We arrived earlier than expected in San Francisco and called at 5am to request accommodation at the hotel as soon as possible, since we were travelling with an infant. We were told that the hotel was fully booked, so we would not be able to be accommodated until some guests checked out in the morning. A staff member reached via the toll-free number suggested we should go to the front desk after the hotel opened in the early morning to see if there were any early check-outs that would make a room available for us prior to the normal check-out time (11am).
We found other things to occupy our time until the mid-morning and came to the hotel around 9:30am to inquire about the availability of a room. The front desk staff informed us that there were still no rooms available, but we could wait in a room next to the lobby (where we were not directly visible and we couldn't see/hear what they were doing at the front desk) and they would let us know when a clean room was prepared for us. I asked how long to expect this to take and asked for about 30 minutes to check up on it. I took note of the fact that there was a piece of paper behind the front desk with my name on it and a note about my call in the morning to request early check-in.
The hotel staff kept us waiting for over 4 hours! Worst of all, they kept asking us to give them "30 minutes" to check on it and seemed to be simply trying to delay us until regular check-in at 3pm instead of actually trying to help us!
The general manager was little help, as he was defensive and reiterated that check-in is at 3pm, saying that they hadn't done anything wrong. I explained to him that I had not accused them of wrongdoing and I am aware of the regular check-in time, which is why I called ahead to request early check-in. I noted that I had seen several housekeepers return to the front desk, there was a notice about my call sitting on the desk since 5am, it had been several hours since check-out time, and I had been given the expectation of an answer within a half hour several times already.
We didn't get checked into a room until 1:30pm, and that's after I refused to leave the lobby until they actually checked if a suitable room had been cleaned!
The condition of the room was reasonably good, but there was a slight scent of cigarette smoke even though it was a non-smoking room. However, the cigarette odour was much stronger in the bathroom and became even stronger when the exhaust fan was turned on. Given the difficulties we had already encountered, and the hotel staff's repeated declarations that the hotel was full and they had no room, we decided that the cigarette smoke odour was a minor annoyance and put up with it for the duration of our stay since it was tolerable as long as the bathroom door remained closed. I notified the manager of the odour upon check-out.
Apart from the check-in debacle, we were generally satisfied with our interactions with the hotel staff and facilities. However, the four hour wait and delay tactics that we were subjected to were totally unacceptable, especially given that we had called in to give prior notice about our early arrival. The treatment we received shows a lack of concern for a paying customer and total lack of consideration for my time. Had the staff simply been up front and honest about the situation and kept me informed it would have been a far better experience and left a better impression. Even if they had checked the availablility, then told me that it would be several hours, I would have been able to make alternate arrangements and completed other tasks during the wait time instead of being kept waiting in half-hour intervals while the staff did not appear to be actively working on the issue. Furthermore, given the length of time that the staff were aware of the request, they could have told one of the housekeepers to let them know as soon as the first suitable room had been cleaned, which would have allowed a smooth early check-in and guest satisfaction.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Cash is accepted as a form of payment for those guests paying by a weekly or monthly rate. A valid credit card must be kept on file for incidentals. Cash is not accepted as a method of payment for guests paying the daily rate. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Homestead Studio Hotel Milpitas
- Homestead Suites Milpitas
- Homestead Milpitas
- Milpitas Homestead Suites
- Homestead Studio Suites Milpitas