Vivanta by Taj - Dwarka, New Delhi - Ratting Three Stars
I would have rated the Vivanta by Taj - Dwarka, New Delhi hotel over all Four Stars but for the last few hours in the hotel. I stayed in the hotel Sep, 2017. I was on three cities tour to India. I booked my trip through Culture Holidays India tour operator. This review will demonstrate how lake of front desk staff and managers training greatly impact hotel gusts experience.
I took seven days-six nights tour of India that included the major three cities (Golden Triangle) in Northern India. The three cities were Delhi, the capital of India, Agra which was once the capital of the India and Jaipur. The tour company was Culture holidays. The tour company did a great job in providing five stars hotels for the duration of the tours. Read my Culture Holidays review.
The three hotels were: Vivanta by Taj - Dwarka, New Delhi, Jaypee Palace - Agra and JW Marriott- Resort & Spa Jaipur. Three hotels rated five stars, by western standard.
I have traveled to more than forty two countries, stayed in No Stars hotels in Africa to Seven Stars hotels. Staying in five stars hotel; you expect five stars service and accommodation. The true measure of Five Star hotel is how will the staff go about fixing any issues that may develop with your stay not when everything goes great with your stay.
The Vivanta hotel has good modern designed rooms. The lobby is open and welcoming. I rate the hotel main restaurant 3 ½ stars. It is open buffet.
The hotel restaurant is not as elegant as the hotels lobby or rooms. I appreciated the separation of the Western food from the Indian food in the layout of the buffet. The food selection and quality are average. The service was poor! You can service your service but if you ask for special order from the kitchen or a cup of coffee or cold drink, you could wait as much as fifteen minutes to get it. The restaurant gets very crowded during breakfast and dinner. Clearly not have enough tables to serve guests. You could wait ten to fifteen minutes to be seated. Once you are seated you get the feeling that you are rushed by the table cleaning brigade.
The staff is nice and welcoming. The front lobby and front desk staff most likely selected for their beautiful (ladies) and very handsome (gentleman) appearance. They spoke very good English and clearly educated. But I think the entire staff of the hotel, including management is not trained to handle guests problems and issues timely and efficiently.
The problems and Issues I experienced during my stay in Vivanta were:
First Problem: My United Airline return flight to Los Angeles was scheduled for 11pm. I instructed the Tour Operator Culture holidays to reserve additional night stay at the Vivanta hotel so I can relax in my room before the long trip to Los Angeles until departure time to the airport. I paid in advance for the additional night.
When I checked in the hotel, first stop on the tour, I confirmed that I have prepaid additional night in the hotel. In the morning of the last day of the tour, departure day, I checked with the front desk about my additional night of stay. They had no record of it. I explained that I prepaid for additional night of stay and had it confirmed when I checked. I asked the front desk clerk not to give away my room away. I contacted the Tour Operator Culture holidays vie e-mail, explained the issue. Twenty minutes later they informed that the issue was resolved.
In the evening, during check out the front desk clerk handed me a bill for the additional night of stay. I started to get irritated as I explained once and again and again to multiple front desk clerks the problem. They were confused and kept trying to get me to read the billing statement that they printed of the computer as if it is the Holy Grail. I explained I do not care what the bill says. At no time during their confusions they consulted with a manager. I asked to talked to manager, they kept assuring me that the manager could not help me as they did all they can to solve the Issue. I demanded to see a manager as I was running out of time to catch my flight. I could see the fear in their easy for escalating the issue.
All front desk clerks disappeared in back. Five minutes later one of the clerks came out and pointed to a young sharp dressed gentleman that was watching all my conversation with the staff behind the desk as the manager. He asked me in a very cold voice what is the problem. At this point I was late to my plane and had it with this hotel. I looked at him and said I do not have a problem! The problem is with your staff and your hotel. I said will not explain for the tenth time how your hotel screwed up, I recommend that you talk to your staff, and call the tour operator immediately and resolve this issue. Then I added, I am leaving in five minutes not matter what you do! He started to recite me the hotel policy. I told him he is running out of time and asked for his business card. He explained the he said he does not have one. Luckily, the tour operator sends one of his staff to see me off to the airport. I explained to the tour operator staff person the issue. He made a phone call to his manager, few minutes later as my luggage was take to the taxi, the manager told me that the issue was resolve. No apology was given.
Second Problem: Once the additional night issue was resolved, again I was handed separate bill for breakfast in the morning. I explained that breakfast was included with my room. They did not understand why I was billed for breakfast nor can they delete the charge. Again I request to see the manager. He was the same manager that I talked to before. He checked few things and told me that I have to pay the additional charge. Calmly I explained that I spent over $4,000 on my trip to India and I am not about to not pay for my breakfast that I already paid for? I asked to speak to his manager; he said he is the only available manager. I told him Five Stars hotels always have a manager on standby. Then he explained that I had additional guest with me for breakfast. I told him that I had breakfast alone. He showed me signed restaurant bill charged to my room. I looked at the bill and told him that the signature on the bill is not mine. He asked me to sigh my name, I guess to make sure that was not my signature, I did. He said OK the bill is cleared of your account! That was that, No apology was given.
Third Problem: Long before going down stairs to check out, early evening around five pm, I was packing my cloth and was going to iron my traveling cloth. I discovered that cloth iron was not working. I called housekeeping to get replacement. No one answered for few minutes. I called the front desk and asked for replacement. Thirty minutes went by and no iron replacement! I called the front desk again, they transferred me to housekeeping, and again I requested a replacement. Thirty more minutes went by, no replacement. Again I called the front desk and housekeeping, they promised to send replacement.
Forty minutes later a young man from house keep knocked on the rooms door and apologist that the hotel does not have a replacement and offered to take my cloth and get them ironed. I asked how long will it take, he said two hours. I told him I do not have two hours. Five Stares Hotel should never have broken anything in the room. Rooms should be checked and rechecked before new guests arrive to make sure everything is working. Additionally, once I called housekeeping, it should have been few minutes to get a replacement Iron. Something is wrong with the housekeeping department in a five star hotels when they cant respond timely and have no spare Iron. Five Stars hotels must train their staff and management to provide Five Stars guests service.
I rate the hotel Three stars