This weeks edition of the Compensation Clinic brings us to Portland Oregon where one of our readers had a less than perfect stay due to construction at the Westin Portland Hotel.
Sometimes hotel properties have to undergo some renovation there is no way around it but in these cases the hotel has to inform guests properly in advance, especially if facilities are closed during the time of construction taking place.
Our reader Kevin recently stayed at the Westin Portland which he reserved through the SPG App and at no point did he receive notice about construction taking place and neither did the hotel email him (he is a lifetime SPG Platinum) about the situation.
Once arrived at the hotel the following issues became apparent:
- General construction on property (indoors)
- Restaurant closed
- Breakfast set up in a conference room instead
- Only one elevator in service, very long wait periods
- Dirt/Dust and noise during the day
The reader contacted SPG Customer Service about the matter which prompted (as always – SPG Customer Service never resolves issues themselves) a reply from the hotel with some warm words.
… Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know about your experience with booking your stay at the Westin Portland. You are absolutely correct, when a renovation is occurring our guests need to be informed of this at the time of booking.
While we have made an effort to make sure this information is on our website and in all booking channels, it appears it may not have made it onto the mobile application. I have brought this to the attention of our Director of Sales & Marketing so that we may correct this immediately.
Thank you again for bringing this to our attention. …
No offer of compensation or goodwill at any point so the customer took the direct approach which I often recommend and asked for a fix amount of points:
… Thank you for responding to my email which I sent to customer care. Since you agree that my stay did not meet the standards of the hotel, I am wondering if you would be able to credit my SPG account 6,000 points that I could use towards a future stay at your property. …
6,000 SPG Points equal half a night at the Westin in points and to be honest I consider this on the low (but acceptable) end of the compensation spectrum in this case.
The hotels housekeeping manager replied that they would request the points and they have in the meanwhile been credited to the readers account.
Everybody hates construction and it’s the hotels duty inform the guests appropriately and also adjust their rates during the time this takes place. All the property did here was inconveniencing paying customers while still charging full price. Breakfast in an uninspiring conference room is a complete no go in my book.
I would have probably requested the nights charge to be waived or compensated in points. In any case the readers 6,000 points are a decent outcome and somewhat fair.