from Manchester, United Kingdom
Submitted on 06-09-2016
When I arrived at this hotel I was immediately made to feel welcome by Mr Kisen Cheng, who checked me in.When I was shown my room I was very impressed by its size, and its exquisite design. From the window I had a view not only of the picturesque grounds, but also of Dianchi lake. There were so many in-room amenities that it took me while to find them all. I was planning to stay three nights, but seeing the room and the rest of the hotel, I felt like staying for the year! Staff invariably went ...
When I arrived at this hotel I was immediately made to feel welcome by Mr Kisen Cheng, who checked me in.When I was shown my room I was very impressed by its size, and its exquisite design. From the window I had a view not only of the picturesque grounds, but also of Dianchi lake. There were so many in-room amenities that it took me while to find them all. I was planning to stay three nights, but seeing the room and the rest of the hotel, I felt like staying for the year! Staff invariably went out of their way to be polite and helpful.
Navigating your way around the sprawling complex, and negotiating the various elevators can be a little daunting at first: the first few days I had difficulty finding breakfast, but in each case was helped by a member of staff.The breakfast seemed to have more options for local guests than Westerners, but then all the other people at the hotel during my stay appeared to be Chinese.One criticism, the croissants and pains-au-chocolat were very greasy. I was glad to see that when staff noticed had drunk my coffee, they offered me another.
I was not feeling too well during my stay, so I ordered room service a number of times. The first time everything was done professionally, and the man who brought the tray was very pleasant and smiling; the two other occasions the service seemed to falter. There is a slight problem with communication when ordering room service: in a hotel of this calibre you expect staff to be able to understand English, especially when you are asking for items on the menu. I asked for cream brule, only to be told it was not on the menu; when I read out the Chinese description they realised what it was. On one occasion I ordered a fruit platter, they mentioned it when reviewing my order, and it wasn't brought.
I had some problems communicating with various people manning the concierge desk too. They were all extremely polite I should point out, but even when asked for directions to the local pharmacy, which the guide to the hotel said was very near,they didn't recognise what I meant until I used the Chinese word. The pharmacy is not that near by the way, especially if you are not too well. When I did go to the pharmacy too, the concierge did not offer me one of the forty or so umbrellas next to him, despite it starting to rain. On another occasion, as I was going out into the city, I asked the concierge if it was raining, he said yes, looked at the umbrellas, and didn't offer one.
At the Butterfly Bar I ordered an iced coffee and was given a lukewarm to cold one, I was then brought a glass of water that was described as 'iced water, sir!', but it was just cold, not particularly cold even. The waitresses, however, were so well-trained, pleasant and eager to please, that when they gave me a form to fill out about the service I wrote only positive things!
I asked for a late check out as I had a flight at 7.50 in the evening, and that was readily granted. I was planning to leave the hotel about four, and wanted to have a shower before doing so. Some time after two the electricity was cut, not the fault of the hotel, but I was surprised they didn't have back-up generators. This meant that there was no water for showering, and no elevator to take me and my luggage down from the fifth floor. I went down using the emergency stairs, and asking at reception realised that their computers weren't working either. They asked if I would have a complementary drink in the Butterfly Bar while trying to sort everything out. Somehow they managed to get the luggage, and they wrote out my bill manually, dealing with a very difficult situation professionally, and getting me to my taxi just at the time that I had intended to leave. The electricity went back on at that point and they rushed to present me with a print-out of the bill.
So I had a few minor complaints, mainly focused around the level of English comprension, but the overall standard of service was so high I can only rate the hotel as a whole as excellent.