This week Compensation Clinic visits the recently re-branded Hilton Edinburgh that is now operating under the Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh – The Caledonian-name.
Here’s the email that a LoyaltyLobby reader sent to the Hilton HHonors Diamond desk (note that English is not the readers first language so please pardon the typos):
You can access Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh – The Caledonian’s website here.
first of all, let me say that we are very happy in the last Time wit all our Hotels and have beautiful Stays in the Waldorf Astoria and Conrad Hotels. We just travelling private and not business and are very happy to reach the Diamond-Status last Year without any Promotion or Status-Match.
But now, we have a very disappointing Stay here in the Waldorf Astoria Hotel Edinburgh. (formally a normally Hilton) We has a very frustrated Check-In and the Reception-Women was not very friendly, as example she give us loveless the Diamond-Voucher for 2 Drinks and dont hhonor the Diamond-Tier. We also receive just a very Small Upgrade from Classic Room to a Deluxe-Room without View. We spoke with the friendly German Front Office Managerin and she say, the Hotel has no better Rooms available at this time but we see over the Website that some better Rooms are available (also Rooms with View to the Castle and Suites).
After goint to the Room we waiting 1 Hour for the Baggage from the Concierge, we just ask the Reception after this Hour and she say, we become it now as soon as possible. We waiting again 30 Minutes and dont become the Baggage, so we goint directly to the Concierge and transportate it self to the Room.
After we going to the Room, it was extremely Cold in the Room and we activate the Air Condition. It dont helps and someone from the Technical Staff say, that he has to restart the central Air Condition. I dont know, why noone have check this before and fix it.
We also just receive 2 Apples as Fruits, but see that the Men is going to another Rooms on the same Floor and has some Strawberrys and other Fruits. I dont know, why Diamond-Member just receive 2 Apples as Fruits….
But this is not all from the Problems, the Room is “ill kempt” the Carpet, Tables and other Things Dirty and this is never a Waldorf Astoria Standard… I make some Pictures as example and upload it for you to Dropbox: https://removed By the way, just 1 Elevator from the Hotel has working. And i write this Mail to you in the Business-Center and have to wait all 5 Minutes for 30 Seconds, because the SiteKiosk Software here on the Hotel-Computer is not licensed and lock the Computer.
I’m very frustrated and has know before, that it is Old House and not moderne, but its just Hampton Inn Standard and not from a Waldorf Astoria.
We checkout on Sunday and have no hope, that more Talk with the Staff brings a Solution, so i write this Mail to you. I request, that you offer me a Compensation for this Trouble and Problems, so that we can enjoy the next Stays again. I see that this Waldorf Astoria costs at the moment 50.000 HHonors Points per Night, so that we request 100.000 Points to the Hhonors-Account and use it for 1 Night in a other Waldorf Astoria Hotel in the Future.
Here’s the reply from from Hilton Guest Assistance:
Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to address your concerns regarding your stay at the Caledonian Edinburgh, United Kingdom Waldorf Astoria. It was a great pleasure to assist you!
I would like to express my sincere apologies for falling short of our commitment to extend a rewarding experience due to the numerous issues during your stay. In an effort to make amends for your experience, a total of 15,000 Hilton Honors points will be posted to your Hilton Honors account. The Voice of our Customers is critical to ensuring our guests receive a rewarding experience when staying at the Hilton Portfolio of Brands. Thank you for bringing this concern to our attention.
Please allow up to 15 business days for the points to be available.
We do appreciate your patience and continued loyalty to Hilton Worldwide.
Here’s the reply from the hotel:
Thank you for taking the time to write to our Guest Assistance department following your recent stay with us. However, it is with regret to hear you were unsatisfied with your stay overall. Please accept my sincere apologies for the inconvenience caused with the heating issues, our Facilities Manager has been informed and is actively working to repair the problem with a matter of urgency. I have personally shared your comments with our Front Office Manager regarding your feedback on the reception staff, this is certainly extremely unusual, although we shall certainly treat seriously as our first impressions are our main focus throughout the hotel. With regards to the concierge department, excellent communication is a vital part of the luxury service we aim to provide therefore this feedback will be taken extremely seriously and will be dealt with internally. I would like to reassure you the valuable feedback you have mentioned will be addressed individually with the team members involved. We certainly value our HHonors members and loyal guests; this is of course not the service we aim to deliver as a Waldorf Astoria Hotel, and if other guests were receiving fruits, this is a common purchase for many of our guests pre-arrival at the hotel, never-the-less we are currently reviewing our complimentary gifts for our HHonors members and I thank you for sharing your thoughts.
Mr. LoyaltyLobby reader, once again I would like to apologise for the shortfall in service that you have received, and as a gesture of goodwill, I would like to offer you a refund of 50,000 HHonors points. Should this be to your satisfaction, please advise me and I will add to your HHonors account which would take up to 10 working days. Moreover, I do hope that you will return to the ‘Caley’ in the future in order for us to restore your faith with us.
It is my personal opinion that Hilton is damaging the reputation of the Waldorf Astoria brand (or what is left of it) by splashing it onto a number of substandard properties.
I was in Edinburgh last summer, but didn’t stay at this property due to availability issues. Rather I stayed at the Glasshouse, Indigo and the Hilton hotels. The Marriott Autograph Collection Glasshouse is a unique property and worth staying at. The service in the UK at the hotels and overall tends to be so-so. The key is to keep your expectations extremely low.
Remember that photos are worth more than 1000 words. If you encounter issues at the hotel that you can document by taking photos, do take them.
The 65,000 Hilton HHonors points were adequate compensation for the issues encountered and the guest was satisfied.