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“My worst IHG experience ever”

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Holiday Inn Express Harlow
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Harlow
Reviewed 27 December 2013

Firstly, let me start by saying I am a IHG gold elite member. I regularly stay in IHG hotels and choose the brand for their facilities and service. I spend numerous nights in their hotels every year for both business and leisure trips and have never had cause for complaint.

My wife and I checked into this hotel for a one night stay on Christmas Day. We arrived late and were checked in by night staff. Maybe they were annoyed by having to work on Christmas Day but whatever the reason there was a distinct lack of effort to welcome us. We were told the vital information but no small talk was even attempted. Even a simple 'hello' and 'how can I help' would have been nice let alone a 'merry Christmas'!

The rooms here are well appointed - the bathroom especially is very well equipped. However, we found the bed to be extremely uncomfortable (and don't appear to be the only ones judging by the reviews on here) and were constantly rolling into each other in the night as it dipped significantly in the middle.

We ate breakfast in the hotel on boxing day morning. Breakfast was basic but is offered for free so can't really complain. Whilst eating we observed two members of staff on reception whilst one lady was running around in the breakfast area like made trying to keep on top of everything. Of the 2 ladies on reception, one simply sat and stared into space whilst the other attended to each guest that needed assistance.

When we checked out we were not asked how our stay was so again no pleasantries or small talk. As my Gold Elite status was not acknowledged at check-in I asked the lady that was checking us out for my bonus points voucher. I was astonished at her tone and attitude in her response. She effectively accused me of lying by saying she did not know I hadn't been given the voucher at check-in. I assured her that I hadn't but she just repeated herself in a louder more defensive tone. When my wife asked if she could look into it and get back to us she responded by saying that she would try but would not be seeing the night staff so probably not! We paid and were presented with/had our receipt thrown at us and left. No thank you for our stay or even a goodbye! A fantastic way to treat any guests let alone a top tier member of your rewards club!

In my opinion this hotel has the facilities to be an excellent hotel in an area in which other hotels are very average. However, the staff are definitely letting it down at the moment. Asking a guest how their stay was is a basic skill. Maybe a customer service training course would be of benefit here?

Room Tip: Just make sure the bed is comfy and mattress doesn't dip before you settle into the room!
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank S12375
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IHGCare, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 11 January 2014

Dear S12375,

We would like to first of all thank you for providing a review of your stay. It is truly unfortunate to see the service you received prevented you from fully enjoying your time with us. We were glad to see your high scores for Cleanliness, Rooms, and Value. We take these reviews very seriously as they help us to identify areas that might benefit from additional attention and improvement. We would also like to follow up with you directly and have sent you a private message.

We thank you again for leaving feedback on your stay. We look forward to being of service to you again in the future.

Sincerely,

Adrian D.
Case Manager
IHGCare

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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293 - 299 of 413 reviews

Reviewed 20 December 2013

This is a much newer holiday inn express and is brilliant located in Harlow town centre it's easily accessible and everything looks and works great! Staff were friendly and breakfast is good with good coffee and tea selection. There are large meeting rooms and I can't stress how great it is to visit a perfectly clean hotel!

Stayed: December 2013, travelled on business
Thank intheria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HIEXHARLOW, Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 6 February 2014

Dear intheria,

Thank you for taking the time to let us have your feedback via Trip Advisor following your recent stay at the Holiday Inn Express Harlow. It is always pleasing for us to hear when our guests have had a a great experience when staying at the hotel. I hope that we will have the opportunity to welcome you back to the hotel in the future.

Kind regards,

Andrea Caponnetto

Guest Service Manager
Holiday inn Express Harlow

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Reviewed 13 December 2013

Nice HI Express.
Not the greatest location and car parking is an issue but the hotel itself is very nice, I am not sure how long this place has been open but it seemed reasonably new with smart decor and comfortable quiet rooms.

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank Gary M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HIEXHARLOW, Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 6 February 2014

Dear GaryM,

Thank you for taking the time to forward your feedback following your stay at the Holiday Inn Express Harlow. It was great to hear that you had an overall positive experience during your stay at the hotel. I do hope that we will have the pleasure of welcoming you back to the hotel in the not too distant future.

Sincerely,

Andrea Caponnetto
Guest Service Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 December 2013

I booked this hotel for £70 through hotels.com. I has to attend a meeting at the civic centre in the centre of town so this hotel was ideal. It is an uphill walk from Harlow town station and because of the layout of Harlow is not in a straight line. A taxi cost £5.50 from the station. There is a taxi and and the bus station immediately outside the hotel. The are a few restaurants nearby like nandos and pizza express. Rooms and corridors we spacious and relatively new. Only grip I have is that the Internet was unreliable - I was in room 210. As with other holiday inn expresses I have stayed in nice to have a free breakfast but again the beans were cold! Friendly staff in the main.

Room Tip: Seems to be a quiet hotel
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
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Thank andrewbr2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HIEXHARLOW, Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 6 February 2014

Dear andrewbr2,

Thank you for taking the time to forward your feedback following your stay at the Holiday Inn Express Harlow. I'm sad to hear that due to some small issue you weren't able to entirely enjoy your stay. We always value your feedback because it allows us to see where improvements can be made. Anyway I'm happy to hear that overall you've enjoyed our hotel and especially our friendly staff.

Kind regards,

Andrea Caponnetto

Guest Service Manager
Holiday Inn Express Harlow

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 December 2013

2nd visit ...after a year ..
great improvement .. car park is full as before but discounted parking next door helps.
eastern European staff as before polite , surprised with more Brits working in the industry .. chancellors business agenda working ..getting people into work..

all staff polite and courteous, rooms well maintained ..still sad about the sausages ..awful ..

bar that and the fact it's some distance from M11 .. for my needs.. it a decent place to stay ..

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled on business
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Thank vinchy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HIEXHARLOW, Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 9 December 2013

Dear vinchy,

Thank you for taking the time to provide us with your feedback. I thank you for the positive review of our team who always aim to be as helpful as possible. I also thank you the points you have raised in terms of the food quality. We always value this feedback because it allows us to see where improvements can be made.

I hope to welcome you back to the hotel in the future.

Sincerely,

Andrea Caponnetto
Guest Service Manager

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Reviewed 7 December 2013

We stayed here while on our way back from Heathrow, the hotel staff were helpful even though we were quite late arriving, the room was clean and comfortable, easy to find with good directions from the website, breakfast was included, plenty of choice if a little average, the only problem was the car park was full and we had to park in the nearby multi storey.

Room Tip: rooms are much cheaper if you book in advance
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank Lindyann2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HIEXHARLOW, Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 9 December 2013

Dear Lindyann2013,

Thank you for taking the time to forward your feedback following your recent stay at the Holiday Inn Express Harlow. It was great to hear that you had a positive experience during your stay at the hotel and I have passed on your comments to the team here. I do hope that we will have the pleasure of welcoming you back to the hotel in the not too distant future.

Sincerely,

Andrea Caponnetto
Guest Service Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 December 2013 via mobile

After skeptically booking this hotel after very bad stays before, we were nervous yet didn't really have much choice in hotels. We booked and turned up in the evening of the 28th November. We specifically asked for a room on the third or fourth floor. This request was honoured and we were on the third floor. The receptionist was lovely, very kind and friendly. All in all was a lovely stay. The room was lovely and clean, the cleaning staff were lovely and helpful. I would have rated excellent but the only thing we didn't enjoy was the breakfast. The cooked selection was very bland and dry. We came down for breakfast one morning and didn't bother for the rest. Glad we didn't pay for it. Checkout was lovely and the gentleman asked if everything was okay during the stay. All in all lovely.

Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank MissLisaFox95
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HIEXHARLOW, Manager at Holiday Inn Express Harlow, responded to this reviewResponded 9 December 2013

Dear MissLisaFox95,

Thank you for taking the time to let us have your feedback via Trip Advisor following your recent stay at the Holiday Inn Express Harlow. It is always pleasing for us to hear when our guests have had a a great experience when staying at the hotel. Especially if our improvement has been noticed. I'm sad to hear that you didn't enjoy our complimentary breakfast, but I've appreciated the fact that our staff was helpful and friendly.

Sincerely,
Andrea Caponnetto
Guest Service Manager

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 Holiday Inn Express Harlow

Address: Crown Gate, Harlow CM20 1FL, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > Essex > Harlow
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Harlow
Price Range: £48 - £86 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Holiday Inn Express Harlow 3*
Number of rooms: 122
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Accommodation ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Holiday Inn Express Harlow Essex

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