Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Discontinued Programs/Partners > Starwood | Starwood Preferred Guest
Reload this Page >

How low SPG can go? [Issues with stay at Mystique, Greece]

How low SPG can go? [Issues with stay at Mystique, Greece]

 
Old May 28, 14, 11:42 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Posts: 494
How low SPG can go? [Issues with stay at Mystique, Greece]

I have worked hard to accumulate enough SPG points so that I could take vacation that I can remember and celebrate our 20th anniversary. We opted to go to Santorini Greece and chose Mystique for our 5 nights stay. I redeemed huge amount of SPG points and was really looking forward for this trip. Finally our day had come and unfortunately it ended way too soon.

Arrived in Thira at about 10:00 am (on May 27th, 2014..yesterday as I write this) and driver from Mystique picked us up along with other couple. Arrived at the property and went to the reception. Staff up there advised that our room is not ready (it was about noon time) but gave us the brief tour of the property. We then decided to walk up towards town of Oia (called Iya) in beautiful warm sunny day. After 2 hrs. of walk we came back to reception to see if the rooms were ready (it was about 2:30) and thank God we walked into ROOM #15. First thing I wanted to do was to get freshened up after long day of traveling and walking under bright sun.

Our misery had just started.

As I started taking shower, I noticed that water is not draining and instead creeping up to my ankle. I just freaked out and got out in the middle of shower. I could not stand that dirty soapy water puddle. I quickly made a call to the reception by dialing 600 and they sent a plumber to see what is going on. In the meantime while washing my hand in the bathroom sink, same thing happened. Atleast water drained by it was so slow and one had to shut the water before it fully drained otherwise your hands could not stop touching the puddled water. So the plumber looks at the shower area and explains that there is "structural" problem. In details, the drain outlet in the bottom of the shower floor is about 3 inches above the bottom of the shower floor and that's why water is getting puddled. Wow, so he acknowledges that there is an issue and at the same time he looks at bathroom sink and he goes we know about this issue. He left and I called the reception to see if anything can be done as I need to take shower. In the meantime my wife had arranged the rooms (unpacking the bags) and I begin to connect my laptop to find out there was no wi-fi at all, so I had to make another call. So the guy showed to fix the wi-fi issue and surprisingly it started working. He left and so did the wi-fi.

At this time I was so pissed and it is about 4:30 and we are not even ready and dealing with basic issues. Finally a supervisor (Anisa) showed up at door and I explained her all the issues. She goes, this is not standard room and these are different type of showers where it is normal to have puddled water. I am going crazy with her statement. She left by saying we can move you to different room. I sure was ready. She showed me next door room (#14) and showed me shower first and it appeared to be working as expected but did not like the size of the room and the view and I felt it was downgraded room than what we were in. Being SPG Gold we look for upgrades and not the other way around, just because it had working shower. There's no way I was going to move into this room. So, after so many calls and discussions, I had lost my control and asked her to come down again (it was around 6:15). I have not taken showers yet. I let her know my frustration and also let her know these are basic things. I am not asking for much..all I am asking for a working shower, working bathroom sink and half way decent wi-fi. I understand I was in Greece and not in Silicon Valley. My issue is that they don't acknowledge they have issues. If they knew this bathroom has issues why are you assigning them to your guests before fixing it. She finally offered us either wine tasting or 2 spa package for 50 min. She also offered us to show 3 different suites next day (May 28th) after the guests have checked out so we could move there (as they are supposed to be either same or better than room #15). In the meantime she sent a technician with a booster and whola my wi-fi is now working. Why was this not placed in before guests check in is beyond me. This to me was cheap act on Mystique part.

Now around 7:30 PM, we left frustrated (wasted 5 hrs dealing with nonsense). Before we left I left a bad review on TripAdvisor about this property. I just shared my experience with this hotel and how it has wasted our time annoyed us. I did not know that it takes a while to post the bad reviews in TA. About 12:30 am or so when we walked into our room, there was cake sitting for us saying

"Happy Anniversary". Too late for cake and we went bed.

Today (May 28th) we got up at around 8:30 am or so and we decided to chill out and sat outside in our private balcony. Around 11:30 am or so the same supervisor comes and tells us that "owner" (Eliopoulos) of this property is here and would like to speak with us. We then went up to the reception to meet this guy. Our life has changed from this point on.

He says "I want you you pack your stuff right now and get out or I will call the police." I said there is no way, I paid for my stay and I would like to talk to SPG Gold desk. All I have done this far is legit complaint about basic things that broken. I have paid hefty amount of points for this room and cannot even have basic necessity is absolute absurd. He could not take my negative review on TA. He goes on saying "I don't care who you call SPG or President of your country, I own this property and I am throwing you out...get out now". We were stunned and shocked what we were hearing. We had not imagined this in 100 years. We finally walked down to our room and start packing our stuff again. While we were packing I also made calls to SPG and send whole bunch of emails to SPG letting them know what just happened. Around 1:30 PM or so left our room, as I was trying to make our next plan. We decided to cut our trip short and plan to leave but I could not change my tickets as it already had one free stop over. I used my United miles to fly business class. So we decided to hit the airport but the property refused to provide the hotel shuttle to take us back to the airport. We paid 50 euros to get to the airport. It was around 3:00 pm. I spent about 4 hrs in the airport making s many calls to United, US Air to make something happen for us but they were all useless. Now it is about 6:30 PM and we were tired (mentally and physically). I may have spent about 30 Euros just on buying phone cards. Finally I approached a taxi guy outside the airport (Thira is very small airport) and asked him if there is any hotel close by (in Fira). We found a hotel where we could find a shelter. And that's where we are right now. Paying 65 Euros a night, but guess what...this place has working shower, amazing wi-fi, free breakfast and very quiet. Don't get me wrong when I say this but this hotel knows how to run a good hotel.

I made so many calls to SPG and finally spoke with Gold desk. I had a complaint file opened by this time and explained the whole situation (which is still pending and may take some time).

My aim here is to let the world know what lies behind so called "Cat 7" properties. Just because I asked for GOLD privileges, working shower, working sink and working wi-fi. Writing reviews in TA is not a crime. It is platform where one should be free to post a honest review about experiences just like flyertalk.

I am blown away and cannot wait till I am out of this place. This property is nothing but a dump. I will have legal actions against SPG for sure. They have caused so much of mental stress on day of our 20th anniversary. We did not have a roof, we did not eat anything the whole day and running around without shower the whole day. This happens only in places like this. I would not wish this on my enemy. I will not generalize this but proof is in the pudding. Look at the economy of this country and I believe it is people like Eliopoulos who make the world worst place to live. They should not be running operation like this.

When did this become where SPG don't own this property and it is own by this guy. Right now we are so distressed and really want out of this country. We are not enjoying it.
ngupta is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 12:11 am
  #2  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 693
terrible terrible terrible story, but if you leave out the dramatics, you'll probably get better results. you aren't going to get reimbursed for mental stress. etc.
imgonnafly is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 12:18 am
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Programs: SPG LT Plat & Plat 100, SWA A+ & CP
Posts: 1,072
Note to self... Don't complain on TA until your stay is over.

You should get a book deal out of this one.
jb3t is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 12:20 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: New Orleans, AA EXP, DL PM, SPG PLT, HH Diamond
Posts: 3,750
This is a horrible situation, and is unacceptable. I would try to get in touch with the Starwood corporate office ASAP. They need to rectify this and pay for another hotel. You should also receive additional compensation..
aceflyer2 is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 1:10 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: NYC
Programs: AA EXP, Hilton GLD, Marriott Plat, NEXUS/GE
Posts: 2,873
Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
I redeemed huge amount of SPG points and was really looking forward for this trip.
To be clear, this is an issue with an individual property and not the SPG program.

Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
Being SPG Gold we look for upgrades and not the other way around, just because it had working shower.
Upgrades are not guaranteed. Was the new room at least as good as the type of room that you booked? (Putting aside the possibility that it was worse than the original room they gave you.)

Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
He says "I want you you pack your stuff right now and get out or I will call the police."
Being forced out of your hotel room is a key part of the story; the issues with the wifi aren't.

Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
I may have spent about 30 Euros just on buying phone cards.
When traveling abroad, Skype is your friend.

Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
I will have legal actions against SPG for sure. They have caused so much of mental stress on day of our 20th anniversary.
Threatening SPG with legal action is likely to get your complaint directed to their lawyers (who will promptly stonewall your attempts fo compensation), rather than someone who can offer you a guesture of goodwill so you can move on.

Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
When did this become where SPG don't own this property and it is own by this guy.
Many hotel chains have independently owned and operated hotels. This is not unique to SPG or Greece.
FlyerChrisK is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 1:37 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New York, NY
Programs: AA ExPl, DL PM, UA Silver, Hyatt Globalist, Marriott Titanium, probably some others
Posts: 2,106
It's hard to sympathize too much with the histrionics regarding the sink and wi-fi and the possible room downgrade, especially given how you're repeatedly emphasizing the fact that you're SPG Gold (including in all caps in your TripAdvisor review). Your standards might not be the same as somebody else's, especially in terms of room quality and wi-fi. You say that you couldn't stand the backed-up drain; others might grin and bear it. In either case, the hotel tried to move you to a different room when one opened up. They even tried sending you an anniversary cake; I'm not sure how they were supposed to know that you weren't returning until after midnight (or that cake after midnight is too late for you). I don't think the hotel really did a poor job of service recovery.

With that being said, obviously, kicking you out of the hotel is totally unacceptable. It's also not SPG's fault, given that they weren't involved in the decision and the franchisee kicked you out of the hotel, so as others have said, I would strongly advise against threatening to sue SPG, as that's an easy way to get them off of your side. Work with Customer Care and I'm sure you'll get compensated for the situation.
steveholt is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 1:55 am
  #7  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: India
Programs: Bonvoy Ambassador & Lifetime Titanium, IHG Plat, HH Gold, Trident Plat, DL Diamond, AI Maharajah
Posts: 27,914
Originally Posted by steveholt View Post
With that being said, obviously, kicking you out of the hotel is totally unacceptable. It's also not SPG's fault, given that they weren't involved in the decision and the franchisee kicked you out of the hotel, so as others have said, I would strongly advise against threatening to sue SPG, as that's an easy way to get them off of your side. Work with Customer Care and I'm sure you'll get compensated for the situation.
i agree....this would be the right way to go about it....complain to spg corporate & see what kind of a response you get....
Keyser is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 2:24 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: HEL
Programs: SPG/Accor/NCH-P IHG-S HH-D CC-G, BA/A3-G AY-P, Octopus
Posts: 5,083
The TA review was written 2 days ago from a 1 post reviewer. Do "amex traveler" reviews not get pre-screened like other reviews? I'm surprised the review has even posted at this point.

I agree with other posters - this is not an SPG issue it's an issue with a property called Mystique in Greece.
remymartin is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 2:48 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Formerly known as attorney28
Programs: BA G, LH SEN, Hyatt Lifetime Glob, Marriott Lifetime Plat, HH Dmd, IC Amb, Sixt Dmd, Avis/Hertz Pres
Posts: 6,513
All the other details about sink, wifi, etc. sound a bit hysterical and allow the reader to mentally speculate on how the writer of the post might have behaved in the hotel, but the point of the story is it is completely unacceptable to throw someone out of a booked hotel room because one doesn't like the tripadvisor review the person wrote.

Starwood should get rid of hotels from its chain where the owner or general manager of the hotel behaves like some banana republic dictator.
Football Fan is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 3:38 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Singapore
Programs: JL Sapphire | Marriott LT Silver | GE / TSA-Pre
Posts: 6,742
Mystique, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Santorini

I think the Hotel owner snapped.

Wow this Cat 7 hotel only have 22 suites in the whole property, must be some exclusive place.

OP did not mention that the hotel owner threw him out in the TA review it seems.
lcpteck is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 3:41 am
  #11  
Moderator: British Airways Executive Club, Marriott Bonvoy
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Englandshire
Programs: SPG LT Plat, BA G, BD*LG, MG Blue+ ...
Posts: 13,290
Originally Posted by FlyerChrisK View Post
To be clear, this is an issue with an individual property and not the SPG program
I have amended the thread title accordingly.

/mod
Oxon Flyer is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 3:43 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: West Coast, USA
Programs: Skywards Platinum
Posts: 3,747
In your TA post you stated:

Originally Posted by ngupta View Post
I would never stay here and I would not recommend this.

<snip>

As I said hopes were high...this place is a pure dump. Cannot stand this place.
While I would never condone the actions of the owner, your post surely was designed to kick him below the belt.

While you may have been upset, I highly doubt that any rational person would consider a drainage issue in a single room, and weak wifi, would make any hotel, let alone Mystique, a "pure dump". The hotel tried to find a solution for you, an alternate room for the first night and a selection of suites the next day, plus an anniversary cake.

From what I see you decided to pull the first punch via the hyperbole in your review, rather than give them a chance to follow through with their service recovery, and you did it while you were still at the hotel, so the person you hurt the most with your review was able to confront you.

Originally Posted by lcpteck View Post
OP did not mention that the hotel owner threw him out in the TA review it seems.
That is because the review was left before the owner threw him out.

Let's put this in perspective:

1) OP had a drainage issue in his shower. Because the water puddled in the shower he refused to take a shower.
2) OP said the water drained slowly from the sink.
3) OP said the wifi was weak.

Hotel management did the following:

1) They sent a plumber to try to fix the problem.
2) When the problem couldn't be fixed they offered to move him to an adjacent room.
3) When OP didn't like the size or view of the adjacent room, they offered to show him 3 suites the following day that he can choose from.
4) They offered him a choice of a wine tasting or 2 spa packages as a service recovery.

After this the OP decided to write a review on Trip Advisor stating the hotel is a dump, he would never stay there, and that he can not stand the place.

IMHO, I think the hotel did try what it could to find a solution for the OP. If the others rooms were full, except for #14, what exactly was the OP expecting the hotel to do?

Last edited by whimike; May 29, 14 at 4:09 am
whimike is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 3:45 am
  #13  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: All over
Programs: Most
Posts: 10,840
Originally Posted by lcpteck View Post

OP did not mention that the hotel owner threw him out in the TA review it seems.
The owner threw out the guest AFTER the TA review was published.
holtju2 is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 3:48 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Singapore
Programs: JL Sapphire | Marriott LT Silver | GE / TSA-Pre
Posts: 6,742
Originally Posted by holtju2 View Post
The owner threw out the guest AFTER the TA review was published.
Ah you're right! Damn my stomachache is affecting my braincells!!
lcpteck is offline  
Old May 29, 14, 3:54 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 7
read the review on ta. "pure garbage" is not the right award to what the hotel tried to do (fix the wi-fi, offer spa/ wine, offer other suite.)
rren is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: