Hotels are huge corporations with multi-levels from the front desk clerk and local hotel staff all the way up to the executives in the boardroom. Sometimes, it can be frustrating if our thoughts/concerns/complaints seem to hit the proverbial ceiling and not make any meaningful impact. Other times, it can be surprising to find that some hotels DO listen to their customers! Here is one hotel that really surprised me with this.
Some Hotels DO Listen to Their Customers
The Waldorf Astoria
Last month, I had to be in New York City for a couple of days and I was really tossing about as to which hotels I wanted to stay in (I rarely stay in the same hotel two nights in a row and figured I would try out a couple of properties). I really wanted to stay at the Park Hyatt New York but I will be honest – dropping 30,000 Hyatt points for a single night for just me is something I cannot do. It was not about not having the points, it was about that 30,000 Hyatt points gets my family a whole lot of nights at our favorite Hyatt instead of just one night for me!
Anyway, I had actually never stayed at the historic Waldorf Astoria in New York. With it being sold to the Chinese insurance company Anbang (the same company who was bidding for Starwood) and its plans to turn most of the hotel into condos starting next year, I knew this would be my shot to stay here and see what it was really like.
The Electrical Situation
I moved from another Hilton property in midtown to the Waldorf Astoria and dropped my stuff off before heading out. I did my usual hotel routine of going to plug in my phone and computer while I got the stuff I needed – except I could not find a plug for both of those chargers! Seriously, I went all around the room and the room was seriously devoid of electrical outlets.
Now, this is a pet-peeve of mine – I like a lot of outlets! As much as I do travel relatively light, I always have a fair amount of electronic gear with me and need to have it plugged in. This was not a great place for that! It wasn’t that there was just not any empty outlets but there were not even any outlets that could really be easily accessed or freed from their current occupants (for example, the desk had the modem plugged into the plug and the phone).
Finally, I found an open outlet – in the bathroom. No matter, I plugged my phone in for a bit and then headed out. I wasn’t going to complain because it was what it was but I just sort of vented a bit on Twitter about this situation as I walked down the road:
The Hotel Listens
When I arrived back to my room, I received a phone call from the front desk informing me that a hotel staff member was outside my door to help me find outlets. She came in and also could not find an empty outlet on the wall but did find the strip under the desk had a single slot available – but not wide enough for a charger. I told her it was ok, I would just charge it in the bathroom.
Not too long later, I received an e-mail from a hotel director asking if it was ok to send up a power strip to help me with the problem. I said that would be great and they sent one up. And then, he followed up after that to make sure it was all set. That is some great customer service from a wonderful hotel!
Someone may say it is because I am a blogger but I highly doubt that a hotel like the Waldorf Astoria in NYC really cares what a small-ish blogger is going to say in a review about their hotel. After all, they have some very influential people that stay there and big conferences – my comments on plugs is not going to steer any of those clientele away!
I appreciate that there are hotels like the Waldorf Astoria that pay attention and listen to customers – even when we are not talking directly to them!