Blackpool hotel responds to support group over ‘holiday from hell’ claims

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The Royal Windsor Hotel does not accept all of the accusations made but has apologised to customers if they had a bad experience

 

The New Royal Windsor Hotel
The New Royal Windsor Hotel

A Blackpool hotel has responded to claims that guests had a ‘holiday from hell’ after encountering numerous problems with their rooms.

Yesterday (August 18) LancsLive reported that a Facebook ‘support group’ had been set up for guests of the The Royal Windsor Hotel after a guest said her holiday ‘was ruined’ by a recent stay.

Carly Denham, from East Derby, travelled for two hours with her partner, children, friend and friend’s children to the Promenade hotel, where she says she was left ‘in tears’ due to a number of errors.

Their weekend away, taking place on August 13 – August 15, was left “absolutely ruined” according to Carly for a number of reasons, including a broken mirror ‘thrown from the window’ into the courtyard below, a delay to entering one of the rooms due to an electrical fault and £50 being taken from her account without warning.

Left upset by her experience, she set up a Facebook group for other people who have stayed at the hotel to share their views. The group, which now has more than 150 members, was contacted this morning by a representative from The Royal Windsor who responded to the concerns.

The statement was then shared with LancsLive via email and a follow-up call was arranged with the hotel.

It said: “In the first instance guests were offered drinks from the bar and were informed that the room had significant damage caused by the previous guests. We informed the guests that although the hotel was fully booked, they could find alternative accommodation or wait and we would do our best to accommodate them.

“The guests stayed in two different rooms but only provided pictures of one of the bedrooms whilst photographing small parts of the room instead of showing the whole room.”

The statement also adds that the roof is cleaned every seven to 10 days to clean up any mess left by guests throwing items from their windows onto the roof.

Addressing Carly’s previous concern that a kettle had to be boiled on the floor, the hotel statement said that there are no kettles on the floor ‘in any of the rooms’.

The New Windsor Hotel Kettle
The New Windsor Hotel Kettle

Regarding the incident in which £50 was taken from Carly’s account, the manager said that this was a damage payment for smoking in the rooms, an accusation which Carly denies.

The statement adds: “Our housekeepers came and reported to reception about the smell of cigarettes in this particular bedroom that the guests were staying in. The guests were told that our policy requires a payment of £50 as a fine for smoking in the bedroom and that is when the problems started.

“Regarding the noise complaint we acknowledge that this may have upset our guest but we did not receive any notification at the time from the guest regarding this. We also haven’t received any other complaints regarding noise. We have duly implemented a new policy to lower the noise overnight.”

The spokesperson continued to write that the hotel find it “extremely unfair” that they had not been given the “opportunity to defend themselves”.

LancsLive had no response when they called the hotel on several occasions yesterday (August 18) but have since spoken to management who explained that extra training will be put in place for staff returning from furlough.

Carly claims that the mirror was thrown out of the window
Carly claims that the mirror was thrown out of the window

The New Royal Windsor Hotel went on to admit that their reviews are “not at the best at the moment” but said they do accommodate between “400-600 people every week for 52 weeks a year” so the amount of bad reviews only account for “a very small percentage and does not show a balanced and fair view of our hotel.”

The hotel then went on to apologise to the support group for the upset caused by their accommodation.

They said: “We do apologise and are very sorry to hear that our other guests were upset. We are trying our best to improve the standard and service this hotel provides. Our hotel is already in the process of ongoing refurbishment, which with ongoing staff training will improve our standard and service considerably over the winter period.

“Please bear in mind a lot of our staff continue on furlough and as with other hospitality venues we are unable to recruit staff from anywhere in UK.”

The Royal Windsor Hotel asked guests to appreciate the “Covid break and Brexit” which they say has been “detrimental to the industry and unfortunately this situation has made the hospitality sector extremely difficult to trade in.”

They added: “We are only human after all…”

Members of the support group were not left satisfied with the hotel’s statement.

One member commented: “So why do you take people’s money and not provide refunds! Even when you yourselves cancel bookings! Absolute joke. It’s theft! Maybe you should upgrade your phone system as well so phone calls can get through and be answered.”

A second commented: “As for being in a pandemic it should be so clean it’s practically sterile!! Please don’t blame the pandemic I work for the NHS and it’s insulting!!!! Please don’t go there!!”

A spokesperson for the hotel has confirmed that actions are being taken to improve guest satisfaction, including extra training for staff, a noise limiting policy to prevent excessive noise from entertainment and the replacement of windows – six of which have been refurbished at the time of publication.