibis hotel in Brighton I stayed the nights before, the sound proofing was nowhere near as good. Never mind, it's a budget hotel.
6AM next morning, loud knocking on my door. Still being in bed I shouted: "yes"? No answer. Two minutes later: people banging my door again. I looked through the peephole. Two pesky kids knocking on everyone's doors...
Not the hotel's fault I admit. Not a great end to a not particularly pleasant stay either.
Mainly because of the staff at Ibis Gatwick, next time I will book an afternoon return flight from London Gatwick Airport instead of one in the morning and stay at Ibis Brighton instead, where I had stayed the three nights before incidentally and thoroughly enjoyed my stay.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Ibis London Gatwick Airport is ideally located less than 5 min from all terminals (private shuttle from 5 a.m. to 11.30 p.m. on request), M23 (Jct 10), links to M25, A23 and A217, walking distance from the Manor Royal industrial estate (training centre,Oxford Aviation Academy, Virgin Atlantic base), 30 min by train from London (Gatwick Express), and 45 min from St Pancras international station. All rooms offer ensuite with shower, high speed internet, airport parking (long and short term). ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Ibis London Gatwick Airport Hotel Crawley
- Ibis Hotel Crawley
- Accor London Gatwick Airport
- Ibis London Gatwick Airport Crawley, West Sussex