Ben in Hong Kong©

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

White House Hotel, Swansea

I am taking the rare step of using my blog as a podium of outrage.

The White House Hotel in Swansea is a total waste of time if you expect to be treated with any type of respect as a guest.

  • I turned up at the "White House Hotel, Swansea" at 3.30 PM to stay 2 nights
  • No one turned up to let me in till 5.20 PM. (In their defence it was stated on the booking form 5pm check in but in really small print. They were still 20 minutes late)
  • 2 minutes before the management arrived (late), I managed to get into the hotel because a guest opened the door on the way out
  • I was given no apology of any sort, I was just asked if 'I had been waiting long', my answer was yes. Still the word 'sorry' was not used.
  • My room smelt of cigarette smoke. By this point I just wanted to sleep and made no complaint, having driven there from Scotland that same day.
  • On my final day of breakfast I needed to leave as soon as possible to make a presentation at a university. Breakfast was served at 7AM, this was stated on the breakfast room door and verbally mentioned to me when I checked in.
  • But by 7.20AM the lights were off and no one was there. One guest who was also waiting resorted to entering the dark and closed dining room (surely a safety hazard) and eventually ate some dried cereal from a coffee cup.
  • Just after 7.20 AM the same guy who was late letting us in arrived for breakfast. Again, the word 'sorry' did not leave his lips. He just said he had a cold and was not feeling well. Just what I want to hear when someone is cooking my breakfast.
  • But best of all was the smell. Not the smell of breakfast cooking, but the smell of booze seeping out of his skin. He was not unwell, I believe he was hung over.

After contact with the White House Hotel in Swansea this is the reply we got. His comments are in italics.

"Thank you for alerting me to this complaint about the alleged problems at our hotel. I should like to look at each point individually:The Guest arrived at 3.30pm. Check in is from 5pm, although I was at the local shop, another guest had opened the door, the guest was waiting in the reception when I returned, it most certainly wasn't 20mins. (Yes it was)

The guest was apologised to, it is possible that he did not understand the Welsh accent perhaps? (Errrr, If I grew up in the middle east, and now live in Hong Kong and worked and lived in America, I think I can understand the Welsh accent)

for this we apologise.The guest was voluntarily given a free upgrade to a double room.The guest made no complaint about the smell of cigarettes in the room at any time during his stay. (Ahh yes the room that smelt)

We are a non smoking hotel and there is a large sign in reception. I myself would have noticed if anyone had been smoking, since I don't smoke myself.The breakfast staff were on duty when the guest arrived in for breakfast on both mornings, I have the staff timesheets to prove it. (He is actually being totally dishonest now and I have 2 people to back me up) I wish to apologise sincerely. Yours faithfully, Mike Jones Proprietor" (I suppose the good thing is we finally got an apology)

I will admit that it is the sarcastic reply and elastic use of the truth that has prompted this posting. And the fact that it hopefully means others searching online will discover this post before booking into the hotel. So one last time.

White House Hotel, in Swansea, Wales, United Kingdom, is a pretty awful place to stay. And I should know, my mum used to own one and I grew up in it. Unlike the White House Hotel, our hotel had standards.



Anonymous said...

You go for it!!!!

Anonymous said...

What happened to 'customer is king'? If the owner had any respect for his business he would not have responded in this manner - he would have apologised and promised to do something about it (even if he had no intention of doing so) (Sam)

Ben said...

I have no idea, either way I am on a crusade as a result of that sarcastic reply. X

Hannah said...

What a bloody liar that guy is! We were waiting 20mins after 5 for check in and waited 20+ for someone to show up for breakfast! And your room did smell of fags! I hope your blog comes up on google now! x