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Hyatt Churchill London REVIEW - MASTER THREAD

Hyatt Churchill London REVIEW - MASTER THREAD

Old Feb 19, 06, 7:47 pm
  #76  
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Originally Posted by Globehopper
It seems most of the recent posts are from Diamond level members.

Alas, I'm dropping down from Diamond to Plat for a forthcoming stay after February. Just wondering how Plat treatment is? It seems from reading reviews there are two Churchills-- the non club rooms which sound like non renovated rooms, and the better maintained club level rooms.

Insights for Plat treatment (i.e. room type, upgrades if any, RC access) appreciated.

TIA.
I am afraid I can not advise you fully here. You may want to contact the hotel for further clarification
What I can say is no rooms are currently renovated to my understanding. So I don't think that it matters.
And they are all in need of some updating. None the less they are all well maintained.I had a suite and a nice guest room.
Fully comfortable with superior beds to the Grand Bed that Hyatt has invested heavily in.
I am concerned when they renovate they will take away the nice beds.
My one bit of advice pay for Regency Club access.
If I were not a Diamond this is one hotel where the cost would be justified by the excellence of the Regency Club team and its dedicated service and value provided.
IMO it is difficult to have a bad stay here.
Let us assume you only use the lobby dining and lounging facilities and don't purchase access to the Regency Club. It will still be an excellent experience
with another first class team on the ground floor.
Enjoy your stay ^
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Old Mar 15, 06, 8:04 pm
  #77  
 
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Reality Check

Well, I hate to burst everyone's bubble here, but I just returned from the Churchill and was quite disappointed. It was my first non-U.S. Hyatt stay.

- At check-in, they did not have me listed as a Diamond member, but rather as a mere Gold. This despite having booked on hyatt.com.

- No Diamond Amenity offered. At check-out, when I asked again if the hotel offered a Diamond Amenity, the clerk did not know what I was talking about. After consulting with a manager, he told me an amenity was only offered if you presented a voucher at check-in. (Was he thinking of the Platinum voucher?) He deducted the cost of Internet service as a goodwill gesture.

- No rooms on Regency Club floors available, therefore was assigned a plain-Jane room on the third floor. The drapes were riddled with holes in the shape of cat claws: some kitty must have been crawling up them. Of course, following non-U.S. policy, access to the Regency Club was denied.

- The sole Diamond benefit received was free breakfast in the restaurant.

For one-third the price, I could have stayed at the Marriott Maida Vale in a nicer, larger room.

Beware, YMMV at this property. It's not all roses.
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Old Mar 16, 06, 10:43 am
  #78  
 
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Originally Posted by AlexB
- No Diamond Amenity offered. At check-out, when I asked again if the hotel offered a Diamond Amenity, the clerk did not know what I was talking about. After consulting with a manager, he told me an amenity was only offered if you presented a voucher at check-in. (Was he thinking of the Platinum voucher?) He deducted the cost of Internet service as a goodwill gesture.
I always receive a full bottle of wine and some fruits after checking in. I presumed that was the diamond amenity.
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Old Mar 16, 06, 12:51 pm
  #79  
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Smile Those Bursting Bubbles

Originally Posted by AlexB
Well, I hate to burst everyone's bubble here, but I just returned from the Churchill and was quite disappointed. It was my first non-U.S. Hyatt stay.

- At check-in, they did not have me listed as a Diamond member, but rather as a mere Gold. This despite having booked on hyatt.com.

- No Diamond Amenity offered. At check-out, when I asked again if the hotel offered a Diamond Amenity, the clerk did not know what I was talking about. After consulting with a manager, he told me an amenity was only offered if you presented a voucher at check-in. (Was he thinking of the Platinum voucher?) He deducted the cost of Internet service as a goodwill gesture.

- No rooms on Regency Club floors available, therefore was assigned a plain-Jane room on the third floor. The drapes were riddled with holes in the shape of cat claws: some kitty must have been crawling up them. Of course, following non-U.S. policy, access to the Regency Club was denied.

- The sole Diamond benefit received was free breakfast in the restaurant.

For one-third the price, I could have stayed at the Marriott Maida Vale in a nicer, larger room.

Beware, YMMV at this property. It's not all roses.
I am sorry to hear about your disappointment with your stay at the Hyatt Regency in London.
Would certainly bring it to the attention of Hyatt Consumer Affairs. I too like poster Tfung did receive wine and fruit that was highly satisfactory and interpreted that as the Diamond welcome amenity as well.
If you didn’t receive any amenity during your stay a simple call to the good folks at Gold Passport will probably resolve the issue with a 1k welcome amenity bonus as a good will gesture. I have run into the confusion even in North America Hyatt Hotels and consider it the very small stuff in a mostly great program.

What I can say from thousands of nights on the road in recent years that this is an excellent hotel with caring management who took their valuable time to share with me their excitement and passion being under the Hyatt flag and management.
Like every 4 or 5 star property no hotel company is immune from failures.
When a hotel has a bad track record and the failures are numerous I am all for joining in and blowing the whistle.

It of my opinion you probably had one of the more isolated experiences.
Not that the hotel is absolved from the issues either.....
I would have been delighted to have experienced breakfast in the restaurant as you did. It is a beauty and had more choices then the Regency Club. My lunches and dinners there were excellent as London standards typically go. That said perhaps I speak with forked tongue as I wouldn’t have wanted to miss the Regency Club service experience either. It was clearly one of the best in recent years at any Hyatt.

In all fairness one of your concerns the ongoing Hyatt lounge exclusion for Diamond members troubles me.
And from sources that I trust it troubles Hyatt Gold Passport management too.
It is an area that hopefully will be re-addressed down the road now that very strict controls are in place for eligibility to earn in the program. I do know of a few members who packed up and left Hyatt over the issue. I think it really depends on how much international travel one does and what properties they select and the size of the lounge.
Oddly I cancelled a revenue stay with Hyatt as a Diamond and took an award stay in another competing program at a lower elite tier and had the guaranteed access! So I think I speak for many that it is a concern for a number of us.
Room renovations are coming……My room was certainly in better condition then what you describe.

My suggestions for less bumpy roads and bubbles that don’t go as easily bust would be

• One week or more before departure always email or call the hotel before arrival. A reservations manager or front office manager is usually an excellent way to facilitate the heads up on your arrival. A great opportunity to remind them of your status. This is especially important if it is a first time stay and there is no guest history on you. Especially with a hotel that is still learning and polishing their transition/procedures from the old Priority Club Program

• When a room is clearly to your dissatisfaction be sure to get a front office manager and or duty manager to see if they can resolve the situation. This is where Hyatt has been highly successful over its competitors in my experience. They usually will make a considerable effort. Usually in my experience it is rare that I have to call in the first place

Happier smoother upcoming stays
Cheers

Last edited by 777 global mile hound; Mar 19, 06 at 9:01 am
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Old Mar 16, 06, 7:36 pm
  #80  
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Thumbs up Another great--albeit short--stay at the Churchill

A weekend night--midafternoon arrival, very early departure the next day--for 2 rooms using 2 FFNs (thanks again, Hyatt, for the time extension). Check in on the RC floor where they were kind enough to give us both rooms, and let me know graciously that they were not required to upgrade the 2nd room.

As always, wonderful staff. Since all but one were out the most of the evening, only one of us enjoyed the cocktail hour, and we were out before 6am, so no breakfast, but nonetheless, only good things to say about this property and its staff. Sorry that AlexB did not have a good experience: do be sure to give it another go!
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Old Mar 18, 06, 10:04 am
  #81  
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Hotel Has Declined!

Originally Posted by AlexB
777:

Thanks for the thoughtful response. I realize most people have been treated well at this property, which made it all the more frustrating not to be.

I will contact GP Customer Service about this, as you recommend.
I too have noticed a declined in this hotel on recent stays. The physical aspects are just plain run down. Receipt of diamond amenity is hit or miss. RC staff attitude has gone done. The Manager Mike Grey is seldom at the hotel and does not respond to issues in a timely manner. RC is small and very crowed. Little is done to assist early arriving guests. RC check-in staff are seldom at their desk. Check-out in main lobby is very slow.

I recently stayed at the Marriott Park Lane. Told them of my recent experiences at the Hyatt Churchill. Was upgraded to suite and club level. Given the card of the general manager and encourage to contact him when I would be visiting the hotel so he could "ensure my comfort".

One note, upon arriving for my second stay at the Marriott Park Lane, I called from the airport (arrivig at 8 am) was told by the front desk, no problem, your room will be ready by the time you get here. Guess what, it was and I was again upgraded. The rooms are new, the beeds great.

Until the Churchill is fully renovated, I wold advise others to give the Marriott a try.
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Old Mar 18, 06, 12:17 pm
  #82  
 
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I recently went back to visit the Carlton Towers... I haven't stepped foot inside ever since it ceased to become a park hyatt a few years ago... While the lobby ambience, etc were similar to before, the rooms have been completely renovated and I was quite pleased with what I saw. Since the hyatt churchillis going under renovation the next few months, and the room capacity has been cut in half, I have decided to stay at the Carlton towers until the renovations are complete. Ohh.. how I wish it was still the park hyatt...
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Old Mar 18, 06, 7:56 pm
  #83  
 
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AlexB,

The Diamond amenity of wine (end of Feb down to half a bottle) and fruit is waiting for you in your room on arrival. I think the issue is that somehow your status was not showing so they did not put you on the amenity list.
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Old Mar 19, 06, 3:20 am
  #84  
 
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Travelbear - totally agree with you ! I miss the health club/pool area of the Carlton Towers !
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Old Mar 19, 06, 8:56 am
  #85  
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Originally Posted by Ducatibiker
Travelbear - totally agree with you ! I miss the health club/pool area of the Carlton Towers !
Agree that the current health club is inadequate especially when compared to the excellent facility at the former Park Hyatt Carlton Tower.That said while the fitness facility was good at the Carlton Tower air conditioning wasn't especially during those warm summer months when the sun baked through those glass panels
The one suggestion I wanted to make to the hotel was the health club which while attractive ceratinly lacks. Or the possibility of a local partnership club which I have done many times in London and elsewhere.
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Old Mar 19, 06, 9:12 am
  #86  
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Originally Posted by travelbear
I recently went back to visit the Carlton Towers... I haven't stepped foot inside ever since it ceased to become a park hyatt a few years ago... While the lobby ambience, etc were similar to before, the rooms have been completely renovated and I was quite pleased with what I saw. Since the hyatt churchillis going under renovation the next few months, and the room capacity has been cut in half, I have decided to stay at the Carlton towers until the renovations are complete. Ohh.. how I wish it was still the park hyatt...
Glad to hear they fixed the rooms at the Carlton Tower mine was just average with uncomfortable beds.The only aspects I liked about the former Carlton Tower was the location and health club.Everything else for my personal taste was undesirable from the snooty service and the overpriced lack luster below average F&B.The elegant surroundings couldn't make up the difference.At the Churchill there is a a luncheon special and early pre theatre dinner menu including wine that has very reasonable set prices. which for the caliber of the quality offered outstanding.Probably mores so because dining in London usually fails to impress me unless I second mortgage my house for dinner to be satisfied
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Old Mar 19, 06, 12:38 pm
  #87  
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Talking More information/feedback then you could want to your post

Originally Posted by SethLevy
I too have noticed a declined in this hotel on recent stays. The physical aspects are just plain run down. Receipt of diamond amenity is hit or miss. RC staff attitude has gone done. The Manager Mike Grey is seldom at the hotel and does not respond to issues in a timely manner. RC is small and very crowed. Little is done to assist early arriving guests. RC check-in staff are seldom at their desk. Check-out in main lobby is very slow.

I recently stayed at the Marriott Park Lane. Told them of my recent experiences at the Hyatt Churchill.
Until the Churchill is fully renovated, I wold advise others to give the Marriott a try.
I disagree with your overall assessment but respect as I do all in our community your opinions.
And I know you personally from the past here in the Hyatt forum to be a bright well traveled and educated FT community member.All our experiences will always vary widely without question.
In my own experience the hotel was a far cry from being considered run down
Had the pleasure of traveling with a professional photographer in our group who did some great shots of the hotel.
I am going to get their permission to post some here.
The lobby floor and public areas were so elegant I stopped and just took it all in. Including the fireplace and world class surroundings and floral displays. The dining and bar areas just awesome. The hallways while of the older world variety (not my taste) have British charm and are very well kept. There is a sense of history much like the Park Hyatt Philadelphia.I typically like modern futuristic hotels and yet I enjoyed all surroundings even in the small Regency Club with its excellent service.

A Diamond amenity upon my arrival doesn't make or break my perception of the stay. Sure it’s nice when everything goes perfectly.These mini bumps happen at every program from time to time after arrival to the hotel
If the hotel offers a good amenity or choice great. If they don't bring it after I order it,take for ever to deliver what is ordered or of poor quality that’s another story.
In one hotel (not London but in the US) they told me they never heard of a 1K Diamond amenity.
I simply called GP upon my return home who simply added it and politely refused the hotel offer of Ritz crackers and cheese.

Regarding the Regency Club
Every day as in any hotel it is a different show/performance and outcome.Schedules change folks go on vacation, people call in sick. I would be surprised if the hotel has had that drastic a change in less then 60 days. But if they have closed down many rooms as other have stated for renovations perhaps they cut back staff at the same time?
If there was a busy check out I would check out in the Regency Club
If staff weren't present I would pick up the phone and ask someone meet me upstairs.
Especially if time was of concern upon my departure.
It is of my way of thinking as the guest that part of my satisfaction as a guest is knowing how to deal with the strengths and weaknesses of any hotel
While I like to think that every hotel is perfect and has its act 100% nailed down ?I have never found one that I can't find a few wrinkles in without looking very far.

Management Concerns
Mike Grey GM is a very busy man these days running operations and supervising ongoing renovations.
He has won my respect and I think I speak for many when I say that of many Gold Passport members as well.
If he or one of his colleagues fails to follow-up with you at all then that would be another story.
Your satisfaction at Hyatt Hotels is of supreme importance to Hyatt. It would be my suggestion to contact his executive assistants if he is unavailable or the hotels Regency Club manager who is one of the nicest folks I have had the pleasure of meeting anywhere on the road. They simply don't come any better......
The other contact that is always helpful at any Hyatt is the in house guest relations manager
The individual who is in charge of quality guest assurance.
I personally save a call to the GM when all other in house contacts have failed and the very last contact if need be to Hyatt Consumer Affairs out in Omaha

You see these individuals names/emails on your receipt typically at check out for in house guest standard assurance.
By all means contact these folks while you are in house to say what is working or not. That is when they can make it all right if at all possible.

When I do call Hyatt Consumer Affairs it is because all diplomatic and reasonable
efforts with the hotel while in house or the hotels personal follow-ups have completely failed
. My frustration has to hit an all time high to do so.Hyatt has consistently proven to me historically that if it matters to me then it certainly matters to Hyatt with rare exception and the concerns reasonable enough.
After my 50 plus nights last year that involved one or two phone calls to Hyatt Consumer Affairs. I would say Hyatt has an excellent track record overall.
And while some other failures took place during those 50 plus nights last year the hotels fixed any of the problems by my simply contacting somebody in the hotel. The way it should be. ^

Regarding Marriott
Now I am not a big Marriott fan personally though dabble once in awhile in their program. What I do give them reasonable credit for is service standards. However my number one preference is Hyatt.As a former Platinum member last I looked Marriott had some interesting bonus point offers or gift certificate offers but nothing that resembled
"Faster Free Nights" or the standard of Hyatt Diamond treatment consistency overall.When Marriott Rewards finds a way to equal the value of participating in Gold Passport count on me to be luggage and brief case in hand at the front of their property doors.
As long as Hyatt repeats their past program generosity along with the consistent high overall standards I continue to hang my hat at most Hyatt’s

I know where to find better hotels in London then the The Churchill it's a great hotel city IMO
Can I find a better value combined with an exceptional program and one I do business in reasonable trust with if the stay fails? I highly doubt it.

If the Marriott is working for you great by all means move your business over I would too.
After 75 nights in their program you can be a top tier elite member.
Although I have a few pet peeves with eligible rates in the GP program since the changes I still remain committed to all and anything Hyatt features including the very nice Hyatt Regency The Churchill in London
Unless overwhelmingly the stays are all start to echo in as consistently poor and the hotel becomes unresponsive. I see no clear signs of that at present and for today eagerly look forward to my next visit at the Hyatt Regency in London.
Thanks for your post on FT and the update of your recent experience.Ny all means please let us know if you decide to give them another chance down the road before or after the renovations
Cheers

Last edited by 777 global mile hound; Mar 19, 06 at 12:51 pm
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Old Mar 21, 06, 4:37 am
  #88  
 
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In my half a dozen or so stays there since it became a Hyatt, I've certainly had some bumps--e.g., had to check in downstairs once when no one was available at the RC and did not get the Diamond amenity (which I'm sure is the fruit bowl, 2 bottles of water, and bottle of wine) for 2 days until I asked for it; on my last stay I was given a dreadful room by an RC employee who acted like he was doing me a big favor--and I would certainly agree the RC is small, cramped, and often overcrowded. I'd also say that the personalities of the concierge staff downstairs vary from nice to less than, but even the nicest are not generally as knowledgeable as I'd wish them to be. There are obviously many better (and generally more expensive London hotels), and a number of generally equivalent to slightly better ones (that may have other bumps) often available at better rates. I've returned there in part for the stay credit and the ability to use FFN's, and in part for the RC (even overcrowded as it can be) and its staff and the relative comfort of the rooms and beds (except for last time!) With construction around the bend, though, I'm looking even more than usual for reasonably-priced alternatives.
Speaking of which, if anyone has stayed at a hotel during construction and can comment on the ability to nap during work hours, I'd appreciate it. I'm trying to decide whether to risk a one weekday night stay at the Churchill in April, but will definitely need to get a couple of hours of sleep in after arrival and psossibly during construction hours.
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Old Mar 22, 06, 11:24 pm
  #89  
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Originally Posted by rfrost
In my half a dozen or so stays there since it became a Hyatt, I've certainly had some bumps--e.g., had to check in downstairs once when no one was available at the RC and did not get the Diamond amenity (which I'm sure is the fruit bowl, 2 bottles of water, and bottle of wine) for 2 days until I asked for it; on my last stay I was given a dreadful room by an RC employee who acted like he was doing me a big favor--and I would certainly agree the RC is small, cramped, and often overcrowded. I'd also say that the personalities of the concierge staff downstairs vary from nice to less than, but even the nicest are not generally as knowledgeable as I'd wish them to be. There are obviously many better (and generally more expensive London hotels), and a number of generally equivalent to slightly better ones (that may have other bumps) often available at better rates. I've returned there in part for the stay credit and the ability to use FFN's, and in part for the RC (even overcrowded as it can be) and its staff and the relative comfort of the rooms and beds (except for last time!) With construction around the bend, though, I'm looking even more than usual for reasonably-priced alternatives.
Speaking of which, if anyone has stayed at a hotel during construction and can comment on the ability to nap during work hours, I'd appreciate it. I'm trying to decide whether to risk a one weekday night stay at the Churchill in April, but will definitely need to get a couple of hours of sleep in after arrival and psossibly during construction hours.
Just got back from a stay at The Dorchester (on Park Lane). It was great. Although my room was small. The hotel was not very busy. If you contact the Rooms Director directly, the hotel will usually match any corporate rate you would have at other hotels in the immediate area. For instance, they matched my 185 pound corp rate. They also had a special promotion for 235 including breakfast and a bottle of champ.

Cheaper hotels are the Marriott Park Lane at 160 basic corp rate, SAS Portman, they listed rate of 145 and the London Hilton on Park Lane was 149, including VAT and one dinner (Easter Special). I am told the Four Seasons offers a general corp rate upon request of 199 as well. I have stayed there before and generally not been impressed by the service.

I think the point is that there are many hotels out there in London that are both cheaper than the Churchill and provide better service and not as run down.

I hope others will use this time to try other hotels and find the one that fits best.
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Old Mar 23, 06, 1:16 am
  #90  
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SethLevy, those rates you cite for the other hotels sound good, especially during renovation at the Churchill. My last experience at the Churchill also made me feel that the overall property was ready for renovation, although the room I was upgraded to (a suite) was fine. However, I welcome hearing about price-competitive alternatives, thanks.

Rfrost, I've stayed at hotels under renovation where I couldn't hear any extra sound at all, and I've also stayed at hotels where it sounded like concrete sawing was going on under the bed. Every case is different, you take your chances. What's amazing is how many hotels "forget" to tell you they are being renovated when you book online or via central reservations.
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