Crowne Plaza Hong Kong Causeway Bay Master Thread

Old Nov 4, 09, 5:49 pm
  #1  
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Be careful with the currency conversation pitch at checkout

We had a pleasant stay there. The room and service were great. They were still working out a few minor kinks since it just opened but overall I would have given a 5 star if it weren't for the "scam" at checkout. When we checkout, the clerk asked if we'd like to lock in the US$ rate so we don't have to wait for our credit card to convert as the rate changes daily. We thought that would be good so we went ahead and accept their US rate. In hindsight, we should have asked what was the conversation rate they used. It turned out to be 7.47, far from the average of 7.75. In fact, our credit card used 7.749. So don't fall for that pitch about locking in your conversation rate!!! That's the only reason I gave a 3 start.
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Old Nov 4, 09, 5:53 pm
  #2  
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10% surcharge is standard

It is standard in Hong Kong for a surcharge of 10%. It applies to all hotels and I was told that it is similar to the hotel tax in the US. However, the hotel should have have specify in your the quote whether the tax is inclusive or not. I have in the past received quotes that says the quote is inclusive of the 10% surcharge.
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Old Nov 4, 09, 8:28 pm
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Okay if I want to be on the central side then this is a welcome addition for sure if they can keep prices under control. Otherwise, for 1.2-1.5K HKD I can stay at the IC GS in Kowloon and get lots of goodies as RA incl a very nice Club lounge.
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Old Nov 4, 09, 10:28 pm
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Originally Posted by jjhung88 View Post
It is standard in Hong Kong for a surcharge of 10%. It applies to all hotels and I was told that it is similar to the hotel tax in the US. However, the hotel should have have specify in your the quote whether the tax is inclusive or not. I have in the past received quotes that says the quote is inclusive of the 10% surcharge.
I am aware that a service charge is standard in Hong Kong. My point was that my reservation was confirmed without it but 10% was added in
several months later. In any case the hotel has agreed to waive it so I am happy.

Unless there is a rush of reports I'll report on my visit in about a week.
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Old Nov 5, 09, 2:45 am
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Originally Posted by jjhung88 View Post
We had a pleasant stay there. The room and service were great. They were still working out a few minor kinks since it just opened but overall I would have given a 5 star if it weren't for the "scam" at checkout. When we checkout, the clerk asked if we'd like to lock in the US$ rate so we don't have to wait for our credit card to convert as the rate changes daily. We thought that would be good [...]
That is never good, and that is not a CP scam but a legal credit card 'scam' that is all over the world, even at some ATMs. You can always and should always decline being billed in your currency to avoid terrible conversation rates on top of your abroad fee.
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Old Nov 5, 09, 12:03 pm
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by Chinatrvl View Post
That is never good, and that is not a CP scam but a legal credit card 'scam' that is all over the world, even at some ATMs. You can always and should always decline being billed in your currency to avoid terrible conversation rates on top of your abroad fee.
if I do an advanced purchase rate where I pay in advance, they charge in USD correct?

also, the currency rate doesn't matter too much because for the most part HKD is pegged to the USD. what I am worried about is the 3% that credit card companies like to charge on foreign transactions.
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Old Nov 5, 09, 8:46 pm
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Originally Posted by portfolioflyer View Post
if I do an advanced purchase rate where I pay in advance, they charge in USD correct?

also, the currency rate doesn't matter too much because for the most part HKD is pegged to the USD. what I am worried about is the 3% that credit card companies like to charge on foreign transactions.
You should be charged in whatever currency the hotel sets its rates. In this case it's Hong Kong Dollars. Your credit card company/bank will set the currency exchange and the fee. Check the terms of the confirmation before you accept it. Do not agree to the hotel doing the exchange to USD or anything else.
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Old Nov 10, 09, 7:45 am
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I've spent the past two days at the hotel. We booked a base level room on the Opening Special which included free internet and breakfast. We were upgraded to a Club King on a high floor. I have no idea whether this was some opening generosity or whether it will be standard for platinums.

First, the hotel in general. It is stylish, comfortable and well finished, certainly for a CP. Our room was large with a very good bed and all the usual features. The shower was excellent though the bathroom itself is austere with very basic toiletries that weren't replenished. The mini bar contains some beers, sodas and wine only. Internet costs HKD140.00 for 24 hours if you have to pay for it. It is not included in the club room rate. Soundproofing of the rooms from street noise is good.

The gym has some free weights and about 6 exercise machines. Maybe they are waiting on more equipment as there is spare room. Views from the gym are great.

The problem with a new hotel of course is they always open before they are finished. In the CP's case the roof top pool isn't working yet but it will be spectacular when it is operating. It's just long enough to do laps. The views are great. The night club next to it has lots of atmosphere.

The restaurant ("Kudos") is casual, attractive and low key. Breakfast was standard fare and not very inspiring (around HKD210.00 pp so not cheap) but the dinner we had there one night was excellent. It was a buffet and of very high quality for the price, currently reduced by 20%. With the reduction it came in about HKD260.00 pp.

There is a lounge on the ground floor that looked popular for coffee and cakes.

However, the highlight was the club. It's on the second floor and not overly exciting to look at. There will be 2 computers there when they arrive! (There is also a separate business centre which I didn't visit). And also, they haven't yet started to serve breakfast in the Club. However, they are currently sending club guests to the restaurant for breakfast. There is an excellent afternoon tea and a very good happy hour in the evening from 5.30 to 7.30pm. There is a self serve bar with a large array of all the spirits, wine and beers. The snacks were substantial and excellent quality. Certainly enough for a dinner for some! The only fear I have is that it is too good to last for a CP.

Service is enthusiastic and professional. They all seem proud of their new hotel. If I were to stay again I would certainly be looking for a club level upgrade or indeed would be prepared to pay for it. It seems very good value on current rates.

The hotel is about 100 metres from Exit A on the Causeway Bay MTR station. But it would be a hard hike with luggage as you walk a long way underground to the train.

All up, I think it will be amongst the best of the CP's and it has great potential. I'd happily return.
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Old Nov 13, 09, 7:35 am
  #9  
 
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my recent review

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/12816207-post1587.html
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Old Nov 14, 09, 4:27 pm
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Originally Posted by nicolas75 View Post
Nice report! Did your stay include Wednesday? If so, were you be able to see the horse racing from your hotel room on wednesday night? They do have horse racing on every Wed night and I believe it can be seen at most of the rooms on higher floors with Happy Valley view.
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Old Nov 15, 09, 12:53 am
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Originally Posted by GordonGordon View Post
They do have horse racing on every Wed night and I believe it can be seen at most of the rooms on higher floors with Happy Valley view.
You would need a room at a higher level and one on what I'd call the back side of the hotel. Those above the entrance look the other way. And for walkers and joggers the track is open in the mornings and is much more plesant than pounding HK streets.
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Old Nov 16, 09, 3:49 am
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Originally Posted by GordonGordon View Post
Did your stay include Wednesday? If so, were you be able to see the horse racing from your hotel room on wednesday night?
From room 2209, you can perfectly see it
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Old Nov 23, 09, 10:46 am
  #13  
 
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CP Causeway Bay Hong Kong

I stayed at the brand new Crown Plaza Causeway Bay Hong Kong two weeks ago using one of the four free nights I earned earlier this year. Could have used them at one of the two ICs in the Kowloon side of Hong Kong. But I called the brand new Crown Plaza at Causeway Bay and was told that I would be to an executive room with club access. Wow, that's quite unusual for a Crown Plaza, even more so for an award stay. So I jumped on it.

I wasn't disappointed. It's brand new and only couple minutes walk away from Time Square and the Causeway Bay metro station -- I always prefer the Hong Kong island side vs the Kowloon side, where the two ICs are. Upon check in, I was given a club room with lounge access, free breakfast and free internet. Even mini bar is free. What a pleasant surprise.

The room is modern. 40 inch flat TV on the wall with iPod docking station. There is even a mobile phone in the room that you can use in Hong Kong.

The staff at the hotel are friendly and eager to help. Didn't get a chance to try the outdoor swimming pool with an open bar next to it though.

I told the marketing director at the hotel that giving Platinum/Royal Ambassador free club access, even on an award stay, is a sure way to win royal customers. It sure beats how the two ICs in Hong Kong treat RAs. I would definitely come back. This will be my favorite IC property in Hong Kong, as long as the the upgrade policy remains as it is.

Last edited by TravellerOnline; Nov 23, 09 at 11:02 am
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Old Nov 24, 09, 12:53 am
  #14  
 
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My experience as Platinum Ambassador is a bit different than the OP (probably understandably so as I'm no RA) with my stay last week at the CP Hong Kong. I'm on a pay stay with the F&F rate and they upgraded me to a club room but with no club access nor free internet. (Internet at $40HKD/hr or $140HKD/24 hours) The club room was indeed a bit bigger than the Deluxe room (I was in one of those rooms earlier that week with the free nights promo under a non-status club member).

The rooms are good sized for HK standards, location is great for shopping (I found the location much better than IC HK, but you can't beat that harbor view there), rain shower which mounts on the ceilng is amazing (I would rate this the top 3 rain showers I've had in hotels), staff is eager to help and friendly (but lacks a bit of experience...more below), and bed very comfortable since it's brand new.

Maybe I'm using the IC HK (which I was there for a few nights the same week also) as standard but I think the staff in CP HK needs a bit more experience (can't complain as the hotel is brand new, staff are very friendly). The logistics for plat members is to have you check in at the club which is located at the 2nd level. Which I was sent to when I arrived at the lobby check-in. However, I end up waiting for about 20 minutes at the club desk since the staff was busy with another guest while the check-in clerk can simply check me in (it's not busy at the lobby at all) or verify that the club desk was indeed available. The staff at the club was apologetic but I think it can be better coordinated.

Overall it's a great place, fully recommended if you're in HK and looking for something that's not as pricey as the IC.
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Old Nov 24, 09, 6:49 am
  #15  
 
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thanks for the information from OP.
Same travel plan, i have 4 free night which i will spend in HK. I think i will take 1-2 night at IC HK and the remaining at CP.
Good to know good policy at this property
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