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“NOT as Expected”

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The Inn At Claussen's
Ranked #28 of 94 Hotels in Columbia
Certificate of Excellence
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“NOT as Expected”
Reviewed 16 July 2014

I traveled to Columbia on business, and found that the major hotel chains were 100% booked. The only rooms my colleague and I could find were at Claussen's. I stayed on a Sunday-Thursday in July. Several circumstances have led me to write this review. I am not a complainer, but I can only take so much. The hotel staff has not responded to my concerns with a whole lot of professionalism, even though they have had a great deal of time to make it right during my 4-night stay. No one from management has even contacted me or been available during non-work day hours. (The manager was on site 9-4 pm, but my business meetings meant I was not available from 8-4:30).

At first, I was excited to try this converted bakery, and experience a boutique hotel atmosphere. My initial impression of the queen suite room was nice: the room was sleek, modern, and charming. I enjoyed the separate living/work space from the bedroom up the spiral staircase. Although the location is a nice walk-able area with lots of restaurants, and from the outside, it appears the hotel has made a good effort to be competitive, I took issue with three major issues during my stay at Claussen's that showed me why this hotel is cheaper than the major players.

Here are my three issues, in order of inconvenience they caused:

1) Noisy neighbor(s): The hotel, and more specifically, all the queen suite rooms are on the end of the building nearest the Norfolk Southern railroad tracks. And I mean RIGHT NEXT TO the tracks. Trains pass at ALL hours of the night and day, and blow their horns just as they cross at Green Street. I stayed in that room three nights and none of them were a good night's sleep, even with earplugs and white noise. Expect to be woken multiple times a night because even after the engines pass, the whole room rumbles with the rest of the passing boxcars. Also, the nearby restaurants and associated traffic meant lots of extra noise late into the night. The parking lot behind the building, and right outside room 214 is a flood light to add security, because as you will read some other reviewers mention having had cars being broken into, or damaged. Though this was not my experience with my vehicle, the light also flooded my room, as the blinds were futile to block most of it. A simple change to black out curtains against the window rather than the large wooden blinds would be a great change.

2) Palmetto bugs. Google it. I discovered the unwelcomed roommate the second morning in the bathroom during my 4 night stay. This, along with the trains were more than enough for me to ask to move rooms at 8am that day, but the hotel staff at the front desk didn't even take me seriously. He said he would try to get me a new room for that night, but he didn't bother to relay my change room request to the next front desk attendant at shift change, nor any management to make it actually happen. I had to ask a second time at 4pm, and by then, they said they had no rooms available. So, I then spent a third night in the same room, dealing again, with wakeful sleep due to the trains, and the fear of finding more bugs.

3) Missed Breakfast: The delivered complimentary breakfast was nice the 1st two mornings of my stay, with no issues. However, when the hotel was at 100% capacity the third morning of my stay, my order never came during, and past my selected delivery window. I had to call the front desk and alert them to the issue. My colleague had the same experience, and though we were able to get breakfast eventually, it was on our way out the door for our business meetings. The staff should have at least called our rooms during the time we were expecting breakfast to let us know they were running late, or done something other than nothing at all. A proactive approach would have led me to leave this off my review.

Bottom Line: Perhaps some guests will find the train quaint, perhaps some guests in the south are used to bugs, and perhaps some guests don't have high expectations, but for business travel with tight deadlines and meetings all day, I would not recommend this hotel.

My next stay in Columbia will be at a major chain with proper customer service.

Room Tip: Avoid the queen suites- loud trains outside the windows
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2014, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank greatlakes31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 10 October 2014
Dear greatlakes31,

We are disappointed to read that your stay with us what not as expected. We make every effort to ensure all our guests receive great accommodations and have a restful nights sleep. If you choose to stay with us in the future, please request a corner room; it tends to have less noise from the train.

We hope to see you again in the future.

Warm Regards,
Amy
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249 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (74)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 3 July 2014 via mobile

I love this unique hotel that was once a bakery. The rooms are larger than most hotels I've stay at and I love the lofts with the spiral stair case. Having breakfast delivered to my room was a plus. This place is a must stay if you come to columbia it's close to everything.

Stayed June 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Tonya S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 10 October 2014
Dear Tonya,

Thank you for staying with us at The Inn at Claussens. We appreciate your thoughts and kind words.

SIncerely,
Amy
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 June 2014

The Inn is lovely. We stayed in a suite with spiral staircase with impressive modern furnishings (except for the platform on the platform bed which had very sharp corners). The continental breakfast delivered to the door was very tasty and more generous than one would expect. Mr. Friendly's restaurant right next door was very good also and there are numerous food and drink locations nearby. We loved the train going right by the window.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BlueShoes2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 2 July 2014
Dear Blueshoes2014,

We are delighted you enjoyed your recent visit at The Inn at Claussen's and even embraced the train that graces us each day. Like you mentioned, we are close to many restaurants and bars in Five Points. Thank you for choosing us!

Sincerely,
Amy
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Archdale, North Carolina
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 June 2014

The inn is a converted bakery and they kept that authentic feel to the hotel. It is on the national historic register. Only 28 rooms but cozy and well kept. It is within walking distance to small shops and some of the best restaurants in town. We stayed on the first floor and the room was so big and had a back door that opened to a patio which was perfect for the breakfast that is delivered to your door. Will definitely stay there again. The only negative is there is a train track right beside the hotel so you will hear the trains go by.

Room Tip: First floor is great - they all have outside patios.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank retiredLinda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 2 July 2014
Dear retiredLinda,

Our goal is to provide a cozy and personal experience for all of our guests. Since we are a 29-room property we can add finer touches that bigger hotels are not able to accommodate, such as a nightly wine and cheese reception and breakfast delivered to your room, complimentary, every morning.

We thank you for sharing your comments and staying with us. We hope to see you again in the future.

Best Regards,
Amy
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Charleston
Level Contributor
46 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 June 2014 via mobile

My boyfriend and I stayed at the Inn for one night. It was nice - our room had a patio. Everything was clean, and the king size bed was comfy. Staff were helpful and friendly. It's a cab ride away from the Vista and Arena, but there are bars and restaurants within walking distance.

Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank 843CDM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 2 July 2014
Dear 843CDM,

Thank you for choosing The Inn at Claussen's while visiting Columbia. As you mentioned we are in very close proximity to The Vista and downtown scene, yet have many local and unique bars, shops and dining within walking distance to our hotel.

Again, thank you for staying with us!

Sincerely,
Amy
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Cheraw, South Carolina
2 reviews
Reviewed 18 June 2014

Loved staying at Claussen's, and would definitely recommend. Service was excellent and really enjoyed breakfast delivered to the room and managers wine and cheese reception. Great atmosphere and knowledgable concierge.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank lkfolger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 2 July 2014
Dear Ikfolger

Thank you for taking the time to share your comments. The staff at Inn at Claussen's appreciates your thoughtfulness. We look forward to seeing you again.

Best,
Amy
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wagram, North Carolina
Level Contributor
94 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 June 2014

At first blush this dated brick building doesn't appear to present itself as a boutique hotel. Once inside the sweeping staircase makes you realize this former bakery factory has quite a bit of charm.
The entire hotel was reserved for a wedding and what a wonderful job they did to make it a great experience. Manager Amy and front desk Michael, were superb as was their entire staff, always present, very attentive and very pleasant.
Each room has its own individual style. Our room was very spacious with 2 queen beds. The pillows and mattresses were very comfortable. We had a flat screen TV and access to a semi-private patio on the ground floor. The bathroom was roomy with black onyx granite vanity and tub/shower tiling. The rain shower was very refreshing.
There is easy access with plenty of parking at the rear entrance. Definitely would stay there again!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank pminyon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClaussensGM, General Manager at The Inn At Claussen's, responded to this review, 24 June 2014
Dear Mrs. Minyon,

It was a delight to have The Inn at Claussen's share in the marriage of your son and his beautiful new bride. We love when our guest's are beyond satisfied and we strive for excellence with every guest that walks in our door.

If ever in the area, please stop back in for a visit.

Warm Regards,
Amy
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Inn At Claussen's

Property: The Inn At Claussen's
Address: 2003 Greene St, Columbia, SC 29205-1638
Region: United States > South Carolina > Columbia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#11 Romantic Hotel in Columbia
#15 Business Hotel in Columbia
#26 Family Hotel in Columbia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — The Inn At Claussen's 3*
Number of rooms: 29
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience Southern Hospitality at it’s finest in the heart of Columbia, South Carolina. Listed on the National Historic Register, The Inn at Claussen’s blends historic grandeur, exquisite service and eco-friendly amenities in perfect proportion. Once home to Claussen’s Bakery we are now a 29 room Boutique Inn, just steps away from some of the best dining and shopping in South Carolina. Whether you’re taking a quick vacation or getting down to business, we have all the modern comforts to help you get away or stay connected. At The Inn at Claussen’s you can always expect your breakfast to be delivered to your room in the morning, a glass of wine in the evenings and gracious hospitality around the clock. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Inn At Claussen`s Hotel Columbia
Hotel At Claussens
At Claussens Hotel

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