Archive for December, 2014

Dear Mr Proprietor of the Kings Head,

Monday, December 29th, 2014

An extract from an independent review of the Kings Head Hotel, from booking.com:

The unenthusiastic welcome with no offer to carry our bags or show us to our rooms, which were up many flights of windy and steep stairs. Despite the use of good, local ingredients at dinner (and some at breakfast) there was some truly nasty yoghurt which I’m guessing came from Lidl or Aldi. The owner/manager had cheered up considerably by the time we checked out and was really quite friendly.”

(Before you continue, read this: http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowUserReviews-g190769-d557129-r245854348-The_King_s_Head_Hotel-Ross_on_Wye_Herefordshire_England.html#REVIEWS. It’s the prelude.)

Dear Mr Proprietor,

Thank you for your response to my review, and especially for your concern that my memory is perhaps slightly hazy about our stay in your hotel. Let me reassure you that it really isn’t.

In turn, may I offer my sincere congratulations that you have somehow managed to create a response which is almost entirely fabricated. Have you ever considered writing fiction? There could be a market for the delusions of a hotel proprietor, you never know.

However, since you struggle to see truth, I shall address the points separately for you here in order to make it a little easier as I set the record straight for all concerned.

  1. We booked a room at the last minute as a result of unforeseen circumstances. Therefore, we did not follow the normal booking process. I was quoted two different prices for two different rooms. I was informed by the Duty Manageress at the reception desk that the occupancy of the rooms did not matter as both had a double bed; numbers were purely required for breakfast. My partner and I had a conversation in front of her where we laughed about sharing a single bed and it was this which prompted the above response. Is this conversation indicative of two people who are perhaps considering sharing a room? I like to think so. However at this stage I had no intention of staying.
  2. You are correct in that we went to the room. You are correct that we took a bottle of wine with us. You are correct that we came down at around 1am. This was for the novel reason of myself trying to leave the hotel to go home. Imagine our surprise when we found that we were entirely locked in! We tried every door but we could not escape. Never mind though, we reassured ourselves, the Duty Manageress had said occupancy numbers were only important for breakfast.
  3. At this stage we returned to the room and realised that there was no water. No problem, as is the norm with every other hotel in the world I dialled ‘0’ for reception (like dialling ‘9’ for an outside line) and you answered the phone. After being berated for using the ‘emergency’ number (‘0’ only being an emergency number in your head) you said that no, we could not have either water or wine (as I requested) and hung up on me. At this stage my partner took over, repeated the requests politely and you said that we had been told there was no 24 hour service in the hotel upon booking the room. We hadn’t, but to avoid further disagreement, we simply said – well, what are we to do about drinking water? You would leave a bottle downstairs at reception you said. And hung up.
  4. My partner duly went downstairs to collect the water. During a discussion which you did not want to have, you solved this by switching the lights off, leaving my partner standing in the dark. This is an act which is unacceptable in any society and frankly quite astonishing from someone who purports to hold an esteemed position in a customer service-based industry. One wonders how you got it. Maybe when the interview panel said no, you simply switched the lights off? Stranger things have happened.
  5.  My partner then returned upstairs and you either switched the lights back on there and then, or you retired to bed to set your alarm for 6:59am.
  6. We arrived downstairs at around 7:30am and went to settle our bill. This is usually a pleasing event in a hotel but your face dictated otherwise. “Good morning,” my partner said. “How are you?”

“Tired,” you snapped in response.

Due to your rudeness on the several occasions detailed above and therefore the fact that our visit had been spoilt, we declined to pay the full bill. Instead, as is fair, we made a reasonable offer. You then refused to accept this offer. We tried for ten minutes to persuade you to take some money, but you refused consistently. When we asked for confirmation of the bill being settled to avoid misunderstanding, you refused that too. You don’t like hearing the word ‘no’, but you certainly like using it.

  1. Staggered by your rudeness and at a loss as to what to do, we left the hotel by mutual agreement. The ‘disturbance’ that you have alleged occurred, and that you were worried would disturb other guests, did not happen. For two reasons: one because we are reasonable and polite people and two because there were no other guests staying there. It seemed strange when we had been told that the night before, however following our stay at your establishment nothing could be more logical.

Finally, liquid was spilled on the bed you say? Considering that the whole debacle both arose because of and revolved around the absolute dearth of liquid in the room, that was a bit of a silly thing to make up, wasn’t it?

I think in future that you should always express yourself through the medium of dance. It would be clearer.

Regards,

Your ex-customer.

PS. I include some links which I strongly suggest may be helpful for you.

https://www.instituteofcustomerservice.com/1767/Training-courses.html

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/unhappy-customers.htm