Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Down to London...and a Thistle with a few thorns

I'm in London for a few days on business, topped off by a quick visit with Miss Tui. I'm a bit groggy, but I do love this city. But I'm not going to blog about that, I'm going to blog about the joys of my hotel experience, at the Thistle Marble Arch. Now, the hotel overall is fine - it is huge (and reminds me a bit of the Shining), a bit dated but clean and with decent rooms. That being said, here's a lowdown on yesterday's check in:

1 - I check in, and am given a key to room 777. I drag my luggage the quarter mile to room 777 (yes, quarter mile), open the door, and SOMEONE ELSE IS ALREADY IN THE ROOM. I quietly retreat.

2 - I walk a quarter mile back to the reception desk - now, the issue at reception is that their booking systems are down and everything is being done manually - they apologize, and give me a new room, on the 8th floor, that is an even longer walk away. I *think* I hear someone trying to get into my room, but think Naah, can't be.

3 - I unpack, relax. Go for a walk. Go to my room. Decide to go back to reception to get a wireless voucher. A tour bus has arrived so there is a lineup of about 20 people. I decide to bail and go back to my room. Which I do, except MY KEY DOESN'T WORK this time.

4 - I go back to reception. Stand with the other 20 people, get to reception, voice my concern about the security in the hotel and have them check that my room hasn't been allocated to someone else. They apologize and assure me that isn't the case.

5 - I go back to my room. A letter is pushed under my door - a fax with my room number on it. But not my name. Result: angry phonecall to the front desk, followed by a sheepish hotel employee at the door who caught my growing concern about the security of my room.

6 - Phone call from the consierge who was "just verifying' my last name (now THAT instills confidence!)

7 - 9pm, I'm half asleep in bed, and there is someone desperately trying to open my door. I go bellowing like a bear with a sore head to open the door, in my PJs, to be greeted by a terrified looking woman holding an apology letter and fruit tray. Yes, they even messed up the apology.

Ahhh the joys. Really, the hotel is just fine. Just. Fine.

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