Hampton Inn Quality declining?

Old Jul 13, 2022, 8:43 pm
  #1  
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Hampton Inn Quality declining?

I don't know if I had a string of bad luck, or if its a trend, but the last 3 Hampton Inns I have stayed at have been dirty. I remember first choosing Hamptons in the 90's because they were more consistent than some of the other chains. Always within my company's budget, where I needed to be, and simple and clean.

Then they started moving up market, but I found them still even nicer, and usually very clean.

During Covid, the rooms always smelled so fresh and clean.

Now, the rates are high, but the last 3 I stayed at were dumpy. Dirty showers, dirty toilets, broken furniture, stained carpets, etc. The rooms smelled musty and sour. The one last night was pretty clean, but the AC wasn't keeping up with the temp. The fan was feeble. I pulled out the filters and the change was immediate. They hadn't been cleaned in so long, they were blocking air flow. Breakfast items are skimpy and often items are missing. Two nights ago, I used the microwave in the snack area and it was filthy and covered with exploded food inside.

Meanwhile, they all have signs explaining that housekeeping is every 5 nights only. The one I stayed at in Syracuse appeared to have people staying for long stays as they worked on a construction contract or something.

I think this housekeeping change is causing them to cut back on housekeeping staff, and they are taking a lot of shortcuts. Lets face it, if someone is staying long term and you are only cleaning the room every 5 days, its not getting clean. And nothing is getting deep cleaned.

Interestingly, all the hotels were sold out. But I don't think of Hampton as the gold standard for clean limited stay hotels anymore.

Is anyone else seeing the same thing? Did I just get unlucky three stays in a row? I stayed at an Embassy Suites that was pretty clean, except for weird stains on the ac vents. And the Hilton Garden I stayed at was really clean (although the breakfast was pretty limited).
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Old Jul 13, 2022, 9:37 pm
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Hotels that don’t provide daily housekeeping are going to be less clean, have more wear & tear, and have more maintenance issues. It’s just going to take the hospitality industry (and its bean counters) a while to figure out what regular travelers intuitively know. There’s a hidden cost that has yet to be fully realized.
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Old Jul 13, 2022, 9:51 pm
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I stay in various Hamptons frequently and have noticed no such decline. In fact, they are often cleaner than full-service HH properties.
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Old Jul 13, 2022, 11:03 pm
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I think this depends on the specific property more than the brand. There is a Hampton Inn that I visit frequently in the Chicago area, they ask you to schedule housekeeping the night before so it’s as frequent as you want (I personally don’t want or need daily cleaning) and I think their service and cleanliness have been pretty consistent over the last 2 years..
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Old Jul 13, 2022, 11:06 pm
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Originally Posted by bitterproffit
I don't know if I had a string of bad luck, or if its a trend, but the last 3 Hampton Inns I have stayed at have been dirty. I remember first choosing Hamptons in the 90's because they were more consistent than some of the other chains. Always within my company's budget, where I needed to be, and simple and clean.

Then they started moving up market, but I found them still even nicer, and usually very clean.

During Covid, the rooms always smelled so fresh and clean.

Now, the rates are high, but the last 3 I stayed at were dumpy. Dirty showers, dirty toilets, broken furniture, stained carpets, etc. The rooms smelled musty and sour. The one last night was pretty clean, but the AC wasn't keeping up with the temp. The fan was feeble. I pulled out the filters and the change was immediate. They hadn't been cleaned in so long, they were blocking air flow. Breakfast items are skimpy and often items are missing. Two nights ago, I used the microwave in the snack area and it was filthy and covered with exploded food inside.

Meanwhile, they all have signs explaining that housekeeping is every 5 nights only. The one I stayed at in Syracuse appeared to have people staying for long stays as they worked on a construction contract or something.

I think this housekeeping change is causing them to cut back on housekeeping staff, and they are taking a lot of shortcuts. Lets face it, if someone is staying long term and you are only cleaning the room every 5 days, its not getting clean. And nothing is getting deep cleaned.

Interestingly, all the hotels were sold out. But I don't think of Hampton as the gold standard for clean limited stay hotels anymore.

Is anyone else seeing the same thing? Did I just get unlucky three stays in a row? I stayed at an Embassy Suites that was pretty clean, except for weird stains on the ac vents. And the Hilton Garden I stayed at was really clean (although the breakfast was pretty limited).
Were all three in the same general vicinity? Sad to say, but I find many hotels in the Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo area to be somewhat lacking in quality standards. I used to frequent the HI in Lake George, NY, and that one was quite a ways above the norm. That would be going back about 5-6 years, however.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 1:26 am
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You've got to read current reviews for properties before going. Conditions are all over the place. It isn't really about the brand anymore.

With that said I've had good experiences with Hampton Inn the past year. Though the maintenance and upkeep is looking a bit scruffier than in the past, I have encountered friendly employees and clean, quiet rooms.

I've had pretty poor experiences with Hilton Garden Inns on service and cleanliness that had 4.5/5 on Trip Advisor but all negative reviews in the past year or so and had I looked more closely I would not have gone to them.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 3:01 am
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As another poster already mentioned, this is a property specific issue rather than a brand issue. What a property is able to do/not do/doesn't want to do is controlled on a day to day basis by what the owner/management company allows to be spent on labor & controllables, not Hilton. The staffing of housekeeping and maintenance at most if not all select service properties has been trimmed at best and slashed at worst. The standard is supposed to be on demand opt-in housekeeping with a "full" clean being provided every 4th day. Does that happen everywhere? Of course not.

IME & IMHO, are corners getting cut now more than ever? Of course they are. How can you properly deep clean, maintain and PM rooms when occupancy is very high yet staffing is permanently cut to different degrees? The only possible great equalizer is that full QA audits are occurring now for the first time in two plus years and properties are failing them. Some changes will come out of that but time will tell long term if it's anything of substance (don't hold your breath).
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 6:18 am
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Hotels are owned and operated by many different distinct entities, each with their own management philosophies. It's been made clear that Hilton corporate's main priority is not managing a team of roving auditors to ensure that every one of these properties is in lockstep with a detailed brand standard. Thus there will be variation across properties. I am not sure why people continue to post these threads with sweeping generalizations based on sample sizes that are beyond statistically insignificant.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 6:20 am
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There was no corporate memo that went out to 2,500 Hamptons giving the OK to lax, sadder standards. When you come across dishevelment or disarray, or missing service elements, it's down to the individual operator.

I recently had a great, 10/10 stay at an HI in northern Michigan where the team was knocking itself out to provide a great time -- and an infuriating 2/10 stay at an HI in the DC metro where the operator had stripped every possible amenity from the customer experience and was clearing using the pandemic as a rationale for treating guests like the propane tanks you shove in and out of cages at Hone Depot.

You can't draw any conclusions about "Hampton Inn quality" from such data.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 6:43 am
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Originally Posted by flyme2
Were all three in the same general vicinity? Sad to say, but I find many hotels in the Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo area to be somewhat lacking in quality standards. I used to frequent the HI in Lake George, NY, and that one was quite a ways above the norm. That would be going back about 5-6 years, however.
Syracuse, Charleston WV, and Columbus OH.

It sounds like a string of bad luck.

I stayed in 2 in Europe this summer and they were spotless, but also well maintained and had daily housekeeping.

I don't really care if I have daily housekeeping on a multiple day stay, but I know that it has allowed hotels to get by with less staff.

Originally Posted by arlflyer
Hotels are owned and operated by many different distinct entities, each with their own management philosophies. It's been made clear that Hilton corporate's main priority is not managing a team of roving auditors to ensure that every one of these properties is in lockstep with a detailed brand standard. Thus there will be variation across properties. I am not sure why people continue to post these threads with sweeping generalizations based on sample sizes that are beyond statistically insignificant.
I am sorry your were bothered by a thread describing my recent experience and that you found it statistically insignificant, but I've read it again and I fail to see any 'sweeping generalizations'. I simply asked whether anyone is seeing the same issue.

I did note that every room had a sticker outlining the 'detailed brand standard' that obviously wasn't being followed.
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Last edited by Canarsie; Jul 14, 2022 at 1:12 pm Reason: Consolidated.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 7:07 am
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Originally Posted by arlflyer
Hotels are owned and operated by many different distinct entities, each with their own management philosophies. It's been made clear that Hilton corporate's main priority is not managing a team of roving auditors to ensure that every one of these properties is in lockstep with a detailed brand standard. Thus there will be variation across properties.
There is also massive levels of variation and interpretation from QA auditor to QA auditor. One can ding you for something like dirty tile grout in your public areas or having chips and marks on a table in the employee break room while another will say nothing or tell you it's a violation but they don't care because it's stupid so they move on.

About ten years ago the HWS I worked at nearly failed an audit (not that big of a deal if you do). Eight months later at the next one the score was 20+ points higher. Was there tons of money spent and new standards and LSOPs put into place? Nope. Nothing changed except the auditor. One turned a blind eye and the other had an agenda.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 7:31 am
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Originally Posted by bitterproffit
I am sorry your were bothered by a thread describing my recent experience and that you found it statistically insignificant, but I've read it again and I fail to see any 'sweeping generalizations'.
Sorry, almost every day someone posts a thread about this or that brand going downhill or implementing a global policy or such, all based on a couple experiences with a few properties in one geography. It's just a little tiring.


Originally Posted by bitterproffit
I fail to see any 'sweeping generalizations'
Your thread title literally asks if Hampton, a global brand, with thousands of locations, is declining in quality based on a very few data points. That is the definition of a sweeping generalization.

If we're going to use trivial numbers of data points to determine trends across an entire global brand, my recent Hampton stays have been great. QED!
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 7:55 am
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Originally Posted by The Road Goes On Forever

IME & IMHO, are corners getting cut now more than ever? Of course they are. How can you properly deep clean, maintain and PM rooms when occupancy is very high yet staffing is permanently cut to different degrees? .
This is the crux of the issue. Some ownership groups are content with cutting (almost) all costs while enduring high occupancy rates.

I stayed at a Homewood Suites last week that was essentially full. Every parking spot full. My room didn't get cleaned and they were short on toiletries. 3 out of the 7 machines in the gym were broken. A/C in my room was broken. (I found out the hotel was almost full when the front desk agent initially said they couldn't relocate me due to broken A/C. I pushed hard and they eventually "found" me a room.) A/C on the entire top floor was out. Manager's reception had been cut back to 1 day per week. Hallway leading to the gym was cluttered with heaps of unwashed laundry, broken A/C units, and old furniture. All this for $180/night. They operate like this because Hilton allows it, I guess.

Conversely, I frequent a central-Florida Hampton Inn that never stopped daily housekeeping during COVID. They also continue to pilot new breakfasts for Hilton Corporate (smoothies, chicken and waffles, etc.) It's one of my top 3 favorite Hamptons in the country. Rates are still exceptionally reasonable, as well.

It all boils down to the ownership group.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 8:02 am
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Originally Posted by arlflyer
Sorry, almost every day someone posts a thread about this or that brand going downhill or implementing a global policy or such, all based on a couple experiences with a few properties in one geography. It's just a little tiring.




Your thread title literally asks if Hampton, a global brand, with thousands of locations, is declining in quality based on a very few data points. That is the definition of a sweeping generalization.

If we're going to use trivial numbers of data points to determine trends across an entire global brand, my recent Hampton stays have been great. QED!
Key word: "ASKS"

And, I believe it is. Based upon my experiences. And I believe eliminating a service like daily housekeeping is the definition of declining service and quality. And it shows in the cleanliness of the rooms.
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Old Jul 14, 2022, 8:10 am
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Originally Posted by aww3583
I stayed at a Homewood Suites last week that was essentially full. Every parking spot full. My room didn't get cleaned and they were short on toiletries. 3 out of the 7 machines in the gym were broken. A/C in my room was broken. (I found out the hotel was almost full when the front desk agent initially said they couldn't relocate me due to broken A/C. I pushed hard and they eventually "found" me a room.) A/C on the entire top floor was out. Manager's reception had been cut back to 1 day per week. Hallway leading to the gym was cluttered with heaps of unwashed laundry, broken A/C units, and old furniture. All this for $180/night.
This sounds similar, in its own way, to my most recent Homewood stay.

My three most recent Hampton stays were miserable: 1) A dirty "premium" room which looked out onto a rooftop of HVAC equipment; 2) Another allegedly premium room that was also filthy and had safety issues (we left after two nights of the planned three); 3) A stay that was so bad Hilton Guest Relations refunded the points.

In this same time period, I had five stays at Holiday Inns or Holiday Inn Expresses. ALL were clean and with far better breakfast options than Hampton or Homewood. (I do remember when Homewood breakfasts excellent and with real china and flatware.)

They operate like this because Hilton allows it, I guess..
This! If Hilton corporate cared about the guest experience (in a way that used to be the case) they would crack down on these properties.

Last edited by cblaisd; Jul 14, 2022 at 8:16 am
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